“It’s unfortunate that I now feel like I need to care about what others think of me, have them in mind when I post things, and not really be myself anymore.”
When I first made my account on Myspace in 2004, I never thought social media would be as HUGE as it is now! Social media has always been just a cool place to hang out with friends and even strangers around the world (that become friends aha). People would post fun carefree pictures, post super grainy videos of themselves and their friends, and the only thing that mattered was how you decorated your page and which order your friends were in on your “top 8”.
Boy have times changed! Ever since 2007 when Youtube introduced the partnership program that allowed popular content creators to get paid for the amount of views on their videos, people started to really take their online presence seriously. Everything became about business, branding,and ad revenue. Not only did people get paid from the ads that ran on their channel, but huge companies started sending Youtubers free products as long as they reviewed the products on their channel.People started to step their game up and went from using cute little camcorders and webcams to using lighting and camera equipment worth thousands of dollars for a full on professional production for 3 minute Youtube videos. It’s currently to the point where Youtubers have to explicitly disclose that their videos are NOT sponsored and that they purchased the reviewed product with their own money.
Yeah, but that’s just Youtube
It may have started with Youtube, but that was DEFINITELY not the end! Next you had Vine, Instagram, and Twitter where people were starting to get millions of views on their photos and videos,get endorsement deals, and became internet celebrities making a 6 figure income. These internet celebs are now making cameos in movies and TV shows, doing collaborations with major companies,starring in TV commercials, and walking the red carpet at award shows. Which is GREAT! There are tons of opportunities nowadays to make money and have an empire without having to go to go the traditional route. The only problem, is that social media has evolved into a sales pitch rat race. Youtube videos are now full of 7 minute commercials that you can’t skip and then the actual video is a wooden pushy sponsored video that somebody was obligated to post in order to pay their bills and keep their partnership.Every product a makeup guru posts is their “holy grail” and everybody has a coupon code or something new to sell. What really turned me off the most was how makeup and hair gurus would lie through their teeth about products that were being sent to them. ESPECIALLY with the hair gurus receiving weaves and wigs from online companies! These
heifers gurus would receive a $450+ wig and claim that it was top quality human hair and gush about how perfect the hair is.However, when their viewers actually trusted them and bought the wigs, the shit would fall apart and melt due to it being cheap hair that had plastic fibers mixed in itand being poorly constructed. Now to be fair, sometimes the gurus were genuinely unaware that companies were only sending THEM the good hair, but a lot just wanted to collect a check and would never even address the issue, just block anybody that called them out.
Even the Youtubers that used to post funny skits now have lame videos where it seems like everything was rushed because they are on a deadline and the delivery is really forced because they don’t really want to do it anyway. They’ll go from being their normal selves to suddenly sounding like a commercial like this, “Man you know what though? I sure could go for Carls Jr’s new bacon portabello mushroom burger. It’s full of 100% angus beef, portabello mushrooms, crispy lettuce, and applewood smoked bacon.” WTF!? This was so heartbreaking for me! To see so many of my favorite Youtubers pushing product after product in their videos was so wack. Especially since the quality of their videos dwindled because they weren’t doing their videos for fun anymore, Just business.
“social media just isn’t fun anymore!”
Why you hating?
I’m NOT! Again, of course I’m happy for those that get to make a living by posting online, but it sucks when people can’t be themselves anymore because everything is now about branding and being as fake as possible. Every single thing is now meticulously calculated and disingenuous. Instagram is full of staged photos and product placement and people are actually scheduling their Instagram posts on apps that automatically post your photos for you along with the caption and hashtags. Just like Youtube, every other photo is an ad for something. You have fitness people claiming that a damn tea is the reason for their ultra ripped body and chicks with plastic surgery up the ass (no pun intended) claiming that a waist trainer is the reason for their 24 in waist and 38in ass. Every photo looks professional as fuck because they spent half a day setting up their shot,doing their makeup and hair,and then they’ll use 4 different editing apps to add filters and change their facial features and body shape. Post it on Instagram and VOILA! 2,000 likes in 30 minutes! Years ago, being a phony try hard on social media and taking things this seriously was considered ridiculous and people assumed that you have no life if you do this much fabricate a perfect one online, but now everyone is doing it!
Why do you care?
Look,people can do what the hell they want. I don’t care! If you want to take cringe worthy “caught off guard” photos and pretend that you overdraw your lips to make them look plump instead of admitting that you get lip injections and then proceed to sell lip kits to convince people that they can get the same look,*cough* *cough* that’s on you!
What pisses me off though is when you’re telling me that I HAVE TO do the same in order to succeed in my industry. nuh uh, fuck that!!! As you’ve seen in my blog name, I’m an aspiring actress and TV host. Within the last 2 years there has been an EXTREMELY big push for people in the industry to have a large social media following. I’ve seen casting notices ask for actors to have 10,000 or more followers and I’ve gone to several auditions where at the top of the information sheet they’ll ask for your social media handle(s). This shit is SERIOUS now! They even have entire 6 week workshops on branding yourself as an actor with social media and how to get more followers. I watched a webinar in 2016 with a casting director giving actors tips in the industry and she told us that if it’s between you and another actor you have experience, training,fit the character, and put on a magnificent performance in the audition room and the other actor has NO training and probably did a shitty job in the audition,they will most likely get the part over you simply because they have more followers than you on social media. I was extremely disappointed after hearing this, but I kinda took it with a grain of salt. I recently finished a hosting program and on the last day of class it was reiterated just how important social media is now! One girl in the class has about 20,000 followers on Instagram and actually got her agent because of it! Then the instructor told us about several people that have been training with her privately that were given HUGE opportunities like hosting award shows and getting to have their own show, but had 0 idea what they were doing when it came to hosting. ” That is so unfair!” exclaimed one girl in the class. The instructor then told us that we needed to start working on gaining a following on the internet because it is what matters in this industry nowadays.
BITCHHHH I’ve been stressed out ever since! For me personally, I’ve always made videos, memes, and silly posts on my social media pages. The only difference is that I would get a max of like 15 likes on my Instagram photos My “content” was pictures of my dogs, a photo of the video game I was currently playing, stupid stuff like somebody’s underwear being on my windshield, or a photo that commemorated me FINALLY perfecting pancakes! My Instagram has always been just for fun and just kinda… there. I never cared about how many likes I got because I didn’t have to. It was JUST social media. It was JUST for fun. Now that I have to actually give a shit about what I post, what time and what hashtags will get me more likes and followers, I’m stressed out! I thought it was hard to simply watch what I say and filter my audience on Facebook so that the industry people I’ve friended didn’t see my “niggas be like” memes (lol). Now that I have to pre-plan my posts and think about what would be good enough to post and get more followers and views, social media just isn’t fun anymore!
Now that followers and views are actually important for my CAREER, I feel like I’m in last place in this race called social media. I have been frustrated to the point of tears when my photos only have 50 likes after I posted it 12 hours ago. I am now obsessively checking to see how many followers I have on Instagram and Twitter (currently 670 in Instagram and 1200 on Twitter). I now find my self contemplating either giving up or resorting to just buying a couple thousand follower to “boost” my popularity and look good for the casting people.Of course, I’m not going to because there are ways of checking for fake followers. lol
This is how bad…
About 7 months ago I had THE most humiliating audition that I’ve ever had in my entire life. It was an audition for a well known cell phone provider and the audition consisted of me and one other girl going in to the room together and the two casting directors asked us to pull up our Instagram accounts on our phones. I was shocked, but thought “oh! I have some fun photos on there! This is a cool way for the casting directors to get a glimpse of our personalities! yay!”
The casing directors had both of our phones and started scrolling through our Instagram. While looking at the other girl’s page all you heard was “OMG is that you surfing? whoa! that’s a huge wave!” “you went to paris last week? how cool!” “this is a breathtaking shot of you in fiji!” OMG OMG OMG OMG! The CD checking my page was exactly like this”…..hmm…heh…okay. Hey this is cute! ok…nice”. As soon as they both switched phones then the quiet CD started fangirling over this chick’s page even more than the other one did. “OMG COME LOOK AT THIS! She went to that pub in London I told you about last week!!! OMG IS THAT YOUR FRIEND!? SHE WOULD BE GREAT IN THIS COMMERCIAL!”. The next casting director that scrolled through my account ran over to look at the other girl’s account again and looked at my account like “meh” I just stood there feeling embarrassed as fuck. I wanted to snatch my phone from them and go home.
At this point, I have taken social media more “seriously”, but I’m not gonna lose myself over it. I’m just going to figure out what my lane is and stay in it. I have recently deleted over 678 of my cute and dorky photos and left the ones that appeal to what people tend to be attracted to. It’s unfortunate that I now feel like I need to care about what others think of me, have them in mind when I post things, and not really be myself anymore. I’ve been noticing a pattern. If I post a meme or photo/video of a video game that i’m playing, it’ll get like 7 likes. If I post a glammed up selfie, it’ll get like 80 likes. IT’s pretty disappointing and frustrating how superficial the average person is :sigh:.
Hollywood is all about playing the game in order to be successful! It is no longer enough to just train, audition, and have talent. I guess I have to get with the times. *kanye shrug*
Anyway, here are a couple of tools and I’m using for my social media pages.
***(By the way, I have an ANDROID phone! Most of these apps are available for the Iphone as well. Then again, what isn’t? )***
♥Hashtags (app)- It’s an app that has compiled all of the most popular hashtags. You simply copy the list of hashtags and post them on your Instagram or Twitter post. They have different categories with the relevant hashtags for them (Video games, fashion, music, holidays,travel etc)
♥Snapseed-Helps you make your photos all extra fancy by fixing the shadows,saturation, contrast, and all that good stuff.
♥Prisma– Takes your existing photos and make them look like really cool drawings or paintings.
♥Vid stitch– Makes it so you can add both photos and videos in a single collage frame.
♥Quick collage– an app that has dozens of collage frames.
♥Makeup plus– an app where you add realistic looking makeup and contact lenses to your photos.
♥Follower Insight For Instagram– A social media account analysis app that shows stats on the age and gender of your follower, how many followed and unfollowed you that week,most and least active followers, your most popular posts and more!
♥Watermark video– Useful for protecting your brand (I’m so sick of the word brand now!) by watermarking your videos with your name or social media handle.
♥ Preview– It’s used to schedule and post your Instagram photos or videos. It also provides brief follower analytics tools like the “Followers Insight for Instagram” app and allows you to edit your photos all in one app.
Guess we’ll see what happens?
By the way! *smiles*