Tuesday, 28 September, 2021
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OPINION

Leverage Of Celebrities



Dixya Poudel

During a Euro 2020 press conference sometime back, the renowned football player Cristiano Ronaldo opted for water instead of Coca Cola sending the internet in frenzy. His preference of water over Coca Cola even affected the share price of Coca Cola Company which fell by $4 billion. It certainly cost the company dearly. And it showed the influence, market value and command that celebrities have over the world, financially or otherwise.
Celebrities are people who have gained fame through their work, lifestyle and glamour. Mostly they are people in the entertainment business who are known for their skills in the media such as movies, music, television, sports, literature and so on. Then there are business tycoons with global financial influence and politicians with political clout.

People love famous people for their glamour and talent. They love to talk about celebrities and the celebrity gossips often fuel the media. Today social media has become a haven for growing a celebrity status. Most famous people make their presence known through posts, shares and tweets in the digital media. And the truth is the entertainment media is one of the fastest route to celebrity hood. With every successful film, song, album and TV show, there are countless rising stars who become famous overnight.

Then there are people who earn their fame on the screens of mobiles, iPads, tablets etc. through social media sites such as YouTube, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. With fame comes the leverage to influence the masses. As seen in Cristiano Ronaldo's snub of the carbonated drink, the Coca Cola Company's share price plummeted by billions. Thus it isn't surprising that the giant companies and corporations offer endorsement contracts to celebrities for financial gains.

Likewise, people often talk about celebrities and it isn't always kind. Often with eminence come critics and slanderers as well. It is human nature to gossip which is why it sells in the media. If one is to tune to television, radio or the social media, one can find people vilifying, critiquing and spreading rumours and controversies about celebrities and their lifestyle, relationships and work. The comment sections of social media can be especially vile which is why celebrities often confess to being bullied online.

It is unfortunate that the people who entertain the world have to face constant abuse and bullying through unkind and debasing comments. Most of the youth aspires to celebrity status since it means fame, glamour, financial security and a chance to create a legacy.
But the perils of celebrity are quite a risk and one can often hear of famous people falling prey to exhaustion, stress, anxiety and depression. The road to fame is certainly paved with trials.

However with the right message, celebrities can channel their fame for the good of humanity. They can share and rally for a cause that is most dear to them. Thus NGOs and INGOs elect brand ambassadors for welfare and humanitarian acts. Even the UN organisations have celebrities working tirelessly as their brand ambassadors. A beautiful appearance, unmatched talent, a bit of luck and the right choices can catapult a person to the heights of celebrity. However, what matters is what they do with their fame. In the glamour of the lights, it is up to them to leverage their celebrity.