My best friend Porscha posted a status on Facebook some time back talking about a new show on Netflix called “Black Mirror”. She shared how it was a must see, especially season three. After hearing of how good it was and seeing others commenting their take, I decided to give it a shot. I started watching the first episode of season three entitled, “NoseDive”. After watching it for a couple of minutes, it reminded me of the “Stepford Wives” in a way…..robotic humans yearning to live a life of perfection day to day.
The episode shows how we as people live for the Facebook likes, Twitter retweets, and Instagram followers to the point that we would pay for them. We want to be liked so bad by people who most likely could care less about us as a person, but what we can give, show, and offer. In the show every individual was graded and the higher your number was, the more opportunities you were offered. Depending on what you showed on Instagram, whilst how many likes or “points” you received. If you wanted to live in a certain area, you had to have a certain amount of “likes” on social media in order to reside there. The entire world’s interaction was based on a points system.
There was one scene where a young African American man had gotten fired from his job because he had dropped below a 3.9. I watched, my heart dropped and tears came to my eyes because this was real! Real life! This is exactly what the world is becoming when it comes to social media. The main character wanted to be liked so much that she was willing to do anything to become a coveted 4.5. She even had an old high school associate reach out to her because she had reached her goal of becoming a 4.5. She was getting married and asked her to be her maid of honor. These women weren’t friends. As a matter of fact, the girl bullied her all through high school, stole her boyfriend, and more. But because she was of a certain caliber now she wanted her to be in her circle. Because after all being a 4.5 or higher was “goals”, as we say.
Throughout the episode you saw this young women’s journey of trying to be perfect, trying to be excepted by society. Her willingness to do anything to become a part of the “elite” was downright sickening. It was sad. This episode revealed so much to me. I saw a little bit of myself. I saw how in the past I had been obsessed with the “like”, obsessed with getting the next follower. At one point I was monitoring my followers closely through apps like Crowdfire. If someone unfollowed, I wanted to know why. I wanted to figure out what I needed to change about my page to get them back. Watching this showed me how individuals in our society are driven by the “like”. It really hurt my heart that we feel like it makes us who we are. It’s sad that we feel as though if we don’t have a “K” on Instagram that we aren’t valid. It made me take a step back and ask myself some serious questions.
I knew that I had to share this. I had to let people know that social media does not validate you. Social media does not make you as a person. Social media is just that, social media. You are who you are with 1,000 followers, 100,000 followers, or 100 followers. The person with 100,000 followers isn’t better than the one with 100. It’s imperative to be true to you. It’s imperative to love yourself where you are. It’s important to not be driven by the “like”, by the “followers”, by the life that people are conditioned to show you on “social media”. Know that what people show, nine times out of ten is not what is really going on behind the camera. When they go home and the lights go down, you have no idea what they are facing.
Begin to love you for you. People will see the authenticity you bring. Don’t change yourself for the “like”. Know that you’re amazing just as you are and that the right people will appreciate that. And if they don’t, that’s ok too. Everyone isn’t meant too. Invest your time in those who invest in you. If you never reach a “K”, if you never reach 1,000 followers, you are still VALID!