|Game of Thrones star Sophie Turner made a satirical video wherein she went after for influencers who promote weight loss teas. / Photo credit by Dean Drobot via Shutterstock|
From makeup tutorials, vlogs discussing just about every relevant and irrelevant thing, and celebrity hot takes, YouTube is a constant resource of fresh content. The loudest voices get heard and the voices that keep on talking even outside of YouTube get heard the most. The rise of the “YouTube star” has led many businesses to believe that these “influencers” hold the collective pulse of the audience.
While they’re not wrong with that, it’s important to note that businesses will always be businesses. They operate in numbers and clicks and engagement if we are to look at the current dynamic of social media today. This is what led “Game of Thrones” star Sophie Turner to come out with a biting satire about something that has probably been bothering her for some time now, and people can’t help but agree.
Introducing the Weight Loss Tea
|Consuming weight loss products has its side effects such as fatigue, dehydration, slow metabolism among others. / Photo credit by Africa Studio via Shutterstock|
As they say on the internet, the “tea” or the truth of the moment is that social media has already become too big to fail. When in the past, all we had going on on YouTube were a couple of inane videos of people discovering they could broadcast whatever they wanted for free, now we have monetization, ads, and influencer drama that seems to have no end in sight.
But it’s not only these things that influencers have to deal with. More importantly, there are real-life consequences and things in their lives that they need to understand they will need to be accountable for now that they have a bigger audience.
For many influencers, this is both daunting and crucial. The core of being a successful influencer is, after all, getting those clicks, something that Turner finds is somewhat bothersome, especially as some of these wonderful men and women on social media don’t seem to find it wrong to be selling fad weight-loss teas.
In a viral satirical video, Turner, who played Sansa Stark in the HBO hit series “Game of Thrones,” went after influencers who peddled these weight loss teas with utter disregard for the very well-known, very obvious side effects.
According to Comic Book, a website focused on all things pop culture, the “Game of Thrones” star opened her video by hilariously saying she was in her “influencer look” for the day. After that, it was a one-way trip to Satire Town where people are few and you can never really tell if they were joking. She said in an American accent: “Today I just wanted to promote this new powdered stuff that you put in your tea. And basically it makes you shit your brains out and is totally really, really bad for me to be promoting to women and young people everywhere, but I don’t really give a f*ck because I’m getting paid money for it.” She then signed off by saying, “Influencer life.”
One thing is clear: Turner is not here to pull her punches at all. And the thing is, a lot of what Turner said is actually backed by legitimate data. According to Refinery 29, a leading media and entertainment company focused on women with a global audience footprint of 249 million on all platforms, even nutritionists have warned against these weight loss products because not only are they not regulated at all (this should be a giant red flag already), they have also been found to lower blood sugar, incite malnutrition, fatigue, and dehydration, cause irritability and slow metabolism and even trigger eating disorders.
For many people exposed to dozens of influencers who do much the same thing on their platforms, the case Turner makes against these products is not new or surprising. And for the West whose beauty standards equate health to a thin body for as long as anyone can remember, the message is grossly distorted and bordering on insensitive.
This was why Jameela Jamil, star of the comedy series “The Good Place” felt the same urge last year to call out these product ads in an Instagram video. Perhaps it is where Jamil is coming from that has inspired her to take a stand against these products, and frankly, it was about time.
“As someone who struggled with an eating disorder for most of my youth, I’ve personally known and suffered the perils of the devious side of the diet/detox industry,” Jamil said.
She also famously called out the Kardashians, admittedly some of the most recognizable faces endorsing these products, but she clarified that she didn’t have any kind of bad blood with them personally. Jamil said that what she took issue on was just that these celebrities don’t feel as bad for telling absolute lies on social media in exchange for fame and money.
Blessedly, Yahoo Lifestyle, a source for style, beauty, and wellness, reports that Instagram has taken measures against this kind of lofty advertising, taking the time to remove those who make “miraculous claims” with regard to certain products.