Ukraine war: The stolen faces used to promote Vladimir Putin (BBC)

BBC: Ukraine war: The stolen faces used to promote Vladimir Putin. “Indian influencer ER Yamini has never tweeted in her life – she prefers to cultivate her big fan bases on Instagram and YouTube. But in early March, a Twitter account using her picture tweeted: ‘#IStandWithPutin. True Friendship’ accompanied by a video showing two men hugging – one representing India, the other, Russia. Yamini says she doesn’t support either country in the Russia-Ukraine war, and worries about her fans.”

BuzzFeed News: Male Fashion Influencers Are Saving Basic Men Everywhere

BuzzFeed News: Male Fashion Influencers Are Saving Basic Men Everywhere. “There’s a growing niche of TikTok guys who show their peers how to elevate their style. Take Ethan Glenn. Glenn posts his outfits, hauls, and sponcon for an audience of over 300,000. This isn’t groundbreaking content. But considering that a whopping 84% of influencers doing sponcon on Instagram are women, it’s noteworthy that more guys are finally getting in the game. After years of women running the fashion show online, it turns out that men want to be influenced too.”

NPR: How one book influencer championing Black authors is changing publishing

NPR: How one book influencer championing Black authors is changing publishing. “[Cree] Myles first partnered with Penguin Random House last year, when she organized a read-a-thon called Black Like We Never Left featuring works by Toni Morrison. The late, heralded, Pulitzer and Nobel-prize winning author was published by Knopf, a division of Penguin Random House. A few months later Penguin Random House offered Myles a job curating an Instagram platform centered on Black books.”

American Banker: Banks bid for viral fame with videos and influencers on Instagram

American Banker: Banks bid for viral fame with videos and influencers on Instagram. “Bankers across the country are capitalizing on the social media channel. Dunroe, a social media analytics company, tracks more than 1,400 institutions insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. on Instagram, which CEO Cameron MacNiven says he expects is close to comprehensive. But banks continue to add accounts and to use videos and influencers to boost brand awareness among Instagram’s billion-plus monthly users.”

NBC News: Young influencers are being offered cheap procedures in return for promotion. They say it’s coming at a cost.

NBC News: Young influencers are being offered cheap procedures in return for promotion. They say it’s coming at a cost.. “From Botox to breast implants, medical providers have turned to social media for a new kind of personalized advertising that comes directly from influencers. And in the growing industry of cosmetic providers, there are few to no rules when it comes to advertising body modifications, which opens the door to offering teenagers free, unlimited cosmetic procedures. NBC News spoke with 12 social media personalities with audiences ranging from under 100,000 to more than 10 million followers who detailed how they feel pushed to look perfect in real life and online.”

MedicineNet: Who Are the New ‘Patient Influencers’ on Social Media?

MedicineNet: Who Are the New ‘Patient Influencers’ on Social Media?. “Patient influencers like [Gem] Hubbard fill social media these days, and a new report says pharmaceutical companies and medical device manufacturers view them as an increasingly popular direct-to-consumer marketing tool. These patient influencers share their stories in online health forums and on social media, using their personal experiences to help inform and educate others.”

CBS News: China discreetly paid for U.S. social media influencers to tout Beijing Winter Olympics

CBS News: China discreetly paid for U.S. social media influencers to tout Beijing Winter Olympics. “The social media posts fanned across a variety of popular Instagram and TikTok accounts that have a combined following of 5 million people who follow their videos, photos and content about travel destinations, sports, fashion and women’s issues. The Chinese Consulate in New York paid $300,000 to New Jersey-based firm Vippi Media to recruit the influencers. The posts were not properly labeled as ads in the way that TikTok and Instagram requires.”

Travel+Leisure: This Airline Made for Social Media Influencers Is Taking Creators to Coachella — How to Snag a Ticket

Travel+Leisure: This Airline Made for Social Media Influencers Is Taking Creators to Coachella — How to Snag a Ticket. “It’s all about the likes for this new airline, which is designed to fly social media influencers to the most Instagram-friendly events throughout the country. Willa Air — which was launched by Willa, a payment platform for freelancers — is offering influencers free tickets on a private jet along with enviable perks for those who apply. And its inaugural flight is to — appropriately — Coachella.”

Associated Press: How China’s TikTok, Facebook influencers push propaganda

Associated Press: How China’s TikTok, Facebook influencers push propaganda . “As China continues to assert its economic might, it is using the global social media ecosystem to expand its already formidable influence. The country has quietly built a network of social media personalities who parrot the government’s perspective in posts seen by hundreds of thousands of people, operating in virtual lockstep as they promote China’s virtues, deflect international criticism of its human rights abuses and advance Beijing’s talking points on world affairs like Russia’s war against Ukraine.”

North Jersey: Instagram influencer ‘Jay Mazini’ pleads guilty to Bergen kidnapping charges

North Jersey: Instagram influencer ‘Jay Mazini’ pleads guilty to Bergen kidnapping charges. “Disgraced influencer Jay Mazini and an associate have pleaded guilty in a North Jersey kidnapping case that saw one of the social media star’s rivals beaten and held at knifepoint with a machete. The Edgewater star potentially faced decades behind bars for orchestrating the plot, until he cut a deal with prosecutors last week for a five-year prison sentence in exchange for pleading guilty to one count of first-degree kidnapping, authorities confirmed. “

Mother Jones: How Wellness Influencers Became Cheerleaders for Putin’s War

Mother Jones: How Wellness Influencers Became Cheerleaders for Putin’s War. “The path of disinformation follows a clear pattern. It starts in the shadows of the internet, where crusaders share some conspiracy with their die-hard followers. But these communities are not locked rooms—rather, people with overlapping interests flow in and out, grabbing pieces of disinformation that align with their own interests and then spreading it to their followers, who in turn do the same. In the last few weeks, I’ve watched this happen in real time, as natural-living Instagram accounts turn wild theories about US-supported biolabs in Ukraine into pastel-hued memes.”

‘I’m writing this post now and crying’: Russians bid farewell to Instagram before midnight ban (Washington Post)

Washington Post: ‘I’m writing this post now and crying’: Russians bid farewell to Instagram before midnight ban. “The tears were flowing Sunday among Russia’s airbrushed Instagram influencers, who begged their followers in farewell posts to join them on alternative social media platforms, as Russian authorities prepared to shut down the U.S.-owned social network at midnight. Russia’s communications regulator, Roskomnadzor, officially banned Instagram on Friday and gave Russian users a 48-hour grace period to say goodbye to the popular app, initiating the forced exodus.”

Media Matters: A pro-Russia propaganda campaign is using over 180 TikTok influencers to promote the invasion of Ukraine

Media Matters: A pro-Russia propaganda campaign is using over 180 TikTok influencers to promote the invasion of Ukraine. “Over 180 Russian influencers on TikTok are involved in a seemingly concerted propaganda campaign using the caption ‘Russian Lives Matter’ and participating in a combination of three trends that promote online support for Russia’s war in Ukraine.”

Washington Post: The White House is briefing TikTok stars about the war in Ukraine

Washington Post: The White House is briefing TikTok stars about the war in Ukraine. “Ukrainian citizens hiding in bomb shelters or fleeing their homes have shared their stories to the platform, while dangerous misinformation and Russian propaganda have also spread. And TikTok stars, many with millions of followers, have increasingly sought to make sense of the crisis for their audiences. The White House has been closely watching TikTok’s rise as a dominant news source, leading to its decision to approach a select group of the platform’s most influential names.”