When Instagram Stars Die, Do They Live Forever?
How social media is legally and persuasively costing us our lives
So, when you see a headline like this:
Instagram stars and models on their private plane to Las Vegas moments before it crashed onto golf course killing all six on board
You have to stop everything and dive right in with a cautious temperament as you already know that what you’re about to receive isn’t going to be anything to be thankful for.
It’s a ghastly tale that reeks of all the reasons why and how social media is quietly and tragically costing lives with the shininess of falsehood — that is arming young people with ammunition that they’re inadvertently using to off themselves — with stunning expertise.
First off — I have to admit that I take issue with any label or job title that begins with “Instagram” because nothing about that is remotely genuine or even sensible. Our human nature tends to require healthy doses of validity by any means necessary and in my day — I had a fucker of a time convincing people that I was skilled enough to write for free — while waiting for my big break.
In the past year or so — I have examined the recklessness of the tools that were created for our destruction and I can honestly say that I’m 100% certain that I benefited greatly from the lack of Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter. Actually Twitter has been a godsend in many ways so it’s painful for me to lump it with the others— but the truth is that they all share the bullet points of manipulation that we’re just now trying to fully comprehend.
It took about a year of activity before Facebook began to repulse me — but I hung in there because I thought I was savvy enough to gain back control of my page — that was beginning to look like cryptic symbols — colliding with the images of my loved ones — who were becoming unrecognizable.
I hated being congratulated for friendships with people that weren’t my friends and I hated that my friends weren’t genuinely engaging with me.
I finally left the messiness in 2016 and never looked back. I then poured some of that emptiness into Twitter and Instagram — and the former paid off in more ways than one — even though I’m starting to feel levels of anxiety that are more to do with my choices rather than unwarranted attacks.
Instagram also became a mindless pleasure that provided much-needed amusement at the behavioral patterns of middle-aged users — desperately trying to compete with twenty-somethings in the realm of stomach abs — curly tresses and the overall quest for the reassurance that they’re #winning
This isn’t an insult to the older users as I totally get the freedom of expression and how you can’t pass up the opportunity to post endless pics depicting the day you looked like you were #boss or basking in #melaninmagic or #woke enough to hit up CNN and then claim your #dopeness with an impromptu reminder of how great your #naturalhair looks in a well-lit studio.
These images are actually quite nice and I will admit that I am that gawker who relishes how limber Halle Berry in the glare of a sunset near her Malibu pad. But then I also silently mock old schoolmates who never have a thing to say to me because I don’t “like” the daily posts that centers them with multitude of filters — in weird locations that seem to indicate that they really “need that fix” — at all costs.
Then there’s the annoying shit that makes my head spin when people come into my feed after I may have carelessly hit the wrong signal — and before I know what’s up — I’m deluged with a plethora of much younger users who are flaunting their pages with the hopes that the right eyes are dazzled by their potential.
They’re everything. Models, brand ambassadors, actresses, part-time actors, etc.
The number of followers are impressive enough — and regardless of how they swiftly garnered that level of respect — you can’t deny stardom is on the horizon — if it hasn’t already been bequeathed.
I guess that’s why the headlines about the young people ranging from ages 22–28 who recently died in a horrific plane crash gave me reason to pause.
I wondered about the footage that was included in the article — that detailed how things went awry soon after takeoff. The video shows one of the Instagram models playfully filming herself and another passenger literally minutes before the crash.
She seems thrilled about her mile high status and naturally wants to share her good fortune — because that’s how we roll. When you’re a star on Instagram — you’re required to work overtime —and remain dedicated to convincing those who worship you that their loyalty isn’t misplaced.
You can’t ever quit the mission of proving your viability. No matter what.
The message the young and impressionable souls are internalizing is righteously vile and we have nobody to blame but ourselves. How could we imagine that an accrued number of red hearts with the prize of elevating numbers would lead to something good or even safe.
I’m too damn old to even know who those poor young souls were despite their star appeal — but I’m willing to bet anything that if they had been born in 1973 — they wouldn’t have died an untimely death — minutes after postering in the interior of a vessel that ended up being their makeshift coffin.
I also can’t help figuring out if Instagram stars end up living forever in the flashy portfolios that endorsed their wishes and ownership of how special they were on earth — before the likelihood that they may end up in a plane — piloted by an alleged novice — tragically becomes the realest thing in their short but sweet lives.
Social media is legally and persuasively costing us our lives because we weren’t built to sport the immunity against the virus being viral overnight.
Even I get somewhat excited when my response to a more prominent user on Twitter begins to gain traction — and then I annoyingly delete it when I realize that they’re just performing their duty as a fan. Those numerous notifications have zero to do with my “non-verification.”
We should never live in a climate that tolerates the validity of whatever “Instagram stars” are supposed to represent when we know that none of it really means anything. Sure — loads of hustlers are “getting those coins” and I know talented acquaintances who have to step out of character by posting proof upon proof — of why they should be promoted to the big leagues.
But — when the lights go out just after we post the #winningshot— will it all be for naught — or will the stars continue to shine brightly even after the next day presents a new batch of entries — that are even more adventurous — with their shinier templates and trendier usernames.
It will never end — but the lives that are committed to the impossible assignment of living in the era of Instagram will continue to pay the price for being born at the wrong time.
That’s a real one in your refection, without a follow without a mention.
We need to get back to that mindset — and if it takes the coaxing of Drake to reverse us — then — let’s go!
Our very lives depend on it.