Kanye West, also known as “ye”, has recently come out of the “sunken place” (according to himself) and has been very public on social media with his opinions on politics, technology, other celebrities, and now social media’s display of followers and likes. Backed up by his wife, Kim Kardashian, Mr.West tweeted, “Social media can be good but we have to hold the heads responsible for the psychological damage it sometimes causes,” in a tweet which has since been deleted. Both the Wests have a total of 80 million followers together.
Ye then shared a video of Denzel Washington’s response to how he felt about social media in an interview. “Turn it off. That’s what I’d say. It’s hard for young people now because they’re hooked—they’re addicted,” the actor said in the clip. “We all want to be liked, but now we want to be liked by 16 million and will now—some of us will do anything to be liked.”
This video and series of tweets got a lot of mixed responses from fans and major heads of some of these social media companies like Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey who responded to Ye. “We’ve been thinking deeply about the follower and like counts, and what that incentivizes. We want to change. What made sense 12 years ago doesn’t make sense today,” Dorsey texted the star, according to a screenshot of the conversation West posted on Instagram. “As least for us. Us making that number bold and big incentivized people to want to increase it, and feel bad if they couldn’t. That’s not right. We want to incentivize contribution to the global conversation and consciousness.”
Ben Schwerin, VP of Partnerships at Snap inc., also responded to Mr. West with a text in support.
But there are many fans that are against this. Some are arguing that it easier for someone who is already famous for his work and talent to say such things because they already have that recognition and fanbase, but for others who are starting their careers, social media is a good outlet to show their craft and accelerate their success. There are many famous celebrities now that started their careers off of their social media metrics. Many models jump start their careers through Instagram and start their own successful businesses selling flat tummy tea. There are both pros and cons to Ye’s social media proposal, what do you think?