Are you an aspiring Youtuber? If you want to be famous now, you just have to get a camera/webcam and just start posting on YouTube. Voila – you are famous and making lots of money. Quite a life, eh?

In a crowd of millennials and Gen X, you can mention ‘I am a famous YouTuber’ or ‘I’m a famous Blogger’ – and you might have people flocking around you. Quite a number of millennials want to achieve overnight internet fame too. Fame, of course, does not mean that you become a center of affection. Rather a byproduct of fame is that you become highly influential, have to be responsible for each of your actions, and face negative reactions every other time, whether you do something good or bad. While the internet and its easy access has made it a level playing ground, things get darker than they seem.

Guy in the spotlight with arms up || Photographer: Jane Duursma | Source: Unsplash

When thousands of people start to like you, you tend to forget the consequences and responsibilities that come with fame. Our validation becomes a priority, pushing us to earn more fans and followers, leading to something terrible – obsession. Internet Fame obsession is one of the things that’s plaguing the mind of many individuals, though they don’t quite reveal it. After all, many know obsession to be a negative thing and they try to hide it. Now, the question is: is it harmful or beneficial?

The Good

Influence

One of the best things about internet fame is the influence that it can create on people. The internet has made it possible for anyone to click a button and reach out to thousands of people globally. With the power of the internet, not only can you be heard, but you can actually influence other people to act. Plus, it’s not only your voice that is heard – with your internet fame, you can also bring in the voices of other disenfranchised people into the spotlight.

Connecting With Others

Group photo on a country road in the woods || Photographer: Omar Lopez | Source: Unsplash

Internet is like the telephone conducting a conference that is connecting every person all over the world. However, not everybody is going to respond to the phone, neither would you want everyone to respond to it. Rather, you would want to connect with people who really can talk in a way that benefits you – people with similar interests and thoughtful opinions. For example, a BookTuber would want to connect with other BookTubers as well as readers and writers. If you become famous, you attract more people towards you and set a community. Imagine yourself like a beacon to which people flock. With the proper influence and direction, you do hold the power to change the world.

Hard Work And Productivity

Internet fame is often easy to obtain – you can even have a small accident, get it recorded and go viral. But the real challenge is maintaining that fame. Maintaining fame requires immense hard work. Always churning out engaging content, improving on yourself, calculating the statistics, making planned changes, etc. Your productivity should be at an all-time high if you want to keep your ‘fame’. Plus, you have to manage your work well too. Using the Pomodoro method or other time management skills helps and keeps your productivity without entering into the burnout phase.

The Bad

Cyber-Hatred

Criticism of any work is always welcome but the internet tends to become a toxic place in certain areas. When you release your work and when it starts getting recognition, a few rotten apples will start entering the bunch. You will have many negative people commenting on you or even messaging you. They would bully your appearance or voice or even race. Plus, they even go out one step further – giving death threats. A stranger whom you do not know would detail a murder plot. They could even be your neighbor – you never know since the sender is anonymous. Hate mail and death threats can have severe effects on your mind – making you almost paranoid.

Doxxing

Doxxing remains one of the worst products of the internet. Doxxing is the release of your personal information, sometimes including your address and phone number, on the internet. Combining it with death threats make it a severe blow on our mental health. Plus, it enables stalkers to find you and stalk you. On the internet, you can assume partial anonymity to prevent them, but doxxing bring you out in the open. It might soon become a crime, but even then, it leaves a negative impression on you.

Over-Validation

Guy looking at fraction of face through shard of mirror || Photographer: Fares Hamouche | Source: Unsplash

This is where obsessiveness comes in. Once you achieve internet fame, you will try to not only maintain but stack up on that fame quotient. Many people tend to lose their identity and become an archetype of what the audience wants. Reel life and real-life start mixing up. Not only is this unhealthy but it comes with serious consequences. People admire other people who have the courage and self-awareness to be themselves. While as a YouTuber, you might act as someone else and gain a lot of subscribers at first, but in the long-run, people would like to see someone more genuine and not an archetype. But since your hunger for validation has made you someone else, the sudden fall in popularity would lead to devastating consequences – mentally, physically and even, in your financial plans.

Internet Fame can be a great thing if you know the possible consequences of it and be responsible for what you are posting. And as far as obsession is concerned, well, personally, I believe being obsessed about anything is wrong. Imagine some of the good things that people might be obsessed about. If you are obsessed with self-help books, you will only end up reading hundreds of self-help books without acting on even one of them. If you are obsessed about helping people, then you will have no time for yourself.

Obsession is an unhealthy behavior. There is no shame attached to internet fame, however, try to keep your obsession at a low. Be original and you will do great!

Mayukh Saha

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