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Influencers Gone Too Far

Influencers have become a new breed of celebrities with incredible power and lucrative sponsorship agreements, yet with this comes great responsibility – with some influencers going too far with devastating results for both their followers and sponsors.

Social-media users have grown tired of seeing repetitive, cookie-cutter posts featuring celebrities posing with teeth-whitening kits, boutique clothing or appetite suppressant lollipops on social media, which has led to a surge of influencers going wild on these platforms.

1. They’re a cultural joke

Influencers are emerging celebrities with immense power and lucrative sponsorship agreements, but with such influence comes great responsibility; influencers have been known to endorse unhealthy products or engage in disturbing behavior which has serious repercussions for both their followers and sponsors.

Social media influencers make significant money through their content creation, yet the process isn’t easy. Influencers must often balance personal life and the demands of creating engaging material while staying up-to-date on trends, forging authentic connections with their audiences, and staying on top of channel analytics.

Influencers Gone Wild continue to make an enormous impactful on their audiences despite these difficulties, and some have even expanded into careers like fashion designing or business ownership. Influencers also play a huge role in changing young people’s behavior and self-perception – it is time we acknowledged this problem and demanded influencers act responsibly.

2. They’re a scam

Influencer fraud is a significant problem that costs brands millions and damages their audiences. Influencer fraud takes many forms; most commonly it’s seen through fake followers and engagements generated through bots or other automated software programs that like, follow and comment on posts to inflate metrics.

One telltale sign of influencer fraud is an unexpected rise in followers or engagements, coupled with numerous generic or irrelevant comments (e.g., multiple fire and heart emojis). Fake influencers can often be identified by their username containing alphanumeric characters that provide further evidence.

Influencer fraud often takes the form of falsified reviews or affiliate links; one prominent case being Logan Paul who used his influence to push fake eyeglasses claiming to cure color blindness. Such actions could expose influencers to legal action and sponsorship cancellation, along with possibly damaging their reputation or losing the trust and respect of their audience.

3. They’re not real

Social-media influencers are living out an age-old dream: becoming famous through sharing your life online. These tastemakers, often with no special skills or talent, earn millions posting pictures and videos about fashion, beauty, travel and food on social media – although many lead extravagant lifestyles that may be out of reach for many followers.

Influencer work can be intensely taxing and damaging to themselves and those they influence, with scandals costing sponsorships, prompting public outrage, and damaging reputations – which in turn damages trust between audiences and influencers, or potentially leading to mental illness in them.

As everyone can become an influencer these days, the distinction between real and fake influencers has become blurry. While some creators–such as Cameron-James Wilson who created Shudu; Joerg Zuber with Noonoouri and Brud; or Lil Miquela herself creating herself into an online celebrity–have been open about their creations, many others remain opaque about them.

4. They’re a waste of time

Influencers often receive a poor reputation; however, they can provide valuable benefits for brands. Their unique voices and large audiences appreciate them as marketing tools – this makes influencers an effective marketing solution. Just make sure that when selecting influencers for collaboration purposes that they actually qualify as influencers versus just celebrities with large social networks; look for thought leaders with engaged audiences that take action.

Producing new digital content on an ongoing basis can be taxing for influencers and their followers, and can lead to burnout for both. Furthermore, such prolific production can spark controversial situations like those discussed above; recently a makeup YouTuber lost her sponsorships after tweeting offensively racist jokes.

Other controversial aspects include glorifying hedonism, turning human relationships into transactions and undermining genuine talent. Thankfully, some influencers understand their actions’ consequences and work to rectify them; one TikTok creator even works with a therapist in order to remind herself that social media only represents part of her personality.


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