I think it’s pretty obvious how social media has occupied this generations attention. 1 in 4 We have Facebook and Twitter among others, but I can’t help but to think that Instagram has taken responsibility for it’s users becoming slightly more self-indulged. It’s not just a platform for uploading the nice pictures of what you might be doing throughout your daily life, but it’s become a competition to see who can the most likes. So much so, certain users who have received a great amount of attention from it actually receive endorsement deals or modelling careers.
The WestBrooks is a prime example of this. The new reality show follows the life of an Instagram famous personality and her sisters who reached the likes of the BET network to create this show. With over a million followers on just her Instagram account, India WestBrook has the attention of the digital world, and has used it to her advantage. These sisters are just one example of how important receiving all those “likes” are.
“With great power comes great responsibility” – Ben Parker. Okay lets forget the fact that I got that quote from Spiderman for a moment, I feel as though this applies to the individuals who have the social power through these social media outlets.
Trying to find a socialite myself to get an understanding from their point of view didn’t prove to easy, however I did manage to get some words from comedian Mikes Comedy who uses the various social medias to share his talent. Currently sitting on 95.1k followers on Instagram alone, there is some light that he could shed on the potential responsibilites for a social media star. Lucky for me he’s a student at my uni, accompanied by one of his friends also a user of social media the pair has a few words regarding the subject.
Market research was conducted online with 1623 participants that looked further into “Getting a “Like” over Having a Life”. Best selling authors Joseph Grenny and David Maxfield acknowledge the fact that consumers are losing connection with our lives in order to earn “likes” and social media praise, naming them “Trophy Hunters”.
David Maxfield then adds, “If our attention is on an invisible audience rather than the present moment, we become understandably disconnected from the moment. This study is a caution that our devices are beginning to control our attention in ways we may not even realize.”
I believe the problem is a lot greater then what most of us understand it to be, with technology becoming more advanced. The pair has also stated how the obsession with social media isn’t only becoming a distraction, but is dictating lives even if you are unaware of it.
A mother of a 3-year old writes: “I disciplined my son and he threw a tantrum that I thought was so funny that I disciplined him again just so I could video it. After uploading it on Instagram I thought, ‘What did I just do?’”. We are developing an obsession with capturing the perfect moment in order to show this to our followers, rather than being in the moment, all for social praise.