Social Media Has Changed The Way We Entertain

The entertainment industry in present times is not what it used to be a decade back. Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter have changed the dynamics of entertainment. Let’s discuss how social media has changed our relations with entertainers, how they became so famous and what is their income model.

Social media has provided an ideal platform for the celebrities, actors and models who use these popular channels to post their photographs and information about their upcoming projects.The moment they post something, fans and admirers go berserk and reply back with likes and comments. They also send direct messages (DM) in the hope that the celebrity might reply, and when someone manages a reply, he/she goes to cloud nine. This is the power of social media. And this is not just limited to Hollywood, but is common around the world. You go to any part of the world, celebrities behave the same way. They want adulation, and fans give them just that. Even Bollywood stars are no exception, and Indian social media can vouch for that. 

Social media has changed the way celebrities are created. There are many influencers who are famous for the sake of being famous. They are no great achievers in any field, but social media especially Instagram is packed with their pictures, news, quotes and updates. For example, Kim Kardashian who is one of the leading influencers on social media without having any significant contribution in either films, music or modelling. You will often find her promoting either a cosmetic label, fitness product, or any other brand for which she charges thousands of dollars.

Social media has also come as a boon for such Hollywood stars who are not among the A listers. They have a huge following on social media and any top producer will love casting them in his project because their popularity will ensure the success of their ventures. Celebrities like Dwayne Johnson are not known for their acting skills, still his films are super duper hits. This is all due to their massive popularity on social media. In fact, social media itself has become the biggest reality show and everyone wants a piece of it.

Monetization of Popularity 

Social media has now become much more than just a communication platform. It’s a channel where you make money. In the past, the chartbuster singers hardly released a single album in a year, but that is not the case anymore. Now, you have YouTube, Instagram and Spotify stars who release their albums online on these channels and earn millions. And they don’t limit themselves with a single release, but are very prolific and come out with a new song every two to three months. This keeps them popular and rich at the same time. Can they ask for more? Social media has become a great medium for making money. For example, even if you have 1000 followers on Instagram, you can easily monetize that to have a regular income. There are many start-up brands that like to work with such minor celebrities since they cannot afford big stars. Many such small time influencers on social media in course of time became big names and started earning millions. The process of making a celebrity was turned on its head by social media. Now anyone with the right attitude and zeal can earn name and fame on social media.

Democratisation of Stars

Social media has demolished the idea of ‘elite class” and brought a level playing field. Now, the stars cannot guarantee the success of a project on the strength of their past achievements. Everybody – Big, small, or struggling artists have an equal chance to be successful. You don’t need to have a lot of connections to book a studio recording deal. You can release your number on the social media itself. In fact, the traditional ‘elite class’ now has a negative connotation, and is seen with contempt. Such celebrities are now considered ignorant of the real world.

Social media is particularly the most ideal platform for newcomers who are planning to make it big in the world of entertainment. Now they don’t need big production houses, endorsements, or advertisement blitzkrieg to promote themselves. They need only two things: talent, and attitude – the rest social media can take care of. In fact, to the courtesy of pandemic, whatever aura they had around them because of their stunning looks and appearance seems to have dissipated. They look so average in their homes without the support staff that made them look like Gods. In normal times, these mega stars were surrounded by a bevy of makeup artists who made them look like Greek Gods, but the pandemic has changed all that. They look as ordinary as any other person walking down the street. The aura of super stardom has vanished. This is the biggest reality check for audiences.

Social media has removed many stereotypes in the last few years. One doesn’t need to be based in a metropolitan, or a big city to become a star. Therefore, on social media, it’s not important which particular place you belong to, but what skills you possess as an artist, or how popular you are among the audience is more important. Social media has changed the way we entertain. Now, “fifteen minutes of fame” has become a reality. We don’t go to movie theatres to watch a two hour long film. We are happy watching 15 minutes of Kapil Sharma stand up comedy on the youTube or Netflix. Now, Salman Khan’s big budget ‘Radhe’ fails to bring us to the cinema halls, because we are happy watching Manoj Bajpai in “Family man” and Pankaj Tripathi in “Ludo.” We don’t buy costly albums anymore, we rather watch free streaming of songs on social media. In short, social media has completely changed  the modalities of how entertainment is provided and how we receive it. In all likelihood the trend will continue in the future, and all those associated with the entertainment world have to brace up for this new reality. Now, audiences are the real king and only they will decide what type of content to be made and how.

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