Commentary

Summer Camp For Wannabe Influencers - Yes, It's A Thing Now

Parents, now is the time to conduct a family inventory: does someone you know, and allow to live in your house rent-free, happen to enjoy live-streaming makeup tips on Facebook? Or posting sappy songs with an acoustic guitar on YouTube? Or like the idea of making millions of dollars for insulting video game characters?

Then cringe in fear, progenitors, because there is a summer camp especially designed to help aspiring online stars become social media influencers – and no, it is not a free program at the Y.

According to the Guardian, which first reported the news, the “Social Star Creator Camp” is launching this summer in Los Angeles (where else) and will soon set up shop in Britain, Japan, and Australia.

The 10-day-long camp costs $2,690 and offers classes and tips from successful social media influencers, technical training in areas like lighting and correct use of mobile devices and computers for producing video and photos, and pointers from brands looking to partner with influencers.

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The first session is scheduled for July 8-17 and will be hosted at the University of La Verne, located east of LA.

The camp is open to all manner of aspiring influencers, from budding comedians and actors to food and fashion bloggers, and has 300 spaces available for kids as young as 13, with several dozen spots already filled.

The promotional materials pretty much confirm that popularity is the sole measure of value in our brave new world: “The more people know you and love you, the more famous you are, right! All you have to do is to let your skill and your personality shine, trust yourself, be consistent and let the social users recognize your uniqueness.”

Let’s hope the campers learn a little about the FTC’s rules for consumer disclosure along the way, maybe with fun challenges like “how small can you write something and still claim it’s legible?” or “how to conceal boilerplate in the title and credits roll.”
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