Outstripping the Spotlight

Proud Dummies Lose Hard Online

Over the last few years, more and more celebrities have flocked to social media as a means of promoting their images and lifestyles. It’s a trend that’s tough to blame and even harder to ignore. An instantaneous platform that is all you all the time is a marketing dream. Yet the overextension of such a powerful tool has proven disastrous for some stars as of late.

Illustrator: Helen Teague

Illustrator: Helen Teague

Kim Kardashian’s flamboyant stardom recently landed her in trouble—more than 9 million dollars’ worth. You can almost hear Kanye saying, “We want prenup, we want prenup, yeah!” It’s hard to say whether the live tweets and stunt-worthy Instagrams are to blame, but with posts like, “Paris Squad” and “Kourtney and Kim take Paris” it’s at least apparent that the jewel thieves had a decent heads-up.

Even lesser known figures could see their success diminish by standing too close to the limelight. New Jersey rapper Retchy P is one of the latest examples. He’s known to post videos of himself rolling around, and rolling up, with some of his Uber drivers in broad daylight. In March of 2016 he was facing 20 years in prison for armed robbery. Prosecutors using rapper’s lyrics in court have become less of a worry, for talk is cheap. But if they were to check Retch’s Instagram, and happened to see the video of him hoisting a five-pound bag of weed in a Walmart, well, then they might have a case.

A good example of using social media in a more tactful way is Beyoncé. She neglects her Twitter for months and proceeds to drop her single “Lemonade” on the site like it’s nothing. Or that time when she burst onto the Super Bowl halftime show with “Formation,” and the next day the song’s video showed up on YouTube.

Her husband Jay-Z appears to have been woke since 2006, when he remarked in his song, “Beach Chair,” “I never surf the web, no I’ve never been on MySpace. Too busy lettin’ my voice vibrate, coughin’ out my space.”