In 2016, James Charles was a high-school student in upstate New York. He was an aspiring makeup artist who’d do his friend’s faces for practice and small amounts of money, and
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For those who aspire to create a tea account, the barrier to entry is incredibly low. In fact, it’s mostly teenagers who run them. “They’re aggregating Insta stories, Snapchats, likes on tweets, monitoring who unfollows who,” said Josh Cohen, the founder and CEO of TubeFilter, a website covering YouTube.
Influencers like Westbrook and Charles don’t just follow tea accounts. They interact with them on a regular basis by feeding them stories, granting interviews, and attempting to shape their own narratives. Westbrook says she spoke to two tea accounts, Tea Spill and Here For The Tea, after becoming angry with Charles, only to discover that Charles himself had spoken to them first.
When feuds break out between Bravo stars or traditional Hollywood actors, it’s hard to tell who is up and who is down. But social media provide real-time metrics on who is winning a fight. Since last Friday, tea channels have been live-streaming Westbrook and Charles’s subscriber counts, and hundreds of thousands of fans have tuned in to watch the scoreboard. “Tea channels are the perpetrators of these YouTuber news cycles,” said Hill. “They’re constantly churning out news about influencers who are just having a tiff, feuding, or being shady to each other.”
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In the influencer ecosystem, remaining relevant is critical to continued growth. One quick and easy way to insert yourself into the cultural conversation is by manufacturing drama. YouTubers who are highly effective at this, like Jake and Logan Paul, can dominate the tea account news cycle for weeks by dropping diss tracks, staging …read more
Source:: The Atlantic – Technology