In 1985, American author Neil Postman published a critical book, Amusement to Death. In that era, the television medium gradually replaced the print medium and became the dominant information transmission. Neil Postman believes that the replacement of this public discourse power will lead to a major social change, and the rationality, order and logic represented by the print media will be broken by the television media, and replaced by superficial, In a fragmented, eye-catching form of media, human beings will willingly become appendages of entertainment, and eventually become a species that entertains to death. “Entertainment to Death” was well-received when it was published, but it is difficult for a single book to change the trend of media changes, and the rapid development of technology has far exceeded Neil Postman’s imagination. At the time of his death in 2003, the television medium, which he once regarded as the greatest threat, had begun to decline, and a new opponent, the Internet, fulfilled his prophecy even more aggressively than television.
At this time, the Internet has become the largest information dissemination medium, and you can see overwhelming news and news on every website. It didn’t take long for a college student named Mark Zuckerberg to create a website called “Facebook” together with classmates from Harvard University, which was mainly used for college students to publish information and communicate with each other. Everyone can freely publish information. The way to break the last shackles of “freedom”, the social network era officially began.
The rise of Internet celebrities, self-media dominates the screen
In 2004, the newly established “Facebook” was mainly popular among some college students in the United States. At this time, something happened on the Internet in China: a woman named “Sister Furong” was in Shuimu Qinghua, Peking University Weiming and Maopu posted some pictures of themselves on forums such as Weiming and Maopu. The exaggerated movements and expressions in the pictures caught the attention of countless people, and at the same time caused a lot of controversy, and even some forums caused users to fight because of these pictures. There was a “war of words” – some people think that these photos “dare to release themselves, show themselves, and have the spirit of the Internet”, while others think “this is grandstanding and attracting attention”. Debates against her have even been featured in traditional media such as television and newspapers. No matter who is right or wrong on both sides, the woman whose online name is “Sister Furong” has become popular, and people like her who are very popular on the Internet are called “Internet celebrities”.
To this day, most websites still rely on advertisements for their revenue. Therefore, the number of Internet pageviews has become the decisive criterion for the advertisement price. The more people who watch the website, the more advertisements, and the more economic benefits the website obtains. Driven by huge economic interests, whether it is a website or an “Internet celebrity”, the competition for clicks is a top priority, whether it is ugly or aesthetic, as long as the relevant content is entertaining, exciting, and eye-catching enough, “Wealth Password” can be obtained. Even for the number of clicks, new industries have emerged – “Internet pusher” and “water army”. These industries were born because the arrangement of Internet information is measured by the number of clicks. The higher the number of clicks, the more prominently the information will appear and be seen by more people. This “click war” has reached a fever pitch in the age of social networking.
With the popularity of social media, the Internet has entered the era of self-media. The so-called self-media, as the name suggests, is that everyone can be a media and publish content related to or interested in themselves. With the rise of platforms such as blogs and Weibo, “stars” can be said to win at the starting line. Stars such as Xu Jinglei, Han Han, and Yao Chen have reaped the first wave of dividends in China’s self-media era. Their success soon led agencies to follow suit, and social media operations have now become one of the most important platforms for celebrities to interact with, even surpassing, to some extent, their former hegemons, TV and magazines.
For the strong participation of celebrities on social media, many Internet celebrities have begun to take a different approach. Some people rely on professional knowledge to attract audiences in subdivided fields, some express their opinions in the emotional field, social phenomena, etc., and some people have embarked on the “evil road”: in order to attract attention, they began to use review Ugly, weird, ostentatious and even soft porn to attract attention. People can’t help but ask: Can you give up the bottom line in order to attract attention? This situation is certainly not unique to the Chinese Internet, but a common problem with global social media. When domestic netizens are still criticizing the intensifying hype trend of the Chinese Internet, on the other side of the ocean, the Kardashian family in the United States has relied on hype to hype billions of dollars in net worth. The fans of family members on social media are more than There is still a large population in the United States. It can be said that this family has understood the entire industrial chain of “Internet celebrities”.
In 2022, 41-year-old Kim Kardashian divorced Kanye West, who was called “Kan Ye” by Chinese netizens, ending her third marriage and officially returning to being single.
Khloe Kardashian and basketball star Odom.
3 Enter Kendall Jenner in fashion.
The amazing Kylie Jenner.
The rise of the Kardashians
In 1995, the “Simpson’s Wife Murder Case”, known as the American case of the century, was judged. Statistics show that on the day of sentencing, about 140 million people in the United States watched the “Trial of the Century”. With the performance of the luxurious lawyers, Simpson was found not guilty, and with this trial, Simpson’s lawyers gained widespread attention, fame and fortune. Among the lawyers is a lawyer named Robert Kardashian. For Robert Kardashian, this case should be the highlight of his legal career, but what he did not expect was that after his death in 2003, the name Kardashian became a cultural symbol in the United States and even the world. The Shan family has become one of the richest families in the entertainment industry, and has even been called the “JFK family of entertainment.” Compared to this, Robert Kardashian’s highlight moment in “The Simpsons Killing His Wife” also pales in comparison. And it was his ex-wife Kris Jenner who led the Kardashian family to the top of the entertainment industry.
After graduating from high school, Kris Jenner began to “break into society”, worked as a flight attendant for a year and worked some odd jobs. After a chance encounter at a racetrack with a wealthy second-generation lawyer, Robert Kardashian, she immediately took action to break up with her then-boyfriend and threw herself into Kardashian’s arms. After the two got married, they had three daughters and one son. The two divorced in 1990, and Chris married former Olympic champion Bruce Jenner and gave birth to two more daughters. Although he didn’t go to college, Kris Jenner is very business-minded. Although she “went out of the house” after her divorce from Kardashian, she began to take Bruce everywhere to give inspirational speeches, and recorded fitness together with the contacts accumulated during her marriage with her ex-husband and the celebrity effect of her current husband Bruce, a former Olympic champion. video. This operation not only brought a certain income to Kris Jenner, but also taught her how to be an agent and how to use the media. When Robert Kardashian died in 2003, 4 children lived with Kris Jenner logically, and the ambitious “Kardashian family” rise plan officially kicked off.
In 2003, there was a “big news” in the American entertainment industry: the “sex tape” of Paris Hilton, the heir of the Hilton family, was exposed, causing an uproar. In the past people’s impression, the wealthy eldest lady either inherited the family business or lived a secluded life, but Paris Hilton did not take the usual path and has been in the entertainment industry. She made cameo appearances in movies and in reality shows, but was tepid. After the “Video Door” incident, Paris Hilton was grounded at home again, crying that she had been greatly hurt, and seeing a psychiatrist for several months. However, this incident made her become a “Top stream” in the entertainment industry. After her comeback, she received a lot of media attention every time she attended an event, and the various reality shows she participated in also frequently created a ratings boom. At that time, all the lights were on Paris Hilton, and few people noticed her “little follower”, and no one would have thought that this “little follower” would have hundreds of millions of fans on social media more than 10 years later . This “little follower” is the second daughter of the Kardashian family, Kim Kardashian.
Kim Kardashian is Kris Jenner’s first daughter. Kim looks outstanding and has participated in various draft activities since his student days, but his grades are not ideal. After that, she occasionally played tricks in TV dramas and was regarded as a “marginal figure” in the entertainment industry. Until she accidentally met Paris Hilton at an event, and quickly became Hilton’s “best friend”, but next to this “top-tier wealthy daughter”, Kim Kardashian can only be regarded as a “little follower”. Although it’s just a follower, but where there is Hilton, there is no need to worry about media exposure. Gradually, Kim Kardashian gained some fame, at least in front of the media and the public.
In 2007, a dramatic scene appeared. Kim Kardashian’s sex tape with then-boyfriend Ray J was exposed, causing a lot of attention, and Kim Kardashian became an instant hit. She is worthy of being Paris Hilton’s best friend, and she operates in the same way-some people say that Kim Kardashian’s “Video Door” is directed and acted by herself, but others say that she was cheated by her boyfriend. The “Video Door” incident caused a lot of uproar and spread all over the United States. While Kim Kardashian angrily denounced her boyfriend and the media, mom Kris Jenner quickly collaborated with TV to produce the reality show Keeping Up With the Kardashians, which aired in the same year. The show reached 3.5 million viewers, making it one of the highest-rated reality shows at the time. With the drive of these events, the women of the Kardashian family have stepped onto the front desk one after another, and the Kardashian family’s “road to the top” in the entertainment industry has begun.
The head of the family – mother Kris Jenner arranged her own “personality” for each child: the eldest daughter Kourtney Kardashian is the main female character; the second daughter Kim Kardashian is The top of the family is the “locomotive” that drives the popularity of the family. Fashion, makeup, gossip, and scandals, she will be there wherever there is a hot spot; the third daughter, Khloe Kardashian, always falls in love with sports stars, bringing sports fans to the world. And the attention of the media has also attracted the attention; the fourth daughter Kendall Jenner is outstanding in appearance, focusing on fashion and modeling; the youngest daughter Kylie Jenner focuses on social media, and the label of “business genius and beautiful girl” is firmly established firmly attached to her body. Kris Jenner is very forward-looking. When social media was just launched, he registered an account for each daughter and participated in the operation. She also understands the operation mode of social media very well. Gossip and hype are eternal themes, and even the “Kardashian effect” has been reported – “Which sports star a girl in the Kardashian family falls in love with, which star is on the team Can win the championship.” Of course, this hype method has also been criticized by many people, but the Kardashian family’s approach is: “The more you scold me, the happier I am, because finally there is a new topic.
” After becoming a “top stream”, Kris Jenner began to “monetize traffic.” In the show, you can see the luxurious life of these sisters, and you can also see a few people intrigue, they fight, cheat, gossip, divorce… how the blood comes from. Although the audience knew that it was all acting, and accused the show of being vulgar, most people scolded and couldn’t help turning on the TV to watch how these sisters “behaved”. The explosive performance of the program has made the production cost continue to rise, and the TV station has paid hundreds of millions of dollars in remuneration and profit to the Kardashian family.
In addition to the “golden beast” of “Walking with the Kardashians”, in other fields, Kris Jenner also directed his daughters to make a lot of money. As the mainstay of the family, the second daughter, Kim Kardashian, quickly surpassed 100 million fans. The price of a product promotion on social media is as high as hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars, and her net worth exceeds that of many traditional top brands Celebrities, even Paris Hilton, who regarded her as a sidekick at the time, frequently courted her, and achieved the legendary story of “little sidekick’s counterattack”. Fourth daughter Kendall Jenner took over the endorsement as a model and became one of the most profitable models. The youngest daughter, Kylie Jenner, has makeup tailored by her mother, and is worth $900 million by virtue of her family’s fame. She was named a “talented self-made woman” by Forbes magazine and broke her face. Book founder Mark Zuckerberg’s record as “youngest billionaire”.
All in all, in addition to Kris Jenner’s excellent business acumen, the Kardashian family’s main secret to success is “not afraid that you don’t like it, just that you don’t pay attention.” There were reports that Kim Kardashian had plastic surgery on her buttocks, so she went to the hospital to take x-rays and put them on social media; someone said that Kylie Jenner had a lip correction, she admitted it generously and also released related lipstick products; even the stepfather Bruce Jenner, who has always been a foil in the family, released himself after his divorce from Chris and appeared in the image of a woman-although I don’t know if this was arranged by the family, But it does bring huge traffic and benefits. Today, when the Internet in various countries is discussing controversial “Internet celebrities” and accusing “hype traffic”, netizens will ridicule disdainfully: “You guys are all the rest of the Kardashian family.”
Li Jiaqi in the live broadcast. The e-commerce anchor represented by him has once again empowered and lit up traditional e-commerce, becoming a bright color of the new economy in the post-epidemic era.
Live broadcast with goods, absorb gold and realize cash
The media environment in different countries is different, and it is not so easy to achieve the first pot of gold by recording reality shows like the Kardashian family. However, relying on the rapid development of the Internet and a strong supply chain level, domestic Internet celebrities have found a new means of monetizing traffic—carrying goods.
At the beginning, the income of Internet celebrities was mainly based on the subsidy of website clicks and advertising promotion, but as the number of Internet celebrities increased, the cake was not enough. In 2014, with the further acceleration of my country’s network, the live broadcast industry began to emerge. The first live broadcast was mainly based on game live broadcast, and a game anchor named Dong Xiaosa started to open a snack shop on Taobao and advertised his products during the live broadcast. With the support of fans, his Taobao store has achieved millions of sales from zero in just over a year. After seeing this business opportunity, many game anchors began to follow suit. For a while, snack shops with various game live broadcasts on Taobao sprang up like mushrooms after a rain. At that time, the snacks sold by game anchors were very similar, mainly meat muffins. Therefore, for a long time, fans called game anchors “cake sellers”. In the same year, Weibo Internet celebrities opened clothing stores on Taobao platform. This form of guiding fans to shop after gaining a large number of fans quickly became the main method for Internet celebrities to make money. The concept of “Internet celebrities bringing goods” officially took off. on the stage of history.
The KDA girl group launched by “League of Legends”.
With light pink fluff, big shiny blue eyes, and a big fluffy tail, Lingna Belle’s image attracted enough attention as soon as it appeared, and became a favorite of many netizens. Under the fanatical love of fans, people discovered the business opportunities contained in it.
Subsequently, with the rapid development of the mobile Internet, live broadcasts and short videos have become the main means of creating “Internet celebrities”, and “Internet celebrities bringing goods” has also entered the 2.0 stage. In 2015, when the Taobao store of “Dong Xiaosa and Zhang Dayi” made a monthly income of one million, Li Jiaqi, who was born in Yueyang, Hunan, was still a “cabinet brother” at the cosmetics counter. Relying on his natural affinity and willingness to try lipstick colors for customers, he has won the sales champion of the counter many times, but at that time, no one would have thought that the name Li Jiaqi would cause a wave in the whole country. After that, Li Jiaqi participated in the “Internet Celebrity Beauty Talent” program. In 2016, the company provided the opportunity to bring goods online through live broadcast, and Li Jiaqi also participated in it. About 200 people participated in the project at first, but most people stopped in the face of unknown industry prospects, but Li Jiaqi chose to persevere. Unexpectedly, he quickly received tens of thousands of customers online. In 2017, the opportunity for change appeared again: do you want to give up your small business in the local area and become a more professional live broadcast anchor in Shanghai? Li Jiaqi chose to try in the tangle: “I remember when I first arrived in Shanghai on June 1, 2017, I only had a meal in 15 minutes, and I started the live broadcast without packing my luggage.”
As a male, Li Jiaqi put on lipstick in front of the camera It has also been misunderstood by others, but his persistence and efforts made him finally catch up with the “window”. In 2018, live streaming has become the main mode of Taobao platform, and Li Jiaqi, as one of the pioneers in the industry, has become a key target. In the “Tmall Double 11 Annual Ceremony” that year, Li Jiaqi, as the representative of the anchor, launched a “lipstick selling contest” with Jack Ma, establishing his status as “the first brother with goods”. Relying on the interesting style and the same affinity as always during the live broadcast, Li Jiaqi’s “carrying goods” career is booming, and even his catchphrase “OH MY GOD” has become the buzzword of the year. Some netizens joked that in the beauty industry, “I am not afraid of the sky, but I am afraid of Jiaqi OH MY GOD”. Relying on China’s developed e-commerce and strong logistics system, live streaming has become the mainstream trend of e-commerce in recent years. Even CCTV has sent news anchors to join hands with Li Jiaqi to help the poverty alleviation plan.
Virtual idols become the future of internet celebrities
Today, with huge commercial interests, Internet celebrities have formed an industrial chain, and traffic has become the most fierce “battlefield” on the Internet. Whether it’s a star or an internet celebrity, it seems that it doesn’t matter whether there are works or not, as long as there is traffic, there will be enough commercial value. It is no wonder that some people ridicule that the current era is “celebrity of celebrities and celebrities of internet celebrities”.
When talking about “four-character top-notch” before, people would think of Yi Yangqianxi and Di Ali Gerba, but in 2021, the title of “four-character top-notch” belongs to a fox named Lingna Belle. Lingna Belle is a virtual idol launched by Disney. Once launched, it has become popular all over the Internet. Whether it is social media or short video platforms, this little fox has reached the point of “swiping the screen”. Compared with the traffic obtained, Linnabelle has also brought huge benefits to Disneyland. Its toys and peripheral products have been snapped up. Even if a large number of scalpers sell at a higher price, Lingnabelle is also hard to find. So, what is the magic of this little fox?
As the king of the animation industry, Disney’s launch of virtual idols is nothing new, but Lina Belle is very different from traditional Disney virtual idols. Whether it’s Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, who has been around for decades, or Elsa, the head of the Frozen Kingdom in recent years, Disney’s virtual idols are all drawn from animation works. But Lena Belle is different. It has no background, story and works like the “Duffy Family” where it belongs. They are just cartoon characters selling cute to tourists at Disneyland. However, nothing has prevented the success of the “Duffy Family”. In 2018, the Duffy family launched the rabbit image “Xingdailu”. It is said that the total height of Xingdailu sold in just a few years is equivalent to 119 Mount Everests. And Lena Belle is Disney’s success in re-enacting Xingdailu.
Upon closer inspection, this promotion method is exactly the same as that of “traffic stars”, and even draws on the marketing model of “tide brand”. Disney has adopted a limited purchase strategy for Lena Belle, with a limit of 2 per person. For a time, there was a long queue in the Disneyland store, and even the scalpers who were “nothing to lose” complained that Lina Belle was too difficult to grab. Such “hard to find” hunger marketing has made Lingna Belle a tool for people to show off and compare, and many industry insiders even began to take Lingna Belle as a research topic.
Although it became popular overnight with the help of Disney’s strong brand image, from the perspective of the world of virtual idols, Lingna Belle is just a “new generation” who has not yet established itself. As early as 1984, Japan’s first virtual idol, Lin Mingmei, was born. Lin Mingmei is the heroine of the animation work “Macro Fortress”. In the animation work, Lin Mingmei is the idol in “Battlestar”, known for her beautiful appearance and moving voice. With the influence of “Macro Fortress”, the producer used Lin Mingmei’s animation image and the voice of seiyuu Maru Iijima to release Lin Mingmei’s music album, and achieved good sales. It is the first time that animation peripherals have become virtual idols. Transformation attempt. In 2007, Japan’s Yamaha introduced the technology of speech synthesis, and the first virtual idol Hatsune Miku with its own image and voice was born, and it has firmly occupied the top spot of virtual idols since its birth. With the development of technology, Hatsune Miku, a virtual idol, even held his first concert with semi-holographic projection technology, and the boundary between virtual and reality has since become blurred.
After that, more and more virtual idols came one after another: Luo Tianyi, the first virtual idol in China, the KDA girl group, a virtual idol launched by the game “League of Legends”, and even in South Korea, where the competition among idol groups is very fierce, the first virtual girl was also launched. Mission AESPA.
At the moment, virtual idols may not be enough to shake the entire cultural market. However, at the end of 2021, the international social networking giant Facebook expressed its full efforts to develop the concept of “metaverse” – even the company name was changed to “Meta” in order to express its determination , many domestic and foreign Internet giants have followed suit, creating a “virtual world” seems to have become the consensus of all Internet giants. In the “virtual world”, it seems natural to have all kinds of virtual idols. Perhaps for a long time in the future, virtual idols will become a new challenge for Internet celebrities.