A new documentary explores teenagers who have acquired notoriety online and how it is impacting their lives.
Some people may see fame as the ultimate marker of success, but what about micro-fame? A documentary created by Joey Camire at Sylvain Labs, with the help of Greencard Pictures, explores how fame across social networks can affect young people today. In this case, the video is focused on a teenager with 81,000 Instagram followers, who is considered to have achieved “Instafame.”
The project started when Joey Camire started to notice various young people appear on the Instagram “favorites” page, which led to him to question what these individuals had done to get there. One example was Benjamin Lasnier, a young man from Denmark who became famous almost entirely through Instagram, and received a record deal despite a lack of any specific musical talent.
While this was “the most extreme example,” Camire continued to see “more and more of these teenagers pop up with legitimate, albeit smaller scale, fame.” From then on, he wanted to explore what happens to someone who is confronted with overwhelming positive feedback for almost anything they do online.
Camire goes on to explain some of the reasons he thinks young people go in search of online fame:
I think that there are a lot of reasons why this might be a phenomena, but some of the most pressing things I relate to human connections and a sense of community. Studies show that there is a positive correlation between the desire for fame and the feeling of loneliness— and this generation wants fame more than ever.
He also thinks that social media could change the way we look at fame forever. Where there was once only movie stars and fashion models, there are now reality TV personalities. Below them there are the social media celebrities who made their fame exclusively online, and the question now lies in whether or not there is a limit to how segmented the fame can actually be when it comes to online activity.
I do think the Middle Class of fame will rise, the question is what that means for the rest of us. Do people who have a perfectly average number of followers— I have like 300-ish instagram followers— need to be worried that they’re going to be judged against those with more?
Check out the documentary below.