In this post i’d like to cover my more broader motivations for making The Fakefluencer film and why i chose to use the topics of Influencers, the spread of misinformation online and the cryptocurrency economy to tell the story of The Fakefluencer.
Although a Mockumentary film at its heart is an important message about retaining our real human connection with one another, even if we must express those connections through digital filters outside of our control.
Having graduated in studio and fine arts, traveling for many years, building and dismantling a software startup and working in video marketing for the last seven years, i thus far have developed what i feel is a unique perspective on our world, that perspective being highly sceptical yet applied optimistically.
From 2016 to 2018 i co-developed a product called Qwids which married blockchain technology with branded reward points, the aim was simple; provide a simple way for any brand to launch a mission orientated cryptocurrency rewards-based loyalty points program.
During those years it became clear that influencers, specifically micro-influencers would be able to use this program to collaborate and co-create directly with brands; while not having to be tied into the loyalty part of the collaboration – due to the exchangeable nature of cryptocurrencies.
Though influencers were not my idea of an initial target for Qwids, through this extensive period of observation and iteration i noticed reoccurring themes among influencers and brands and how they cooperated within the influencer economy.
I noticed that almost none of the value claiming to be created by influencers collaborating with brands was sufficiently accurately measurable, and so the data was easily manipulated. It made me seriously reconsider the application of Qwids and what it was i actually wanted to build.
I started to think more broadly about influencers and how anyone can peddle influence with enough resource backing from a co-sponsor that largely gets to remain anonymous. These somewhat mysterious backers of influence appear to have nothing to lose, if an influencer lost their influence these backers could just find a new influencer, or create one from scratch.
Paid self-proclaimed Influencers that peddle in misinformation, especially to the younger demographic, i feel is the biggest threat facing the coming generations. As those coming generations will have grown up primarily within that world, learning about the world and each other through a digital filter that does not lend itself well to a non-transactionally based shared truth.
My concerns go beyond fake commercial products being promoted without the appropriate hashtag, my concerns are based around the battle for shared ideas. The great Disrupter in Chief largely thanks to his backers has shown us all how to win this battle of ideas, and in doing so has played a significant role in bringing attention to those modes of communications we all have come to passively adopt.
Reporting on and more recently working in the cryptocurrency industry for the last seven years has afforded me great observational insight into a new exciting and yet very weird economic model. In crypto land there’s a great perception that anything is possible and that these new economic tools signify a new wave of self-empowerment that the old economic models can no longer provide.
Blockchain, as with the internet is a great disrupter however as with the internet it’s going to take a few decades until that disruption is properly understood, and as with social media becoming prevalent some twenty years after the internet went mainstream; giving birth to the Influencer. So we will see similar disruptions over the coming years thanks to the (yet to be adopted) next wave of decentralized applications.
People say “write about what you know,” the thing is, when it comes to the ever-evolving features of humanity within a digital context there is an awful lot that cannot be known, I do know crypto though, and i know what i don’t like.
The Fakefluencer film is my attempt to bring a new unique perspective to these three poignant aspects of modern human life, and in doing so my hope is that the coming generations of always-on always-live humans will be encouraged to update their critical faculties and retain the best of their humanity.