Celebrity Opinion Leaders

Posted by on Jan 29, 2018 in ComLead, Integrated Marketing Communication

Celebrity Opinion Leaders

In today’s age of social media, an opinion leader tends to be the person who has the most amount of followers. These people can share anything as simple as a photo of their coffee cup and still receive massive amounts of feedback because their fans, for whatever reason, care about what they have to say.

So when these opinion leaders – often times celebrities – speak on political matters is that a good or a bad thing? Sure your Grammy nominees may not actually know much about politics but their followers listen to them. And when their followers see their favorite stars speaking up about sexual assault or gender equality then their opinions on those matters are impacted. For some it could reinforce their already predisposed opinions, but for others it could change their mind and make them see things differently. For whatever reason though many people feel that it isn’t a celebrity’s place to speak out on the matters of politics. After all they are just entertainers so shouldn’t they just entertain?

If the world was much simpler then maybe that would be the proper behavior. But in reality a celebrity is a human being too. And with being human they are also mothers, fathers, siblings, friends, and so much more. So why shouldn’t they speak out on issues that affect them and the people around them?

Maybe award shows do not need to be laced with political statements. Maybe that takes away from the actual entertainment matter such as the movies or the music. But if you are lucky enough to have a platform and a voice then why should you not take advantage of it? And if you are not speaking about these systemic issues at major events such as the Grammys where millions are watching, then where are you?

The Grammys is a night to celebrate the achievements of the music industry, but the music industry isn’t just about the hit singles. It is about the human beings behind each of those records. And when you have a Grammy nominee such as Kesha who publicly battled with her sexual abuser while also battling with him behind closed doors, then you have a perfect stage to make an impact.

It does not matter if it is an awards show or a commercial during the Super Bowl, we have the freedom to use our voices so we should use them for the issues that matter the most to us, celebrities included.

Devon Bradley, M.S. Communication & Leadership ’19

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