Thursday, August 16, 2012

Rich Kids of Instagram

First came Paris Hilton. Then the documentary about heirs of the One Percent, "Born Rich," and MTV's series "My Super Swee 16"" Now comes the dot-com version of silver-spoon voyeurism: "The Rich Kids of Instagram."
The blog on Tumblr features photos set in gilded frames of rich kids and wanna-bes in various states of excess, undress and indulgence, and ever since its launch last month, "The Rich Kids of Instagram" has touched off a firestorm of debate over rich kids and social media.

One shot shows three teens swimming at a lake - and pouring Dom Perignon into one other's mouths. Another shows a guy sticking a giant foam finger out of his Ferrari, while in another kids slide down a giant inflatable slide attached to the side of their mega-yacht.
The site also marks the debut of a whole new genre: "receipt porn." Some posts consist of a photograph of a 100,000-euro meal receipt from St. Tropez or a $42,000 bar bill.

Dom Perignon also features prominently throughout: being poured on heads, being poured into a spaghetti sauce and being paired with a hot dog (and girl with bikini) "at poolside." The site might as well be called "Dom Gone Wild" (since bikinis also feature prominently).
The captions would be the stuff revolutions are built on - if the whole site were not so proudly and ridiculously superficial. There is a shot of a guy getting off a yacht with the caption "How else do u expect to get around in the Hamptons."
A shot of five dudes in a private jet bears the caption "Flying private with friends." Shoes, watches and jewelry make up the bulk of the shots, and there is one shot captioned, "All my Amex," exhibiting a gold card, black card and platinum card. Another depicts a guy wearing a necklace made of money.

That's not to mention the photos that have been taken off the site for being, well, too much. According to Bloomberg Michael Dell's daughter Alexa posted a photo of her brother, Zachary, enjoying a feast on their private-jet flight to Fiji. Alexa has also been tweeting information about her schedule and shopping plans, creating a potential security risk. The photo and some of her over-sharing was taken down.

What to make of all this? The site has generated more than its share of scolding and class warfare on the web. Rebecca Greenfield that "Preteens posing with helicopters they did nothing to earn and posting the pictures online for others to ogle provides an easy in for commentary on the state of the American dream. (Dead.)"
But let's be real: many of the kids on "Rich Kids of Instagram" are not really rich. And most of the stuff they're doing is not all that unusual - like wearing a suit and sunglasses. Most of the photos are just young people partying by pools or nightclubs.

The site's founder, contacted by email, wants to remain anonymous. "We find anonymity is a hard thing to replace," they wrote. Regarding the site's popularity and mission, the founder said it's "more popular than most ideas that take shape over a few glasses of wine. It's going well."
He/she added that the site has taken down "a few" photos.
Like the "Housewives" and other stars of rich-reality shows, the "Rich Kids of Instagram" is as much of a frivolous pose as it is a real window into the lives of rich kids. Those real lives, no doubt, would not always be as interesting or photogenic.

Dell CEO's Kid Overshares on Social Media

The twitter account for Alexa Dell, daughter of Dell founder Michael Dell, has been deactivated following security concerns prompted by her detailed account of the family's whereabouts.
The security of the CEO, who expects to spend $2.7 million in 2012 t0 keep his family safe, came under question after an photo of Zachary Dell was posted by his sister Alexa on photo-sharing app Instragram, according to Bloomberg Businessweek
The teenager shared a photo of Zachary devouring cuisine in a private plane on a trip to Fiji. But, that's not all, the magazine reported. Like millions of others who use social network sites, she would often-times detail the time, date and location of many events attended by the family, including trips to New York City and a high school graduation dinner, according to Bloomberg Businessweek.
The photo has since been removed.
After Alexa posted the photo to Instragram, it would eventually pop up on the website Rich Kids of Instragram, a tumblr account dedicated to showing the way people reveal their wealth on social media.
Since many users have their Facebook account or Twitter accounts connected to the application-recently acquired by Facebook for $1 billion-it's often easy to track additional social media information from users. A Twitter account and Google+ account purported to be used by Alexa has since been taken down.
Michael Dell is a self-made billionaire. At 19 years old, Dell launched from his dorm room at the University of Texas the hardware company that would reach a $20 billion market cap. The father of four has a net worth of $15.9 billion, according to Forbes.
"We don't comment on Mr. Dell's or his family's personal activities," a spokesperson for Dell told ABC News.

No comments: