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The Death of Celebrity, Film, and Passive Media (Part 1: Internet Issues)

Performers are a classical tradition of entertainment culture, consumerism, and fundamental aspects of primary celebrity status. Charlie Chaplin, Katherine Hepburn, Elvis Presley, are a few classic examples of celebrity culture founded by exceptional performance and impersonal relationships. While technology has endlessly advanced all aspects of film making, there has become an initial and possible long-term fallout of the former celebrity title. Social media network engagement has revolutionized the ability to relate, connect, and intimately care for modern day celebrities. Instead of selective, impressive talent, and traditionally Hollywood or fashion models, modern day users are uniting behind a new method of self-presentation.[1] Where the separation between audience and performer was necessary to define and regulate a sense of quality content, a melding between opposing sides created an overflow of quantity content. Users now relate, through social media, their sense of personal beauty to the tenants provided and cemented by pop-culture and other actors[2]. Blurring the lines of personal intimate social media relationships is the new era of media players and increasing self-identity confusion.

Going back to the basics, performances are active and engaging types of experiences, from clowns, comedians, phenomenal actors, and even politicians in a few ways are re-focused as artists. Originally the film industry of the early 1920’s to the late 1940’s was more like the FORD motor production conveyance method, in the sense that quantity and equal quality was the ideal. After this initial Hollywood film bubble popped, (think of the great recession and WWII) media players were sent all over America in various mediums including new avenues for entertainment and information like television. Until the internet was invented and introduced by DARPA, this filtration of celebrity and evaluation of performance remained unchanged. Beginning off with a slow trickle into the mainstream, computers and the internet was about the change the entire concept of performer and celebrity. An impersonal / merit based system would inherently switch more appropriately to generalize judgment based on spontaneous [performance / and intimacy based style of self-presentation[3].

Melding these two concepts together create a new definition of “presentational-media.” Intimate and personal, amusing impersonal, and mediated personal presentation are the new self-relationships to social media networks.[4]

“Our celebrity system has been deeply embedded and wedded to what I have called a representational regime where culture and politics have relied upon a media filtering system to organize and hierarchize what is valuable, significant and important. (Marshall, 12)”

This new fixture of value and importance is the linchpin of self-comparison to similar social personas.[5] A high focus on reporting has come out about the relationships between weight gain, physical activity, and social network site addiction. Countering these objections are the factual elements that there is likely to be too small of clinical relevance to media outlets[6]. Moving aside the overly reported weight relationship between reality and online personality, certain social networks have a current legacy of inducing distressing mental health[7]. Physical side effects are not prominently kick started by social media, the depression and over self-comparison to fellow peers leads the users down a psychological distressful path which will then bleed into negative physical side effects as well.

Passive nature in pre-internet/pre-interactive media has been a building block for society since the Greek live theater provided catharsis for it’s public. Engagement has lived in the individual’s imagination by himself, only truly able to share the experience with other audience members post production. Once we opened another media frontier, the internet, in which networks became active rather than passive in communication and presentation the table between audience member and celebrity remains flipped over. The responsibility of owning a celebrity branding, providing insights into private and intimate events, and formally standing up for individual social justice rights, is the heavier side of intimate and active performance. While those who only reach for celebrity status but consistently self-evaluate to the point of identity devaluation. As the effect of negative self-judgment snowballs in modern society, mental health related to media sits in a precarious position. While opening opportunities for more performers to become, the risks of spiraling into negatively comparing the self and pushing identity into the flux of confusing “rebirths.”

[1] Trudy Hui Hui Chua, Leanne Chang, Follow me and like my beautiful selfies: Singapore teenage girls’ engagement in self-presentation and peer comparison on social media, Department of Communications & New Media, National University of Singapore, Singapore 117416, Singapore

[2] IBID

[3] Bambang Sukma Wijaya, The Development of Hierarchy of Effects Model in Advertising, Universität Bakrie, Jakarta

[4] Marshall, David, The promotion and presentation of the self: celebrity as marker of presentational media, Celebrity Studies, Vol. 1, No. 1, March 2010, 35–48

[5] Published as: Marshall, S. J., Biddle, S. J. H., Gorely, T., Cameron, N., & Murdey, I. (2004). Relationships between media use, body fatness and physical activity in children and youth: A meta-analysis. International Journal of Obesity, 28, 1238-1246. doi:10.1038/sj.ijo.0802706

[6] Ibid

[7] Munmun De Choudhury, Emre Kiciman, Mark Dredze, Glen Coppersmith, Mrinal Kumar Discovering Shifts to Suicidal Ideation from Mental Health Content in Social Media, CHI’16, May 07-12, 2016, San Jose, CA, USA ©2016 ACM. ISBN 978-1-4503-3592-7/16/05...$15.00 DOI:

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