At some point in our lives we’ve all said “I’m going to be famous”. For most of us, that will never happen. Frankly, we just don’t have the skill, looks, or money that our celebrity counterparts do. It’s not our fault. Justin Bieber is just better than us.
However, the increasing prevalence of the internet has answered the prayers of the countless people who just want their fifteen minutes of fame. The internet has saturated all aspects of society and is bringing those who use it into all aspects of society as well. The promise of fame is tantalizingly close. And, as Bennett points out in the article, “Architectures of Participation”, users now “have greater control over the image presented and constructed”. The individual now has greater access to fame as well as the ability to control how they are portrayed in their quest for fame.
Out of this has risen a sector of the internet dedicated to finding internet fame. A quick google of “how to be internet famous” results in over 600,000,000 hits. I perused the site wikkiHow, which claims to be able to teach you how to do ANYTHING. The authors lay out 10 simple steps! which will bring the reader to internet renown. Some of the steps seem fairly straightforward. It makes sense to try and understand any and all aspects of a computer, the internet, what it can and can’t do, etc. How can you become internet famous if you don’t know how to operate the medium which you are using? Others seem fairly self-explanatory. You should probably have some sort of skill or talent which will help to make you famous. Even if that skill is simply being able to market yourself well. Ultimately though, the wikkiHow article included very useful information about how to market oneself, maintaining realistic expectations for your fame level and the duration of your fame, how much effort actually goes in to being internet famous, and what sort of privacy changes one should expect.
Following these tips should, in theory, lead to internet fame. However, do they really work? I think, to an extent, these tips are incredibly helpful in laying out what must be done to be an internet sensation. The article points out several tips and factors which may not be considered by the average person searching for renown. Those who are looking for internet fame may not be aware of the intensive work which is often required to make it happen. In this way, the wikkiHow article is helpful. However, in some ways the article is incredibly general and overstates the ability for one to become famous. The fact of the matter is we’re not all Justin Bieber. We can’t simply upload videos of ourselves performing and assume that that will result in celebrity. There is an element of luck that is crucial to being an internet sensation. Can we all really be that lucky?