June 10, 2023

Coronavirus & Parties: Please Spare a Thought for Struggling Instagram Influencers

It’s easy to go nuts reading the New York Times and marveling at the contradictions in its coverage, and it’s probably not worth dwelling on at length. But Joe Simonson is right: Taylor Lorenz’s profile of Instagram “influencers” who are continuing to throw parties during the pandemic because, in their words, they “can’t put our entire lives on hold for a year and not make any money” is written with a jarring sympathy that would never be extended to, say, small businesses, church groups, or New York’s Orthodox Jewish communities.

Some of these quotes are just galling:

“It’s a level of accountability they have to have on themselves,” said Michael Gruen, a founder of TalentX, a management firm that represents many TikTokers. “It’s tough to tell 18-year-olds who live in L.A. away from their parents not to go out for two years.”

Really? Really? Because it is not that difficult to find human beings who are enduring a much tougher burden than not being able to go to parties. Ask anyone working in a hospital! Ask anyone who’s lost a loved one or suffered serious health problems from the virus! Ask any working parent! Ask any senior citizen being told to stay away from everyone!

And the era of “not going out” has been in effect for about five months, not two years!

Last month the Times noted, “when Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia relaxed restrictions on businesses in late April as testing lagged and infections rose, the talk in public health circles was of that state’s embrace of human sacrifice.”

Suddenly, the Paper of Record is noting without any discernable judgment, “influencers say the parties are a necessary outlet in a time of extreme social isolation.”

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