E-Fame and E-Fortune: E-Fun, But Also E-Weird

[Trendzilla] Some of us are glad our teenage fashion choices aren't cached somewhere forever

Mishka the Husky, who can kind of growl-bark, “I love you,” has more than 23 million YouTube views. And now she has her debut single for sale on iTunes for 99 cents.

The future is weird.

Facebook lets me know who broke up, who’s hooking up, who just went to Bali—and it now also has its own Oscar-worthy, No. 1 film at the box office.

The Internet is freaking me out, man.

A few months ago, I told you about online “lookbooks,” for which kids and adults of all ages show off their daily outfits. Users of sites such as Lookbook.nu and Chictopia.com post numerous images—from all angles! Bonus points for lit cigarettes and if your pet cat Bob Dylan is in the photo!—and get fashion advice, share shopping tips . . . but mostly it’s just to garner e-popularity and (hopefully?) compliments.

Give it a few more weeks, and you might soon find yourself a self-made model being flown all over the world to star in numerous online ad campaigns. Clothing companies often send the more-popular participants of online lookbook sites free swag, just like they do with “real” celebrities, in hopes the e-celebrities will be photographed with the items.

Fashion and fame are as easy as ever. And that’s pretty awesome.

Look up what Edie wore in ’65, how the original Rude Boys dressed for a night out, what the latest It Girl of the moment is wearing. Discover the hippest new designers, purchase their goods and Google all the discount codes you need to get free shipping. Style has never been more accessible.

But, you know, this has to be said: All this stuff is just making it too easy for kids to go too much too fast with fashion as well. A quick glance through those online lookbooks, and you’ll find a few underage kids in tiny leather hot pants who’ve mastered the brooding-heroin-addict look way too soon.

Jealous I didn’t look that stylish at that age? That’s pretty obvious.

MTV is airing almost weekly reminders of the daaaaangers of the Internet, along with sexting and terrifying accounts of cyber-bullying and the sort, so you already know the crap you’re posting online is there forever, thanks to caches and assholes who live to embarrass others. And while I do wish all this knowledge of the cool and hip had been so available to me at a young age, me and my Tommy Hilfiger denim overalls are also grateful that my most awkward years weren’t documented online.

Though, really, it’s pretty cool we live in an age when even kittens can get e-fame. Maru, if you’re reading this, I really, really love you.

vchang@ocweekly.com

This column appeared in print as "Fifteen Pixels of Fame."

 
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