At last night’s Social Media Week panel at Viacom headquarters, reality stars and super fans gathered to discuss the crumbling divide between celebrities and the public.
A panel of teenage super fans took the stage to talk about their obsession with One Direction, the Kardashians, and MTV’s “Awkward,” and share their encounters with the stars online.
The biggest takeaway was that fans can tell the difference between stars who manage their own accounts and those who hire someone else to do it for them. One Direction’s Liam Payne, for example, “can’t spell at all,” a panelist said, so fans are always suspicious of perfectly articulated tweets. If there’s a smiley face out of place, they’ll know.
Nicole, another panelist who writes under the handle @trukardashfan, said that Khloe Kardashian sets aside time at least once a week to respond to hundreds of messages from fans. Kardashian even told Nicole “I hope you feel better” when she was sick with the flu and called her a “lovebug.”
“Even though we’ve never met,” Nicole said, “honestly, it’s like I know her.”
The stars don’t seem to mind the attention. When it comes to dealing with the public, “social media is the most important thing,” said Drita D’Avanzo from VH1’s “Mob Wives” in the next panel. She reads everything her fans send her and enjoys live-tweeting during her show.
Joining D’Avanzo were Nev Schulman from MTV’s “Catfish: The TV Show,” Cody Alan from CMT’s “Hot 20 Countdown” and “CMT Radio Live with Cody Alan,” Ivy Winters from Logo’s “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” and moderator Natan Edelsberg, who writes for our sibling blog, “Lost Remote.”
Winters wasn’t much of a social media user before she joined the fifth season of “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” but after a little coaching, she now finds the one-on-one interaction with fans “inspiring.” Said Winters, “Go social media!”