In the old days, the cool kids might sit on the steps by the gymnasium, and the nerdy Stranger Things-style kids in the AV room.
Cue stereotypes about stealing lunch money, being thrown into a locker, and all that jazz.
Nowadays, much of the flexing takes place online, and if you’re rocking a blue tick you’ve got bragging rights.
If you want to sit with the cool kids in Los Angeles, you’ll need 20 000 Instagram followers, or a verified account.
Seriously – here’s CBS:
In a town that that’s filled with selfie-friendly murals and that even has a museum dedicated to the narcissist in all of us, this one is on a whole other level of social media effrontery, at least for the Insta-laypersons.
VICE writer Justin Caffier posted a photo of himself in front of “a new security-guarded mural in LA that only allows influencers and verifieds to take pics in front of it.”
Here are the pictures from his tweet:
And the kicker:
It’s the modern-day version of the scene from Forrest Gump, when that kid goes ‘you can’t sit here’.
Also, was Jenny a bad person for taking advantage of Forrest’s reduced mental faculties? We digress.
Justin followed it up with this tweet:
Perhaps it’s a meta-joke, in which case I applaud them for taking the piss, although you can bet some peeps are rocking up in the hopes of snapping a cool-kid selfie.
UPDATE: It is a meta-joke, and well-thought-out PR push for a new TV show:
Jack Wagner, one of the producers behind Like & Subscribe, told me that “the show itself is about influencers. The mural and all of the reactions are a very accurate and real-life preview of how ridiculous the show is”…
But as real influencers with six-digit follower counts hit me up for the mural address so they can get “ironic” snaps with it—and as I notice my own follower count climbing higher due my role as patient zero— I wonder how much good trenchant satire can do. Maybe this is just who we actually are.
These are the times in which we now live.
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