This post about The Dark Side of Social Media: Celebrity scammers. What’s in the background? How to handle them? etc.
Have you ever heard the expression “All that glitters is not gold”?
The aphorism stating that not everything that looks precious or true turns out to be so, which is true in the digital age and the social media world, where anyone can be a celebrity. Anyone can sign up with a name, password to create a user account and start their activities, which is legal or not.
…but they are verified…
In the digital Space illegal activities might be much easier to be covered. For example, if someone says he/she is a celebrity and there is a verification sign, then you start to automatically trust in them, right?
Most people think like this, but you do not do this.
Even if there is a verification sign, it does not mean anything…. how do you know who they really are, and even if it is true how do you know celebrities are good people, who want only good things from you?
Start to think about it, how celebrities are made of?
They achieved and reached something to be there, where they are now. They have usually much more experiences with meeting other people, much more connections, circles, they know more how human behaviour works, than average users.
It is either, because they achieved their results in that way or met much more people than you, who might meet every day with 10 or 20. They meet every day with different kind of people from brand managers through event managers to journalists, make-up artists, stylists etc. Their life is public, but their private life is private.
Whatever you see from them on the internet is a well-structured and built image. Their brand managers, partners, social media managers, all the PR team work on their image and themselves for years to make the most out of it. You are a consumer, who buy their products. Whatever you get is a consumer product.
Who are You in the digital Space?
Just think about this a little bit. I am trying to help you to gain a little awareness. You are a user, a consumer, who consume a product, a service or anything else. Celebrities need your attention and they pay a lot of money for that attention year by year. They are paying dollar millions to maintain their well-built image, to be able to sell their products, services, music, brands, clothes, cars, whatever they want for you etc. to build their own empire.
When you sign up, log in to social media, then you are a product, you sell your time, and attention for free on the digital playground for digital content creators, celebrities, producers etc.
Celebrities “pay” to
- social media sites for your time, and attention to advertise there,
- to influencers to watch them more, use their products, be engaged etc.
It’s a huge business.
Celebrities are there for a reason. This reason sometimes not that good and all about results, but several times the reason is how good they were able to use out others time, money, attention, how good they are in manipulation etc. how good they are using the system in which they are living in…
Celebrities several times use other people and throw them away. Not all obviously, but a lot.
How many times have we heared about sexual exploitation from celebrities, abuse, misuse of power, money, breach of trust, bribing, fraud and etc.? A lot.
Some of them use others for one or two occasions, while others are using someone else for years or decades, but the good news that You can make a decision not to be exploited.
Never ever forgot that celebrities are still humans with human behaviour. They can manipulate you to do what they want from you, to follow them, buy and use their products, services etc.
You might start your social media activities to be able to connect with your friends, be inspired or advertise your services or products, etc. and celebrities are on social media for similar reasons too.
They are there to advertise their products, services, clothes and car brands, cosmetics etc.
When you think about celebrities or scammers or celebrity scammers and before signing up or log in to your social media, you should always be aware what is good for you, your mental health, and your own financial health.
You need to take responsibility for your own actions what you are doing in the digital Space.
Let’s say you are younger than 18 (or in some countries 21), you are against a manipulator with far less experiences what your parents have, so don’t try to be an adult, just don’t get into any manipulation.
Protect yourself from strangers and don’t allow others know any of your personal information. None of their business.
Why am I writing about this topic at all?
There were on the Human Behaviour & Life (previously Psychology) Space:
“A celebrity actor who is 30 years older than me is cyberstalking me on social media and trying to lure me to meet him at hotels. What should I do? He is extremely narcissistic and scares me.”
I am telling you now and don’t forget ever just because someone is a celebrity or verified it does not mean they are real.
It does not mean you speak with a celebrity; it does not mean that celebrity is a good person, it does not mean they have good intentions, or they are not scammers etc.
So, if that “celebrity” starts to do anything disturbing e.g.: stalking, abusing, threatening, etc. etc., then
- You have the right to protect yourself and your peace.
- You have the right to ban this person on social media.
- You have the right to report to the police. You do not have to wait until social media companies help you. They need time to investigate things.
- You need to help on yourself. If you are under 18 and your parents do not think this is dangerous, or you do not have parents, and you feel this is harmful, then go to the police, or someone you trust (counsellor at schools or teachers) and ask help to report to the police this harmful activity.
Whenever you start to “chat” with a “celebrity” even if that celebrity is the best and you are the nr. 1. fan, you need to be aware, that those are just accounts.
Anyone can be behind those accounts. Plus, they are total strangers and you cannot predict their behaviour from knowing their public “image”, which means that
You do not know them at all.
Responsibility of the family
There is a lot of questions in this topic….
Why do my parents so strict?
If your parents strict they are strict for a reason. You do not know what you do not know about life and people.
Parents have much more experiences about life as they have gained throughout the years/decades.
They are there for a reason to protect your health: physical and mental too. They are responsible for you. You might think they are strict, but they could have had experiences that they think now protecting you is more important than not doing this. Overprotection is not a clever idea, but not protecting neither.
Do you know how difficult to find out what is enough regarding protection?
Your parents love you and want the best for you, so just think for a minute why they are doing what they are doing…you don’t know a lot of things about life. They follow rules which protect you from bad people and good for your mental health, but because of this you might think everyone is like your kind etc.
That’s not true. Life is a dangerous place several times, not what you get used to, when you were young.
Your parents are humans, so you can try to communicate more with them if you have doubts about strictness to let you grow up, but do not ask this when you are still young. Not worth.
How to use social media with responsibility?
If you ever have a chance to speak/chat with a “celebrity” on social media, the first thing is to keep in mind:
- Do not trust celebrities! Even if they are verified! How do you know the celebrity account connected to the real celebrity? How do you know the real celebrity has the/an account? Ah you are telling because it is verified…?
Now I am telling you something, which you might never knew before. There are 3rd party verification services out there…
Ah yes now you start to think….that is good. We need to achieve that you always think ahead when you are surfing on the internet, or you are on social media or dating apps! Never act fast. Never give out personal information what you will regret later.
Rights regarding your pictures
Never send pics, which can be used against you e.g.: nudes, mostly if you are a teenager, because if you are an adult, I assume you know what you are doing and can take responsibility for your actions.
If you did as a teenager speak with your parents. Do not worry. Everyone makes failures. This is not the end of the world, but next time just do not do it. 🤷♀️ They can’t use against you, OK they can illegally, but this doesn’t mean you don’t have rights, which protects you if someone threatens you with your own pictures.
The solution is not that you cry all day and do something bad against yourself. The solution is speaking with adults whom you trust since years and trying to find a solution together.
- Always think ahead & never trust because most people are total strangers for you.
- There are a lot of scammers, cheaters, fraudsters, stealers, and people who can threaten you etc.
First of all, you do not know if a celebrity is a good person or a bad one.
You do not know if an account represents the celebrity or someone else created it and somehow achieved to be verified (with money, connections etc.)!!!
You never know who is on the other side. NEVER!!!!
So, if a celebrity starts to speak with you, have a thought in your mind, that the celebrity is NOT a celebrity. A lot of celebrities are very private in real life.
They will NOT spend their precious FREE TIME to speak with you. That is the REALITY!!! 🤷♀️
The good thing that from now you can be aware, that people who are saying they are someone, might not that someone. Even if they confirm or verify their identity with identification card, passport etc. they can be someone else easily in the digital age. Passports can be created from scratch, photoshopped, stolen etc.
Do not Sell your Trust
- Whenever you are speaking with a celebrity be aware, that they might be scammers and want to manipulate you or create an emotion in you to GAIN YOUR TRUST. It is a built-up strategy for them to gain trust. To gain your trust there are psychological manipulation techniques.
- Whenever you are thinking you speak with a celebrity: NEVER I REPEAT NEVER speak about your own mood, emotions, emotional problems, personal information, financial situation, financial data, where are you, where your parents are to strangers.
- Never send your credit card numbers, passwords, nude pictures, videos or personal data about yourself, friends, family…
- Never send money, because a “celebrity” or a “soldier” or your next “wife” stuck in another country…except if that is really your wife. xD
- You never know who is on the other side!
- Celebrities and scammers and mostly celebrity scammers are lying a lot to gain Your trust, and to achieve their GOALS!!! They don’t care about you. They care about themselves.
- Observe people from the distance and protect yourself.
The Dark Side of Social Media
What would a celebrity or a scammer wants from you?
Easy. Your trust, if they gain your trust you lost in their game, you can lose everything in a minute you start to trust in them, so never give out your trust, because a “celebrity” or scammer writing to you, or talking to you on a video call!
Fraudsters on pictures and videos
There are video call apps and softwares where people can use another people video and you would not recognize this ON a video call. Read more about it here.
Scammers or others can use AI apps to create a video, where you see celebrities instead of them. Luckily, we can read about How to recognize fake AI-generated images from Kyle McDonald on Medium, but still not easy always to realize you might be cheated on by scammers. This means that scammers can persuade average users like you, that they are celebrities on a VIDEO CALL, even if they are not.
Anytime someone wants your trust, help, money or anything else you need to be aware that “it takes two to tango”, which means you need to protect yourself, from those people as no one else will.
Even if your parents protect you physically, they can’t do this if you share any of your information and let others know your personal information. 🤷♀️ So please just don’t share! Share a good story with your friends instead of strangers.
You need to report to the police if need to. If someone wants something from you to do something fast to them. Do not do it. Please go out. Take a short or long walk. Start to think. Never act fast. Never.
Give yourself time. Speak with your friends. If your parents old, and do not use digital space do not speak with them. If your parents are in digital Spaces then speak with them.
Only act fast to protect yourself from psychological manipulation techniques and scammers who are practicing on you!
That is how you will be responsible for your own life and safety.
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