What is Social Media? Well let’s be real here, it’s about being social, right? And with that said, we are living in a digital age where social media has revolutionized the way we, as a society, communicate. Now that’s a long and broad story to cover but today we’re going to touch on one of the many victims of this phenomenon: celebrities
It used to be just the tabloids reporting on the petty, utterly meaningless, details of the lives of the rich and famous. Now, you can easily open up your browser and what tops the headlines? “Chris Brown Twitter Battle” or “Blake Lively Tweets Nude Pics”. Two more clicks and you’re engulfed in an alternate reality where the most absurd things are said, done, and documented by our beloved pop idols.
Then, one day, you come across an article reading “Jason Alexander apologizes for ‘gay cricket’ remarks” and all of a sudden you’re brought to a long letter of amends addressed to none other than…yes, his Twitter followers.
In the article, the former “Seinfeld” star leaves no detail untouched about what transgressed both on the Craig Ferguson show as well as through his mind as he leads the reader through his epiphany about gay rights and discrimination. Despite being a bit TL;DR, the letter is truly an amazing piece of writing that leaves both your eye brows up and even slightly compelled to open up TweetDeck and say, “it’s okay @IJasonAlexander, you’re alright.”
Then it hits you. This wasn’t Jason’s publicist speaking on behalf of the comedian. It wasn’t Jason returning to the talk show to say sorry to millions of families on national TV, no. Not for the children, or the Seinfeld fans. This was to the Twitter users who relentlessly flamed him for his classless remarks. This was addressed to his followers, the fans of his who have voluntarily bought in to hearing about his daily activities, thoughts, feelings, and opinions.
So what does this say about social media and, well, society? Does it just provide another way for public figures to destroy their reputations? Or is it facilitating a two way line of communication, where everyone is held accountable for what they say and do, especially if they are a person of influence?
No more need to write letters that will never be opened or phone down press contacts to be heard - the revolution lives in 140 characters.
Here’s a link to the full story and apology letter: http://www.ology.com/post/80311/jason-alexander-issues-sincere-apology-after-bad-gay-joke-on-craig-ferguson
Michael Huang is a Social Media Coordinator at Razorfish and a Seattle native. You can connect with him on twitter at @MightyMikeskee where he tweets about break dancing, Hip-Hop music, and Linsanity.