Washington Post: Trump’s ‘big lie’ fueled a new generation of social media influencers

Washington Post: Trump’s ‘big lie’ fueled a new generation of social media influencers. “The 2020 election and its turbulent aftermath fueled a powerful generation of online influencers, a Washington Post data analysis has found, producing sky-high follower counts for an array of conservatives who echoed Trump’s false claims of election fraud, known as the ‘big lie.’ … These accounts amassed followers despite vows by Big Tech companies to police election disinformation, The Post found.”

WIRED: Nothing Is Protecting Child Influencers From Exploitation

WIRED: Nothing Is Protecting Child Influencers From Exploitation. “Children can now enter the public gaze of millions with as little as their first ultrasound scan. As early as 2010, studies indicated that a quarter of children had an online presence before their birth, curated by expectant parents. There is something deeply Kafkaesque about a child’s day-to-day existence becoming a vessel for logo-embroidered merch and licensing contracts. But whilst Jackie Coogan may have been able to take back at least a fraction of the money made from peanut butter tins with his face on them, the prospects seem bleak for today’s hashtag babies.”

Washington Post: Niche internet micro celebrities are taking over the internet

Washington Post: Niche internet micro celebrities are taking over the internet. “Niche internet micro celebrities are people online who are known to a small but often dedicated group and they represent a growing variant of the attention economy. Online fame is a consequence for a niche internet micro celebrity, never the goal. They rarely make money from their social accounts, choosing instead to post for the fun of it. The term is often used in a tongue in cheek way.”

Boing Boing: Are YouTubers good or bad for the sport of boxing?

Boing Boing: Are YouTubers good or bad for the sport of boxing?. “…boxing is finally getting some mainstream attention thanks to YouTuber super fights. Celebrities like Jake Paul and KSI sell more pay-per-views than most ‘real boxers’ could ever imagine. As a result, boxing purists have become quite vocal in voicing their displeasure toward YouTube boxers, but there’s a strong argument that this new crop of celebrity boxers is great for the sport.”

University of Alabama at Birmingham: Sponsorship disclosures by social media influencers reduce engagement, study finds

University of Alabama at Birmingham: Sponsorship disclosures by social media influencers reduce engagement, study finds. “A new study in the Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice by Parker Woodroof, Ph.D., assistant professor of marketing at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Collat School of Business, looked at pet influencers marketing and the effect that certain textual and visual cues within sponsored posts have on social media engagement behaviors. Woodroof’s study found that mentions of sponsorships, using brand logos and overall saturation of sponsorships hinder social media engagement in pet influencer marketing.”

The Guardian: China ‘wild trip’ deaths put social media influencers under spotlight

The Guardian: China ‘wild trip’ deaths put social media influencers under spotlight. “Chinese social media influencers and their platforms have come under fire for posts about ‘wild trips’ – or visits to off-grid locations – after a huge flood killed seven tourists in Sichuan province. The tragedy, on 13 August, left seven tourists dead and eight injured after a flash flood at a valley in Mengzhou, in the country’s south-west.”

BuzzFeed News: Medical Experts Are Becoming Influencers Amid All The Anxiety Over Monkeypox

BuzzFeed News: Medical Experts Are Becoming Influencers Amid All The Anxiety Over Monkeypox. “COVID introduced us to the virus influencer: doctors and science writers on Twitter and Instagram who built huge social profiles — many of which translated into media appearances — by sharing news, information, and takes on an unknown virus during a history-defining pandemic. And now, with monkeypox having been declared a public health emergency, we’re seeing a similar shift, and many sensationalist medical experts have dominated the conversation as people search for answers.”

Rest of World: The overworked humans behind China’s virtual influencers

Rest of World: The overworked humans behind China’s virtual influencers. “When Akuma laughs, that’s the laugh of the actor who plays him; when Luo waves, it’s because a real person is waving. And when they go off-script to complain about exhaustion, overwork, or low pay, that’s a real person complaining about their actual working conditions – underscoring that virtual celebrities are subject to the same concerns and issues as human influencers.”

Al Jazeera: Social media ‘gurus’ prey on India’s small retail investors

Al Jazeera: Social media ‘gurus’ prey on India’s small retail investors. “India’s mom-and-pop investors are facing testing times. During a pandemic-era surge in the stock market, millions poured their savings into equities, drawing on advice from unauthorized financial advisers and social media ‘gurus’ to help identify the next big ticket. But a recent slide in stock values has laid bare the dangers of India’s lax capital market regulations.”

Unboxing videos on YouTube: What parents need to watch for (Brigham Young University)

Brigham Young University: Unboxing videos on YouTube: What parents need to watch for. “Videos of a child influencer opening a toy and demonstrating how to play with it have become wildly popular on YouTube, many garnering tens of millions of views from children around the globe. In fact, Walmart has a line of toys based on the reviews of a prominent kid YouTuber, Ryan Kaji of Ryan’s World. Unbeknownst to child viewers, however, is the fact that many of the toys shown in unboxing videos are paid for or provided by a brand, with the goal of influencing children.”