One of the biggest curse of social media is the rise of these so-called celebrities – or who they think they are celebrities – just because of the number of followers they have amassed. Well, if you were loathed by the idea of these ‘celebrities’, the United Kingdom is set to compound your misery even further. According to a report by Gizmodo, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) of United Kingdom, anyone with over 30,000 followers on social media – Twitter and Instagram mainly – will officially be counted as an internet ‘celebrity’.
The trigger behind this decision, according to a report by The Telegraph, was a case involving Sanofi, a pharmaceutical giant and a British lifestyle blogger. Sanofi paid the blogger – who has 32,000 Instagram followers – to “endorse a sleeping sedative” on the photo-sharing app.In her ‘endorsement’ post, the blogger wrote that she was “a night owl” and that the drug was “great pharmacy only, short term solution to insomnia.”
After the Instagram ‘ad’ came out, the ASA said that celebrity endorsement of medication isn’t allowed under UK law. Sanofi argued that 32,000 followers didn’t make the blogger a celebrity and hence wasn’t breaking any rules. However, the ASA in their reply said that “30,000 followers indicated that she had the attention of a significant number of people” and that she was a celebrity under the advertising laws of the country.
However, the Telegraph report also mentions that the UK authority will continue to monitor social media advertising cases on individual basis. Still, it’s clear that over 30,000 followers will now officially qualify you as an internet celebrity in the United Kingdom. So, be prepared to see the rise and rise of more ‘influencers’ on social media platforms like Twitter and Instagram as we now have a number that as soon as you pass will make you a celebrity.