The Hidden Gems of Small Niche Internet Celebrities

Social media is fake and influencers are not real. We’ve all heard (and probably shared) the sentiment: the perfect lives offered by the super-rich, super-followed, Instagram-famous TikTok are not the reality the rest of us live in.

Unreal and seemingly untouchable influencers are thought to be the culmination of useless, toxic and harmful everything that is wrong with social media and the internet. However, among these twisted online wastelands, which derive from mythic ideals of online friendship and community, are almost hidden influencers: internet micro-celebrities.

An Internet micro-celebrity is an online personality that has amassed a small, dedicated, and intensive following. Unlike influencers, small internet celebrities do not generate significant income or gain social influence and widespread recognition through their content creation. They go largely unnoticed and live among us as ordinary people, posting in a community of several thousand people.

Internet micro-celebrities are alluring because of their relatability: they have jobs, go to school, go to practice, have embarrassing stories that sound like a FaceTime call from your best friend, and wear clothes that are completely thrift store, mall Made locally or Target. And amazingly, they show it to the rest of the world. By posting in a crack of internet chaos, this micro-celebrity subverts the absurd excesses of the average influencer, seeking to connect with their followers through the mundane and mundane.

I am no stranger to these online personalities. In fact, I’ve found that the everyday content they produce is the kind of content I like to consume the most. On TikTok, I almost religiously follow other young, college girls who post about their daily routines, college classes, love lives, and outfits.

I follow some of these accounts, like @thecoolestgirlintheworld777, owned by Sophia Giudice, a 20-year-old student at the University of Texas at Austin. I’ve used her specific content so much that Sophia no longer feels like an obscure online presence, but a long-distance friend. You think Sophia Is My friend, to some extent I know his major, his family, his favorite books, authors, bands and movies, we even follow each other on Goodreads. I can tell you her boyfriend’s name or her hometown, but Sofia doesn’t know me. For him I am a stranger. This unsurprising and unavoidable fact is almost an everyday influence. Sophias accounts are home to hundreds of videos detailing her life: get ready with me videos updating her loyal followers on her days, moaning about the shenanigans she faces or the recent media hot tips she enjoys. .

Sophia is not alone in creating this type of content. I follow dozens of other accounts, @whipplequincy, @db3tch and @amazonalexa.0 to name a few, where real account owners post very real content about their lives in an ever-accepting internet vacuum. From their live streams with accompanying chat feeds, boyfriend updates with makeup tutorials, daily vlogs and curated slideshows and cam-lights from private Snapchat stories, I’ve developed a sense of personal connection with this micro. Celebrities But while these internet relationships can be a fun form of media consumption and a convenient and accessible therapy for loneliness, they aren’t real. They may seem closer to real friendships than our relationships with influencers, but in the end they are just internet illusions. By following these micro-celebrities, I’ve cultivated a one-way friendship with a mass of images and pixels, one that belongs not only to me but to thousands of their other follower-friends.

This seemingly hidden subset of Internet fame and influence is as fresh as it is dystopian. It’s strange to know the everyday and real happenings of people who don’t know I exist. But in these glimpses into the ordinary lives of people who are essentially strangers, I find a sense of real connection. My kindred spirit connects me to these internet micro-celebrities and the rest of their followers. They serve as proof that people really aren’t that different, that out there, people not only care about them, but also share my thoughts, feelings, interests, and ideas, and are simply waiting for me to to find

These creators may never have an actual, physical presence in my life, but embracing their candid content in a sea of ​​online fakery makes them a hidden gem in their own right. They promote acceptance of everyday life, pursue your passions, and celebrate the humanity that connects us all. They emphasize the true hidden gems of life: our own experiences.

You can contact Kathryn Hamila, author of Everyday Arts khemmila@umich.edu


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