I want to start 2019 off by discussing influence. The age of social media has created a whole career out of having influence. Seemingly, regular people, even children, have become famous simply by giving their opinion on something. I hate the term “influencer” and I stay away from it like the plague. Largely because I can’t help but wonder what people’s true motive is. I have always believed that the only necessary influence is to make myself and my community better than it is. That’s something bigger than a paycheck can offer.
Something I constantly notice is the greed that often comes with influence. Once someone is paid to endorse products, their integrity often flies out the window. It’s unfortunate because consumers look up to “influencers” to avoid scams and still end up falling victim. It is disheartening to see a company have the ability to swindle people out of hundreds of dollars. It’s even more hurtful when the person that encouraged the purchase of said product turns a blind eye.
I challenge every “influencer” to be considerate of their audience. As creatives, we all want the ability to pay bills doing something we enjoy. However, integrity shouldn’t be compromised because of the possibility of a profit. It is vital to remember that followers and viewers are the people who put you in this position. They are the same people that can take it away. Be prepared to accept the responsibility that comes along with your influence. Otherwise, get ready for a quick rise and a hard fall.