By Asiya Gedi, Staff Writer
Influencers have taken over social media, and it’s affecting today’s youth. Teenagers base their every decision--from what they wear to how they act--on their favorite celebrities. So, what causes us to rely so much on their opinions? The answer is simple: they are influencers.
Influencers are trendsetters that have accumulated millions of followers on a social media platform. Their main message is to spread positivity and try to form connections within the social media community. However, there are times when that façade can start to fade. Take Jake Paul for example. A former Disney Channel star, Paul faced great backlash in 2018 for “making his neighborhood a living hell.” These allegations came after Paul set furniture on fire for his YouTube Channel, which currently has nearly 20 million subscribers. Jake Paul has been notorious for being reckless, to say the least. More recently, Paul staged a marriage with fellow YouTuber Tana Mongeau for publicity.
While influencers usually get attention for making big mistakes, there are also those who try to get the fan base to do good for the world. Some examples include singers and actors who work for charity. This can get others to donate to charity, volunteer, or do other activities that help others.
Despite all the controversies that influencers face, students still love to watch their favorite influencers. Alex Talom, a junior varsity basketball player for Sheyenne, chose Dwyane Wade as his favorite influencer. He stated many reasons for this, but as a fellow basketball player, Talom said that he views him as a good person who tries to do good whenever possible. Most of the time, influencers are viewed as people who try to better the world. So, who is the most influential person in our age?
After speaking with a selection of Sheyenne students, nearly all stated that Donald Trump is the most influential person today. Their reasons varied, however; one student simply stated that he favors Donald Trump because he is “trying to make America great again.” It was made clear by the students that anything that the President does is put under a global spotlight, and these actions can be either positive or negative. Whether it be through his actions towards other leaders, or towards Americans, the students agreed that the president definitely has an impact on our society.
Influencer culture, the effect of influencers on their viewers, can be seen as both a positive and negative thing. According to students here at Sheyenne, influencer culture is mainly a positive idea. When asked who their favorite influencers were, the students chose people who they viewed as good people. So when can influencer culture turn bad? As with all people, influencers also do some things that they probably shouldn’t do. However, under the spotlight, a little mistake can turn into a huge scandal. Even worse, their actions can persuade others to also do wrong things.
For example, Johnson John, a student here at Sheyenne, said that influencer culture can be both a good and bad thing. He believes that Nelson Mandela is the most influential person of all time. He stated that he rose up and others listened. When asked about whether or not influencer culture was a good thing, John simply said, “You can look at Abraham Lincoln, or you can look at Adolf Hitler. They were both heard and followed.”
The Mustang Post
All feature news content is produced by students in the Newspaper program at West Fargo Sheyenne High School.