The cost of fame
A lot of Pakistani celebrities and influencers do more than just “influence” the masses. Their words of advice can often be misleading, and hence we have seen the backlash on Dananeer's, aka Pawry Girl, viral video about the “lip balm hack”. Even worse is the fact that, according to the public, they are still regarded as influencers with millions of followers.
“Influence” and “influencers” are deemed golden marketing buzzwords of the 21st century. The term "influence" enunciates the potential to take hold of the character, development, and behaviour of someone. An influencer, ergo, is a bravura who persuades the public by the virtue of their trustworthiness and credibility after acquiring specialised insight into the subject.
The pandemic opened scads of opportunities right when individuals introduced themselves as Johnny-come-lately to the digital world. Where innumerous proved themselves credible, a plethora of good-for-nothing influencers were merely driven by a dose of narcissism. A lot of influencers understood their assignment to inspire the public towards prosocial behaviour, but woefully, the darker side of the influencers has sprung up — manipulating the masses, passing irresponsible comments, spreading misinformation, promoting fraud, etc. It is nerve-wracking for our society to be associated with such influencers who end up leaving a vague feeling with their basic credible information, let alone the professional one. This is a grim reality and therefore the truth stands poles apart from what is displayed digitally.
Not just our influencers, but celebrities too, have had questionable actions. They endeavour outside their scope and therefore never fail to disappoint us with their irresponsible behaviours — Hira Mani, Sajal Ali, Ayeza Khan, and Zara Noor Abbas endorsing fairness creams show non-tried-and-true practice. Sadaf Kanwal’s illogical comments on marriage culture; Khalil ur Rehman’s misogynist comments; Maria B and Hira Mani’s irresponsible behaviour during Covid; Hira Mani’s sensitive comments on Dua Zehra’s case; Noman Aijaz’s remarks on extramarital affairs; Minal Khan copied Kylie Jenner's instagram stories and claimed them as her own, and many more controversies depict the extremely surreal and unethical approach coming from our famous celebrities. These actions have dispersed anger and resentment among the youth to resist and unfollow many celebrities and influencers as someone once commented,
"Someone please take their social media down".
Digital influencers shape the mindset of society, is a ground reality and plain truth. Our public has a desperate desire to look up to the influencers, presume their opinions as true, and regard their suggestions as authentic. These influencers and celebrities hold higher power to trigger and inject their thoughts into others’ minds. When users see influencers talking about a subject, it stays in their subconscious minds whether that is purchasing a product, following a lifestyle, or forming an opinion about a subject. The influencer's content may both influence and destroy the personalities of the masses in terms of people’s psychological health, materialism, body satisfaction, and much more. The influencers ought to be cautious with their words and acts since all prospects do not follow a one-size-fits-all strategy.
When netizens have two alternatives, to do the research or follow blindly, they often chose the latter one. A lot of questions arise on this account. Are these influencers maintaining the culture of credibility when spreading misinformation? Who is going to bear the cost of fame and who is actually at fault? The public who is following them blindly or the influencers? The influencers who are drowning in misinterpretation? Or is the change only like building the castle in the air since charisma and entertainment is what the masses want at the end of the day? These questions are indeed hard to resolve but at the end of the day, it is just the right proportion of intellect that both ends, the celebrities and the masses, need.