Connect with us


Do You Need Massive Followers On Social Media To Be Creditable? – Forbes



Social media has in many ways become a digital religion, perhaps even a cult, at least in terms of how people value the power of likes and followers. This is absolutely true on Twitter, where the number of followers someone has is seemingly tied to their credibility – rather than what the actual message says.

As a result those who may make a good point could be easily and readily dismissed simply because of their lack of followers. On the flip side, those who “work it” and try to get followers – akin to digital apostles – can be declared more credible because so many people follow them.

But is this credible?

“A large number of followers may suggest credibility through a persuasive strategy called ‘social proof,” explained Dr. Leilani Carver, director of Graduate Strategic Communication and Leadership at Maryville University. “Social proof, popularized by professor of influence Dr. Cialdini, is the idea that if someone is unsure about what they should do – e.g., should I buy this widget? – they will look to others to see what they do – e.g., how many people bought the widget and what review was it given?. Then, if many people complete an action, or believe something, they are likely to do the same.”

This can translate into a large following on social media, as some users are likely to make the assumption that if someone has a large following they are worthy of being followed.

“One problem with granting this credibility based upon numbers is that there are ways to cheat the system and inflate your numbers – e.g., buying followers – so follower engagement is actually a much better read of influence regarding marketing strategy. However, the greater issue may be that the person with the large following is simply not a credible source,” added Carver.

In other words, just because you have influence does not make you an expert. And just because you have followers may not make you credible on a subject.

“If there is a relationship between credibility and the number of followers a person has on social media, it is probably an inverse relationship. In other words, the more followers somebody has, the less credible they probably are,” added technology industry analyst Josh Crandall of Netpop Research.

“There are some who have a lot of integrity for facts and science and amass a sizable following online such as Neil deGrasse Tyson (~14.2M Twitter) and Richard Dawkins (~2.9M), but the vast majority of popular influencers are building their followers through the cult of celebrity – Kylie Jenner (~39.2M) or the power of bombastic rhetoric – Joe Rogan (~7.6M),” Crandall noted. “In fact, more than half of the 50 most popular twitter accounts are those of celebrities, musicians or sports figures. I’m not sure what credibility these people have other than presenting their own opinions. And based on what we have seen in the recent past – think Gina Carano – those opinions can be highly subjective and suspect at times.”

Carver also noted Kylie Jenner’s half sister Khloe Karadashian has some 192 million followers on Instagram.

“Khloe often promotes waist trainers on Instagram,” said Carver. “Yet, a credible physician and wellness expert, Dr. Alok Patel, reports that waist trainers have no scientific backing, are not effective and may actually be harmful. Dr. Patel, while being a very vocal advocate of health has only 22,400 followers on Instagram, compared to Khole’s 192 million. Dr. Patel is a credible source regarding waist trainers and health and yet has drastically fewer followers. Dr. Patel does use the persuasive strategy of authority (e.g., credibility through a title and/or degree). However, the reality is that falsehoods spread faster and more broadly than the truth.”

Emphasis On Numbers Not Content

As noted, the issue is that too much emphasis on the credibility and influence is based solely on the followers. Thus the beautiful and popular immediately have an advantage.

However, this shouldn’t come as a surprise due to the increased use of social media, especially by the youth.

“Today, the first thing an individual checks before doing business with you is your social footprint,” warned technology entrepreneur Lon Sakfo, author of The Social Media Bible. “Several years ago, before the maturity of the social platform, it was called your ‘digital footprint.'”

Safko noted that in the past if someone searched for him, Safko’s Google digital footprint had around 185,000 indexed pages that mentioned him for his various works.

“Now that Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other platforms become fully established my digital footprint is now weighed heavily on these three,” he added.

Thus, while Safko is a published author of multiple books, his credibility index could be weighed against those who simply have lots of Facebook friends, Twitter followers and LinkedIn connections.

Reliance on Metrics

None of this would be a serious problem, except so much emphasis is placed on followers, likes, shares, etc. This can impact the roles actors are given, impact whether stories written by journalists are actually taken seriously and most ominously our political future.

The world increasingly moves based on followers and likes, and the impact it could have

“Having impact means having power to affect meaningful and enduring change,” explained James R. Bailey, professor of leadership at the George Washington University School of Business.

“Charles Dickens didn’t have an Instagram account, but he almost single-handedly changed Britain’s labor laws,” said Bailey. “Donna Tartt, perhaps America’s greatest living author, has a Twitter account on which she has never posted. Congressman Dr. Michael Burgess from Texas – a fair-minded conservative who has had a substantial impact on US health care policy – has exactly 784 Twitter followers.”

Yet, for Safko, he said that trying to get a book published today is challenging, because the publishers are also caught up in followers and likes. “It must be large enough where they can assume, that with that size following you can sell 10,000 copies of your book. If you don’t have the following, then you are not considered.”

While it is true that someone with a huge number of followers could potentially have better chances of his/her/their book become a best seller, too often likes don’t translate into sales. That in itself is another problem.

But really, it all comes back on the fact that we’ve become fixated on, and even obsessive about social media metrics that should be seen as meaningless compared to other measures of one’s efforts.

“Can a salesperson’s success be measured by sales,” pondered Bailey. “Sure. Can an attorney’s productivity be measured by billable hours? Certainly. Can a professor’s contribution be measured by the number of books published? Maybe. But can someone’s impact be measured by social media followers? No. Nope. Never.”

Adblock test (Why?)

Source link

Continue Reading


Montréal Massacre anniversary: The media must play a key role in fighting femicide – The Conversation CA



On Dec. 6, 1989, an act of violent misogyny killed 14 young women at École Polytechnique at Université of Montréal.

This mass femicide, though carried out by a lone male, grew out of a societal environment of gender inequity, misogyny, colonialism, racism and other intersecting systems of oppression.

Femicide, which refers to the sex/gender-related killings of women and girls, does not occur out of the blue. Although media often portray femicides as spontaneous “crimes of passion” when men kill their female partners, these femicides are the culmination of a history of violence in more than 70 per cent of cases — and are more often crimes of control.

They are also often more likely to be premeditated than non-intimate partner killings. So many of these deaths are preventable, and we must use every tool at our disposal to increase public awareness and enhance prevention.

Holding officials to account

Public health efforts around the COVID-19 pandemic have illustrated the importance of clear messaging, prioritizing expert voices and holding political leaders and social institutions to account to save lives.

As these efforts continue, we once again mark Dec. 6, the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women, and reflect on the ongoing pandemic of male violence that continues to take the lives of women and girls worldwide.

a silhouette of a woman in seen beside a monument with christmas lights in the background
A woman stands next to the Women’s Monument in London, Ont., as people gather to mark the 25th anniversary of the ÉcolePolytechnique massacre in 2014.

Our work at the Canadian Femicide Observatory for Justice and Accountability keeps track of this extreme form of sex/gender-related violence. As is so evident with the COVID-19 pandemic, the media play a critical role in informing us about how threats are defined, what aspects to pay attention to and how to deal with a given problem.

In short, the media frame the problem and suggest the solutions. As such, the media can be a key mechanism for primary prevention, but only if the problem is represented accurately.

In covering femicide, media have a leading role, not only in awareness and education generally, but in actively shaping the construction of attitudes and beliefs that can help prevention efforts.

In contrast, harmful representations include those that portray these killings as isolated or individualized events, focus on victim behaviours to suggest (implicitly or explicitly) that they were to blame for their own death or marginalizing certain groups based on race, religion, socio-economic class, sex-trade involvement, sexual orientation and other factors.

There is also the matter of who isn’t represented at all. The “missing white girl syndrome” underscores that white, usually class-privileged victims receive copious amounts of media coverage while missing and murdered Indigenous, Black and other racialized women and girls are excluded from large-scale societal attention. Therefore, some women and girls remain invisible in life and death.

Girls and women in brightly coloured skirts hold drums as they walk.
Young girls walk together during the annual Women’s Memorial March in Vancouver in February 2021. The march is held to honour missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls with stops along the way to commemorate where women were last seen or found.

Media reporting on femicide is key

How reporters frame femicides is therefore critical for accurately informing the public. Media coverage of femicide has the potential to connect it to broader issues related to violence against women, thereby educating the public about these crimes, their broader societal causes, consequences and implications.

This media coverage might include terminology such as femicide, statistics on the number of women killed by intimate partners, domestic violence resources or new expert sources who are more qualified to speak on femicide, including front-line service providers, advocates and researchers.

In addition to providing more in-depth, empirically supported context about femicide, this type of coverage raises public awareness about the issue. It reports on femicides not as isolated incidents but more directly highlights community and societal solutions.

That can include funding services that help victims of violence, prevention education, legal reform and cultural change, such as targeting the attitudes that support or normalize violence against women.

Read more:
‘Home is the most dangerous place for women,’ but private and public violence are connected

As we remember those women and girls killed by violence in Canada, we can critically reflect on how their stories are told and how the media educate us about their deaths. We can move beyond relying on police narratives and cultural framings about femicide, drawing from the experiences and expertise of survivors and those who have lost loved ones to violence.

We can reduce sensational, graphic reporting of femicide and stop suggesting any victim’s actions, behaviours or lifestyles contributed to their deaths.

Femicide is a tragic loss of life. It is the most extreme act of violence against women, a human rights violation and part of a public health crisis. An accurate representation of this crime by the media must include perspectives that address all three of these areas.

Adblock test (Why?)

Source link

Continue Reading


Trump's social media venture says it has raised $1B – Vancouver Sun



He is working to launch a social media app called TRUTH Social that is at least several weeks away.

Article content

Donald Trump’s new social media venture said on Saturday it had entered into agreements to raise about $1 billion from a group of unidentified investors as it prepares to float in the U.S. stock market.


Article content

The capital raise, details of which were first reported by Reuters on Wednesday, underscored the former U.S. president’s ability to attract strong financial backing thanks to his personal and political brand. He is working to launch a social media app called TRUTH Social that is at least several weeks away.

Digital World Acquisition Corp, the blank-check acquisition firm that will take Trump Media & Technology Group Corp public by listing it in New York, said it will provide up to $293 million to the partnership with Trump’s media venture, taking the total proceeds to about $1.25 billion.

The $1 billion will be raised through a private investment in public equity (PIPE) transaction from “a diverse group of institutional investors,” Trump Media and Digital World said in a statement. They did not respond to requests to name the investors.


Article content

Trump Media inked its deal with Digital World to go public in October at a valuation of $875 million, including debt. The social media venture is now valued at almost $4 billion based on the price of Digital World shares at the end of trading on Friday. Trump supporters and day traders snapped up the stock.

Many Wall Street firms such as mutual funds and private equity firms snubbed the opportunity to invest in the PIPE. Among those investors who participated were hedge funds, family offices and high net-worth individuals, Reuters reported on Wednesday. Family offices manage the wealth of the very rich and their kin.

Some Wall Street investors are reluctant to associate with Trump. He was banned from top social media platforms after the Jan. 6 attack by his supporters on the U.S. Capitol amid concerns he would inspire further violence. The Capitol attack was based on unsubstantiated claims of widespread fraud in last year’s presidential election.


Article content

“As our balance sheet expands, Trump Media & Technology Group will be in a stronger position to fight back against the tyranny of Big Tech,” Trump said in a statement on Saturday.

The deal also faces regulatory risk. U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren asked Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Gary Gensler last month to investigate the planned merger for potential violations of securities laws around disclosure. The SEC has declined to comment on whether it plans any action.

We apologize, but this video has failed to load.

Trump Media and Digital World said the per-share conversion price of the convertible preferred stock PIPE transaction represents a 20% discount to Digital World’s volume-weighted average closing price for the five trading days to Dec. 1, when Reuters broke news of the capital raise.


Article content

If that price averages below $56 in the 10 days after the merger with Digital World has been completed, the discount will grow to 40% with a floor of $10, the companies added. Digital World shares ended trading on Friday $44.97.

Trump had 89 million followers on Twitter, 33 million on Facebook and 24.5 million on Instagram at the time he was blocked, according to a presentation on his company’s website.

Investors attending the confidential investor road shows were shown a demo from the planned social media app, which looked like a Twitter feed, Reuters reported.


Since Trump was voted out of office last year, he has repeatedly dropped hints that he might seek the presidency in 2024.

Special purpose acquisition companies such as Digital World had lost much of their luster with retail investors before the Trump media deal came along. Many of these investors were left with big losses after the companies that merged with SPACs failed to deliver on their ambitious financial projections.

TRUTH Social is scheduled for a full rollout in the first quarter of 2022. It is the first of three stages in the Trump Media plan, followed by a subscription video-on-demand service called TMTG+ that will feature entertainment, news and podcasts, according to the news release.

In a slide deck on its website, the company envisions eventually competing against’s AWS cloud service and Google Cloud.



Postmedia is committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion and encourage all readers to share their views on our articles. Comments may take up to an hour for moderation before appearing on the site. We ask you to keep your comments relevant and respectful. We have enabled email notifications—you will now receive an email if you receive a reply to your comment, there is an update to a comment thread you follow or if a user you follow comments. Visit our Community Guidelines for more information and details on how to adjust your email settings.

Adblock test (Why?)

Source link

Continue Reading


Trump social media company claims to raise $1bn from investors – The Guardian



[unable to retrieve full-text content]

Trump social media company claims to raise $1bn from investors  The Guardian

Source link

Continue Reading