Would you consider vlogging to be narcissistic
Are YouTube stars bad role models?
The times have changed. In the past, actors, politicians and musicians were considered role models for the younger generation, but now a new species has been added: Youtube stars. What influence do they have on the younger generation? Why are these stars so popular anyway? And what exactly is behind the phenomenon of vloggers?
Today's blog post deals with these and other questions.
Table of Contents
This is why many YouTubers are so popular
YouTubers often generate millions of clicks with often simple content. Make-up tips, parodies and gaming content are particularly popular with users. Most of the fans are between 13 and 24 and watch an average of 11.3 hours of online videos per week. The US media company Defy Media found out in a survey.
The topics covered in the videos are aimed at this audience. Everyday is topic - love. Lifestyle. To travel. The tone is always personal, a bit like lounging around on the sofa with your best friend or buddy. YouTube stars are stars you can touch. Someone like you and me This is exactly why many of them have such a large fan base. The personal approach picks up the young people where they feel understood.
In addition to their YouTube channel, the stars of the scene are also active on other social media channels. In terms of content, the different channels merge, which means that fans are also generated via other platforms.
By posting on different platforms, users get the impression of being there live anytime, anywhere. The YouTube stars are perceived as friends who accompany them through the day. You act on an equal footing with your fans and are perceived by them as authentic.
Not least because of this, they also have a great influence on the fan base. Companies have now also recognized this for their own purposes and are cleverly exploiting it for marketing purposes. Unfortunately, that now also undermines the credibility of many YouTube channels.
Lack of media literacy
It can be problematic when YouTube stars are sponsored by companies without their fans clearly recognizing it. Is the presented product really as good as the YouTuber promises? Or is there paid advertising behind it? It is important for the audience to be critical. However, there is often a lack of sufficient media skills, especially among the younger ones. Above all, the suggested closeness to their fans has given YouTubers great credibility, which many of them use for advertising purposes.
Many YouTubers are unaware of the power they have over young audiences. Not only purchased eulogies for products, but also, for example, a reckless statement about one's own political preferences, can have a major impact on the audience. YouTubers don't just sit in your bedroom shooting the video, they speak to hundreds of thousands of followers.
YouTube: a platform for narcissists?
This is also where the biggest criticism of the so-called YouTube stars lies. Are you really interested in the well-being of your followers or is it rather your own "fame"? Should some topics be left unaddressed or viewed more critically? It always happens that YouTube videos are sometimes sexist or homophobic, but above all often very superficial.
If you are very critical, you can see the videos as a proliferation of capitalism in its purest form. Is it still about content and ideas at all, or rather just about the person standing in front of the camera?
Of course, YouTubers continue to pretend to be authentic. As "real" YouTubers, for all of their millions of subscribers to thebest friend who is always in a good mood. Who supposedly every detail of his life is perceived publicly and as exemplary. However, a 10-year-old cannot yet recognize that many things do not or cannot correspond to the truth. He lacks the critical understanding of the media.
He cannot see that the picture of his favorite YouTuber may only be the picture that he would like to have of himself in public. He does not notice when he is being used as a target for advertising. And, he does not recognize the often excessive self-expression of his idol.
YouTube or KonsumTube?
Many YouTube channels live from so-called hauls. Nothing else is done in them than to show the audience what consumer goods have just been shopped. Not only does the line between actually purchased items and product placement blur here - it also depicts a life plan that is becoming more and more prevalent in our society: I consume, therefore I am.
Unfortunately, a superficiality is depicted in many YouTube videos, which is only aimed at appearance, lifestyle and clothing. The newest iPhone. The latest Nike sneakers. The most expensive watches, perfumes and clothes. They alone often become the content of a video.
It doesn't matter that most of the users can't afford these products. By watching the videos, you get the feeling of getting something off the cake. Even if it's just small crumbs. You get more than just product information: you get a picture of an ideal that you will most likely never live up to. You get longings and desires. They are taught what they don't have and who they are not.
In contrast to TV shows or computer games, YouTube videos are consumed much more unnoticed by children. Many adults are not even aware that, in some cases, very young children are shown a world of consumption there. They learn that it depends on what is in the account at the end of the month and what you have. A world in which self-portrayal becomes the most important characteristic and self-centeredness is considered a strength.
It is worth asking the children and young adults what they are seeing or even taking a look at the stars of the scene yourself. Because, of course, there are YouTubers who deal with less superficial topics. But, for this, awareness has to be created among the younger generation. And that only happens if you create awareness of the intentions of the various YouTubers on their channels (and preferably without a raised index finger!).
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