How far will you go for followers?
That was the question posed for iWant’s newest digital film offering You Have Arrived which stars Elisse Joson, Barbie Imperial, and Arielle Roces. The film centers around childhood best friends and social media influencers Arianne, Dani, and Flo whose lives revolve around getting likes, views, and followers.
Moreover, Arianne gets invited to a mysterious gathering of influencers called “Epik Party” and invites her two friends, convincing them that attending the event will bolster their social media statuses.
At the press conference for the film held at Restaurant 9501 in the ABS-CBN Building yesterday, October 23, the three stars of the film were asked about the importance of social media in their lives.
For Barbie, she believes that, nowadays, this is where people revolve in.
“Parang ganoon na ’yong naging sistema sa panahon ngayon,” Barbie told the press. “Kahit magaling ka naman pero kaunti ’yong followers mo, minsan hindi mo talaga makukuha kong ano ang gusto mo.”
The actress recalled that after exiting the reality show Pinoy Big Brother: 737, she had an increased 10,000 followers in her social media accounts.
“For me, importante din po talaga ’yong followers, ’yong likes kasi [...] doon ka talaga mapapansin ng mga tao, kung ano ’yong mga kakayahan mo, kung ano ’yong kaya mong gawin,” she said. “Pero dapat, para sa akin, kailangan ’pag may followers--kahit ilan pa ’yan--dapat ’yong ipapakita mo, ’yong mga i-po-post mo, ’yong i-she-share mo, dapat maayos kasi marami pong nakakakita [na] mga bata, matatanda, marami kang ma-impluwensiyahan,”
On the other hand, Elisse said that as a celebrity, social media plays an important role in her career yet reminds everyone that real life is still best lived off the smartphone.
“We can post and show everyone, show the public what we want you guys to see,” the former Pinoy Big Brother housemate Elisse said. “Pero, at the end of the day, ang totoong buhay pa rin is off of social media.”
She adds that social media is significant depending on how you use it but, in the end, she reminds everyone that people should remain aware that reality is off of social media.
Newcomer Arielle Roces, who is known for appearing in commercials and short films, says social media has both negatives and positives and echoes Elisse that people in show business really need to use social media to be a good influence to netizens.
“Meron din namang mga negativities,” she admits. “Minsan, if we’re using too much social media, we tend to leave off real-life experiences: to be with our family, to be with our friends. And, for me, I try to approach this type of philosophy. It’s called digital minimalism.”
A philosophy from Dr. Mark Hymann, digital minimalism, as explained by Arielle, is where you ask yourself what you value most in life and from that, you use technology to be intentional, to be selective. The philosophy promotes netizens to use social media for a purpose, not just for a past time.
When asked when can social media be healthy and unhealthy for them, Elisse relayed it what people say to her, knowing how celebrities receive comments on a day-to-day basis.
“Minsan, masyado namin napapakinggan kung ano ang sinasabi ng mga tao,” she said. “People have different opinions, they have different values. Na-experience ko po kasi na habang pinapakinggan ko ’yong bawat isa, though it’s nice to hear constructive criticism, pero, at the same time, kung papakinggan mo ’yong bawat isa diyan, mababaliw ka, eh. You have to follow each and everyone of them eh magkaiba po sila ng concept, gusto sa buhay, gusto para sa’yo.”
“For me, ’yon ’yong parang delikado once na masyadong nagbabasa ng comments, ng mga sinasabi,” she added. “It gets in my head and masyado na kong nag-iisip na ‘Ano ba dapat talagang ginagawa ko?’ so when that happens, it’s important to [...] go back to your roots, kung ano talaga ’yong ikaw mismo, ano ’yong nasa puso mo na kinalakihan mo [...] so you stay true to yourself.”
Meanwhile, Barbie reiterates that social media should be separated from personal lives.
“As long as kilala ko po ’yong sarili ko, kung ano ’yong ginawa, hindi na po kailangan mag-matter kung ano ’yong sinasabi ng mga tao,” she said. “At kung may sinasabi naman po sila, hindi ko po talaga bina-block ’yong mga bashers, ’yong mga taong nagda-doubt sa akin, kasi ’yon din po nagagamit ko eh [...]. Mas nakikilala ko sarili ko na hindi ako ganoong klaseng tao.”
Was there a time that they thought of having a social media detox? Barbie said she has not, and revealed that she two Instagram accounts, one public and one private.
“Hindi po,” she said. “’Yong mga pinopost ko sa public [social media] ko, ’yong about sa work po, ’pag may kailangan akong i-update sa supporters [...]. Kaya meron po akong private kasi fina-follow ko ’yong mga kaibigan ko talaga. [...] Never po talaga na umalis ako sa social media world.”
Arielle said there is no need for a social media detox and repeats the meaning of digital minimalism. She says in times today, social media is much needed for connections and work.
“Kung magde-detox tayo from that, it’s going to be very hard for us, ’di ba?” she said. “We just have to be very selective and intentional when it comes to technology use.”
Elisse, on the other hand, said she has done it before by deleting the application from her phone.
“Para lang marefresh ako, mawala din ’yong stress,” she explained. “Kasi kahit minsan, hindi ka magbasa, makakarating pa rin sa’yo somehow because of people tagging you or napag-usapan. So, ’pag ganoon, hindi mo rin maiiwasan na hindi pumasok sa utak mo. So, that’s when I know na it’s time for me to take a break off social media.”
“Sa akin naman, healthy ’yon for me,” she adds. “Iba-iba naman po kasi tayo. For me, it’s healthy kasi parang refresh button na huwag muna ako mag-social media. Pero, hindi niyo naman mararamdaman ’yon kasi hindi naman ako nagde-delete ng account or anything. It’s just for my personal peace of mind.”
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