The Celebrity Double Standard

Famous people are often held to higher standards than other “normal” people. But why? They are people, just like we are, so why must they be held to a higher standard than the rest of us?

One of my guilty pleasures for the past few years has been watching makeup artists on Youtube. This started after I began watching Youtubers Jaclyn Hill and Kathleen Fuentes (KathleenLights on Youtube).

Both Youtubers have been wildly successful with over 7 million subscribers combined, several successful collaborations with makeup companies including Morphe and Colourpop, as well as Fuentes’ own nail polish company. So you could imagine my excitement when I heard that they were going to be filming a video together.

After the two finished filming, Hill, her husband, Fuentes and her husband all got together to hang, have some wine and try out Hill’s newly purchased virtual reality simulator. Hill posted several videos on Snapchat of Fuentes’ hilarious reactions to the simulation.

But, in one of these videos, Hill caught Fuentes saying the “n” word. You can hear Fuentes’ husband, Danny, immediately tell Hill not to post the video but she accidentally posted it anyway.

The backlash from this incident was outrageous. Both Youtubers apologized several times on numerous social media platforms. In one video Fuentes posted on Instagram, she said she was extremely ashamed of herself and doesn’t stand behind what she said. Despite their efforts, it seemed to do nothing to calm the furious fan base.

Obviously what Fuentes said wasn’t appropriate by any means, but she, just like everyone else, makes mistakes and her subscribers should learn to forgive and forget the comment. Not only has a large majority of her fanbase yet to forgive her, some fans have even gone far enough to leave nasty comments on social media calling Fuentes “fake” and “disgusting.”

If this were to happen to anyone other than an internet famous person, no one would’ve blinked an eye. But, because of Fuentes’ large following, she is suddenly held to these ridiculously high standards and is expected to be a perfect human being.

In the midst of all this drama, both Hill’s and Fuentes’ families had to be evacuated from the South Florida area due to Hurricane Irma. Because of the evacuation, neither Youtuber was able to post any of their typical weekly videos infuriating fans even more.

It’s insane how much fans expect of these people. Of course Youtube is their job and that is what they signed up for, but it’s unfair of fanbases to expect them to function as superhumans. To constantly be tweeting, snapping and DMing the two women about not posting their weekly video while they are preoccupied with making sure that their friends, family and houses are safe from the hurricane is outrageous and inconsiderate.

On a similar note, it infuriates me to see this kind of cyberbullying. Cyberbullying on a lower level has a completely different impact. If someone were to bully another student at Wittenberg, there’s a pretty good chance that other Witt students would stand up for that person and the bully would see social repercussions for his/her actions.

But, when someone bullies a famous person online, other fans are less likely to harp on the bully for their actions. So these fans are able to get away with their bullying, to some degree, because they aren’t being held accountable for their actions. Meanwhile, these Youtubers are at the receiving end of vicious bullying.

 

 

1 Comment

  1. Molly girl I’m going to need for you to have a seat.
    What you have no right to do is tell a group of people to forget a very nasty slur that was said. You have no right to assume that her status is the reason people harped on her, people are upset because that word is freely used without regard to the very ugly history attached to it. By large most people have forgiven her but those who haven’t have every right to feel betrayed. Kathleen is one of few youtube gurus that seem sincere and honest and sweet, and to have that word fall out of her mouth so easily is an affront to the people of color that watch her. It came to her so easily it made us wonder if this is something she says regularly.
    She was given just as hard a time as anyone else who’s been discovered using that language.
    YOU are putting her on a pedestal by wondering why she shouldn’t be held accountable for her actions. Celebrity or not we all need to be cognizant of what we say, when we say it, how we say it, and to whom we say it.
    Molly, if this didn’t personally offend you that’s fine, but don’t sit here and write to those of us whom it did offend and berate us for having reactions however public they may have been.

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