Social Media, Influencers, Advertising and Content Creation

As usual, definitions

Content creation is the contribution of information to any media and most especially to digital media for an end-user/audience in specific contexts.

Wikipedia

That sounds so abstract, right? And I think that this is by design.

advertising, the techniques and practices used to bring products, services, opinions, or causes to public notice for the purpose of persuading the public to respond in a certain way toward what is advertised.

Brittanica

Hmm.

Let me be clear I do not think making music, art, writing, painting, sculpting, actors, dancers, photography etc is content creation in how it is often used in this day and age.

Video essayists, podcasters, people who create on sites like Patreon, even vloggers – those create content.

Influencing on the other hand……….

I sometimes see SOME people say they are content creators, creatives and I’m like…. capitalism really sold us the idea that advertising/marketing goods and services is some form of art. Like it’s somehow different from the advertisements we see on TV or radio. But is it? When you post trying to sell those who view whatever product or service in exchange for pay, aren’t you just advertising? I don’t think we can argue with this point. It is an advert placed on social media on behalf of a company – “Paid Partnership”.

There was a TikTok where the person said something to the effect that “Google exists to provide avenues for corporations and advertising companies to sell us things” and how do you argue with that seeing what for example YouTube is now. These social media companies like to spread the messaging that what they are doing is helping to create connection and all that nonsense but in reality it is creating environments and collecting data about consumer usage and then turning back to corporations to tell them “Look, these people spend time on our app/site so advertise with us.”

And isn’t that what influencers do?

Influencers like the term content creators to detract from the fact that they are just selling stuff

Tiffany Ferg

Someone who has accumulated, cultivated a large following, with the ensuing assumption that they can influence their followers through the parasocial relationship and then turn around and basically sells – whatever it is- to those who consume their offerings on whatever platform (It is funny to me when we are told that influencers aren’t meant to make us buy things but to “inform” us about the product/service).

An advertisement by any other name is still an advertisement. Just because you attach a personal story to it does not make it less so.

Especially if every single post is #Spon, #Ad, #PaidPartnership?

We really need to separate this need we have that what we do for money (our jobs) being a thing we are passionate about – or even thinking it is that important because I don’t know – it really isn’t in the grand scheme of things. Make your money how you must (we all are out here) but don’t make it seem as if you are doing something noble, important or that there is a difference from other people’s jobs because you perform vulnerability by using your personal experiences to sell the rest of us something.

Final Thoughts

Hyper consumption will not save us.

To be honest the speed with which I skip an advert on YouTube is how I forward and scroll past adverts on Instagram done by influencers.

I think the worst thing that happened re: influencer culture is how we treat musicians, actors, writers etc.

Let us also keep in mind who our enemy is here: CAPITALISM

Death to celebrity culture and attendant issues revolving around it.

To close, I am not here for bad faith arguers and simplistic thinking on this matter.

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