An Internet celebrity, blogebrity, cyberstar, online celebrity, or Internet personality is someone who has become famous by means of the Internet. The Internet allows people to reach a very large audience across the world and so become famous within one or more Internet communities.
Rising to fame
Millions of people write online journals or weblogs. In many cases these contributions do not make them notable on a large scale, or only for people with the same specialist interest. But if the author has or develops a distinctive personality, they may rise to fame derived from this as much as from the content of their blog.
In some cases, people might rise to fame through a single event or video that goes viral. The Internet allows videos, news articles, and jokes to spread very quickly. Depending on the reach of the spread, the content may become considered an "Internet meme," and thus, any of the people associated may gain exposure. For example, Zach Anner, an Austin, Texas-based comedian gained worldwide attention after submitting a video to Oprah Winfrey's "Search for the Next TV Star" competition. There is substantial searching online for people.
Internet celebrities have also become a popular phenomenon in China (PRC) with the likes of Sister Furong (Fu Rong Jiejie), who received worldwide notoriety and fame for her unashamed efforts at self-promotion via Internet postings.
The concept of web celebrity ties into Andy Warhol's quip about 15 minutes of fame. A more recent adaptation of Warhol's quip, possibly prompted by the rise of online social networking, blogging, and similar online phenomena, is the claim that "In the future, everyone will be famous to fifteen people" or, in some renditions, "On the Web, everyone will be famous to fifteen people". This quote, though attributed to David Weinberger, was said to have originated with the Scottish artist Momus.
Occasionally an Internet celebrity has naively invited fans to meet him/her at a certain place and time, without proper organization, attracting crowds of fans, causing disorderly and even unsafe situations. Alternatively it can be organized in a venue, with security personnel. Magcon is an example of even a group of internet celebrities meeting fans in the latter way.
- Kyle Craven, an American Internet celebrity known for his ubiquitous photo that became a popular image macro in 2012.
- Chris Crocker, an American Internet celebrity, occasional blogger, and occasional recording artist. Crocker gained international fame in September 2007 from his viral video "Leave Britney Alone", in which he tearfully defends pop singer Britney Spears's comeback performance at the MTV Video Music Awards; his video had over four million views in two days.
- Perez Hilton, a blogger, whose blog, Perezhilton.com, is known for its controversial posts covering gossip items about musicians, actors and celebrities.
- Eduard Khil, a Russian singer whose song, "I am Very Glad to be Returning Home", or Trololo, became an Internet meme in 2010.
- Jon Lajoie, a comedian, actor, rapper, singer and musician who became an Internet celebrity thanks to his many humorous music videos.
- Violet Benson, a comedian, most known for her female driven funny Instagram account and large social media following.
- Germano Mosconi, an Italian sport journalist who became famous after the leak, in 2004, of videos showing his off-air bursts of anger and blasphemies.
- Casey Neistat, an American filmmaker who currently has over 6 million subscribers, famous for his inspirational YouTube videos.
- Josh Ostrovsky, an American comedian known for his stunt viral videos and large social media following.
- Jake Boys, a British Youtuber known for his “Laddish style videos” and prank videos.
- Grumpy Cat, a female cat known for her grumpy expression.
- Colonel Meow, a male cat known as an "adorable fearsome dictator" and for his love of Scotch.
- Zubin Damania, a Stanford hospitalist who used an alter ego, "ZDoggMD," to produce YouTube parody rap videos that comment on the state of the healthcare system, different diseases, treatments, preventative measures, and stigmas around healthcare.
- Vahid Online, an Iranian netizen who rose to fame following his coverage of 2009 Iranian presidential election protests.
- Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg, the Swedish YouTuber, now known as "PewDiePie", started making "Let's Play" videos in 2010, and later became the most subscribed channel on YouTube in December 2013, garnering over 52 million subscribers as of January 2017.
- Jenna Marbles (Mourey), an American comedian and internet personality on YouTube. Began making videos in 2010 and has since become the 2nd most subscribed to female YouTuber on the internet.
- Crash & Burn aka Shawn Kavanaugh & John Farrell, known for their vlogs, movies and deadpan comedic timing in all of their videos.
- Rebecca Black, known for singing "Friday" in a 2011 music video that went viral, and is currently the 4th most disliked video on YouTube.
- DanTDM, known for his Minecraft videos. He has amassed over 13 million subscribers on YouTube.
- The Unipiper, known for his viral videos of himself dressed as Darth Vader while riding a unicycle and playing the bagpipes. His videos have received over 90 million views.
- Naomi Wu, Cantonese feminist and open source advocate.
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- Ron Rosenbaum (31 October 2005). "Frenzy of Judyism May Augur the Dawn Of New Neural Age". New York Observer
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- Kevin Smokler (1 October 2006). Citizen Media: The High School Years". Fast Company.
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- Christopher Williams (15 March 2007). "Lego, Superman and the US Army". The Register.
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- Beth Merchant (1 June 2007). "CS3 Up Close". Studio Monthly.
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- Celebrity in China. Hong Kong University Press. Retrieved 6 August 2015.
- Weinberger, David (July 23, 2005). "Famous to fifteen people". Archived from the original on December 14, 2006. Retrieved December 21, 2006.
- Momus (1991). "POP STARS? NEIN DANKE! In the future everyone shall be famous for fifteen people...". Grimsby Fishmarket. Archived from the original on September 27, 2008. Retrieved October 7, 2008.
- Contrere, Jessica (January 5, 2015). "Being Bad Luck Brian: When the meme that made you famous starts to fade away". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 6, 2015.
- Ramirez, Ramon (2007-09-13). "Britney Spears: Bombshell or just plain bomb?". The Daily Texan. Archived from the original on 2007-09-15. Retrieved 2007-09-13.
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- Aimee Swartz (October 10, 2015). "The Doctor-Rapper and CEO Who Intend to Fix Healthcare". The Atlantic.
- Diamond, Larry; Plattner, Marc F. (2012), Liberation Technology: Social Media and the Struggle for Democracy, Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, pp. 145–146, ISBN 1421406985
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- O’leary, Amy (2013-04-12). "The Woman With 1 Billion Clicks: Jenna Marbles". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2016-03-05.
- Alfonso III, Fernando (2016-06-30). "For This Chinese Reddit Bombshell, Tech Is Sexy". Forbes. Retrieved 2017-06-25.
- "Internet Fame Is Cruel Mistress for a Dancer of the Numa Numa" at The New York Times
- "The Flip Side of Internet Fame" at Newsweek
- "Rise of an Internet Star - Parlaying YouTube Fame Into Big Business" at ReadWriteWeb
- "Internet Famous: Julia Allison and the Secrets of Self-Promotion" at Wired
- "The new fame: Internet celebrity" at CNN
- "The Microfame Game" at New York