The Perils of the Social Celebrity (whatever ‘celebrity’ means these days) [slideshare]

Slide fom Stephen Davies presentation about celebrities use of social media. Image features Britney Spears.I’m not entirely sure what a celebrity is any more, but whoever they are, Twitter has removed great temporal and bureaucratic layers between them and their fans (and each other).

For many, this direct engagement has fostered loyalty. This connection can be on a grand scale – such as Lady Gaga (unusual) – or on a more moderate scale (“celeb” Tweeters such as musicians Jane Wiedlin and  Nile Rodgers, author Julian Gough or politician John Prescott).

Direct access can of course lead to abuse. At times I’m amazed how people such as politician Louise Mensch or sports commentator Stan Collymore can filter through the nastiness and still make time to engage effectively with followers.

I’ve witnessed how relatively innocuous critique can result in offense being taken. Many celebrities have left the platform (some eventually return), but I see that Pet Shop Boys have retreated from Twitter, and people who would be wonderful on the platform (such as Paddy McAloon or Green Gartside) have never appeared or keep a very managed distance.

Stephen Davies from London agency 33 Digital  has a go at summarising the relationship between celebrities and social media – so far. Come back in 5 years and this will more than likely be quaintly obsolete, but right now, just make notes.

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