What’s social media all about? Keeping in touch with your family and friends, as well as making new connections, right? Well, it should be. But just like the internet, social media is a rusty double-edged sword laced with toxic goo—far from everything is as wholesome as the cat pictures you’ll find on Bored Panda.
Most people want to be loved, adored, and to be in the spotlight. In short, they want attention and adoration. Unfortunately, a sizeable chunk of humankind is prepared to do anything for that, morals, common sense, and decency be damned.
From acting plain idiotic to doing some downright immoral stuff that would make the local priest splash them with holy water, the people who are prepared to go to extreme lengths just for internet fame end up on the r/justforsocialmedia subreddit. Check out the best of the worst below, upvote the ones that impressed you with their awfulness the most, and share any similar stories in the comment section.
Bored Panda spoke about why some people tend to do pretty much anything for a splash of fame with redditor Blank-Cheque, one of the moderators at the 'Just For Social Media' subreddit. According to them, the internet is a contributing factor in hunting for attention. "I'd say a lot of these people would've done stupid stuff anyway, but the internet gives them extra incentive and lets them share it with others." Scroll down for their other insights.
Subreddit moderator Blank-Cheque said that the internet has opened up a lot of different avenues for shooting to fame and glory through social media. All because of the changes in technology and the commodification of attention. "Seems like there's more fame to go around now, so it's easier for people to become briefly famous. Not sure if there are more people doing it but certainly more are successful."
What's more, the moderator doesn't believe that the people featured on the subreddit are giving up their morals in exchange for attention. Rather, "they may not have had them in the first place."
The ‘Just For Social Media’ online community on Reddit has 97.5k members and, even though they enjoy poking fun at people who are prepared to do pretty much anything for a sackful of silver and their 15 minutes of fame, they have some strict guidelines, too. So no sharing personal information for one, no matter how much you think that person might deserve it.
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According to researchers, social media gives everyone the tools to live a life of constant exposure where they curate their experiences and are more and more worried about their visibility.
Of course, attention has its perks. They’re not just financial. We’re social animals, so we equate attention, likes, comments, and exposure with approval. And we’re hardwired to want approval because that means we’re more likely to not only survive but also thrive. However, there is a darker side to becoming famous on the internet.
Public opinion can shift at the drop of a hat and the approval you were soaking in just a moment ago can turn into criticism, threats, and even… forcing you to delete your social media accounts. Meanwhile, Psychology Today explains that a careless tweet or a dumb social media post can cost you your job even years down the line.
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Playing around with fame on social media is a bit like a wish granted to you by the infamous monkey’s paw: be careful what you wish for—because you won’t foresee some of the consequences. Make sure you really want to get famous before you do something dumb for the attention. And remember, your morals are worth more than fleeting fame.