I’ve been making videos for about 3.5 years now, and while YouTube provides hours of entertainment and is a great resources I need to talk about how YOUTUBE BEAUTY GURUS ARE NOT REAL!
I’m not saying that the YouTubers themselves are being fake. (Some have been accused oif being fake, but that’s not what this post is about.) I’m saying that social media, as a medium, is not real, and can’t be. Unless you livestreamed your life 24-7 there is not way to be 100% real online. And that’t not an issue as long as you, as a viewer and member of the community, understand that.
Social media is hailed as being more authentic hen traditional media because it gives practically anyone the ability to make something and post it online for the world to see.
Ten years ago popular Beauty Gurus (and YouTubers in general) would film a video on their webcam and post it with minimal-to-no editing. These days the “standard” video has at lease a minimum amount of production value, including lighting, camera equipment and often fancy editing.
Is there a problem with the upscale in video quality and time that goes into it? NO! What is a problem is that even through we logically know these videos are produced and edited, it’s still hard to separate what we see on the screen from reality.
It’s the same issue we’ve been trying to address in regular media, except now everyone has access to the same tools. Fifteen years ago I taught myself how to airbrush pictures in Photoshop. This was before smartphones even existed, let alone photo editing apps. Back then it was a specialized skill. Now simple image correction in Photoshop is obsolete because everyone has the ability to to remove pimples, lighten teeth and add some eyeliner right from their phone. And don’t forget the fact the picture what taken on your phone in the first place. Altering pictures went from a something that took time and skill to master to something a 13 year old could do and post online in 5 minutes.
I don’t need to preach about what trying to live up to unattainable standards can do, we’ve all heard that already.
What I do want you to encourage you to do is to think about how the media you consume was created. Just because a beauty guru films a video in her bedroom doesn’t mean it isn’t a full 1-woman production, complete with lighting, fancy equipment and professional editing tools. Don’t assume that if you only see one person on camera that they’re the only person working on that content. Also remember that as real as most videos are, it’s impossible to capture an entire person in a 5-10 minute video. Even 50 5-10 minute videos will only show you a fraction of who we are as people. You don’t see our bad days, and if you do you probably don’t need the REALLY BAD days. And that’s OK…as long as the audience knows.
What do you think?