How Social Media Is Affecting China
When it comes to Instagram, you’d better not believe your eyes. What looks like the last word in luxury might just be a carefully airbrushed illusion, masterfully delivered through trickery, shared resources, and cold.
Social Media and Chinese Girl
Nobody in the world does this better than the husband- hunting social climbers of China’s rich girl WeChat groups. Why are so many girls taking the same photos, with the same poses, at the same locations? In China, as well as other parts of the world, cons are specifically targeted at celebrities. Celebrities sometimes carry on full relationships with people who aren’t what they seem. With how easy it is to connect with celebrities on different social media platforms, they’re more vulnerable than ever.
Husband Hunting Group
Luxe life for Chinese women who want to live the luxe life, snagging a rich husband or celebrity is the easiest way to upgrade their life. For many girls, playing elaborate tricks is simply the price of getting their Prince Charming. And he doesn’t understand the scope of the game until he puts a ring on it. For 500 yuan or less than $100 US dollars, aspiring socialites can join super-secret WeChat groups that act as training grounds for getting a husband with deep pockets. The groups go by names such as “Shanghai Female Socialite “and “Young/Fashion/Money”. The girls in these WeChat groups don’t mince any words about their end goal. It’s the dark side of the fake it ‘till you make it crowd. These Groups are essentially rich husband training camps. They help girls through the proper steps needed to score a celebrity or rich husband. Since celebrities' lives are fully public, people can easily target them with lonely hearts schemes or hard-luck stories.
Luxe Life of Chinese Girls
The Right Look The first step to look rich is to manufacture the right look for a rich girl. The plastic surgery fueled “influencer look” is a booming industry with Chinese Millennials and Chinese Gen Z. It’s a huge industry estimated to be around200 a Billion RMB industry for 2020. Forecasts see a 50% growth in the industry by 2023! And of course, the vast majority who go under the knife are women. The influencer look is simple. Large eyes, prominent nose, narrow jawline, and flawless, wrinkle-free skin. Across China, the luminous, smiling influencers look almost the same! The “internet Celebrity face” is the uniform the girls need to start their journey to Instagram superstardom. The girl's stage Instagram posts stuffed full of glamorous places and luxury products. These things are essential tools to appearing like they’re important people online. Heavy photo shopping is also done on the photos. In May of 2020, two Chinese influencers were caught doctoring photos to appear slimmer and more photogenic. Their throngs of fans felt betrayed and catfishes. Fake Rich a lot of these girls are a gang of wannabe influencers fixed on perfecting the socialite con. While it might seem harmless to fake a jet-set lifestyle, they’re anything but because for a lot of these girls, it’s to get rich husbands through smoke and mirrors. There are plenty of companies on Taboo, the WeChat e-commerce platform, that unabashedly help people to fake a lifestyle. They sell personalized voice-overs over videos of designer cars, mansions, epic tropical vacations, or big stacks of cash. Six yuan, or roughly one dollar, is all that someone needs to fake out anyone on their Instagram. The turnaround time is nearly instantaneous, and the industry is booming. Counterfeit geo-tagging. You can pretend to have it all, including whirlwind trips to Bali, Dubai, or other luxury places with fake geotags. Sometimes you got to show up. But how can these girls afford the expensive hotel rooms in exotic places along with all the designer handbags? The answer lies in strategic sharing. Strategic sharing is vital, especially if you're aren’t rich. Also, the girls do need to look rich on a date and match what any prospective husband has seen on her Instagram. One of the golden rules of the Young/Fashion/Money crowd is always to rent and never buy. The girls rent just about anything, from luxury cars to on-demand services. They do it just so they can take a few photos to post and also to have the right look to impress the rich target at the same time. The other golden rule is that sharing is caring.
The girls that look rich aren’t rich. It’s hard for them to justify spending a small fortune on designer purses and clothes. But becomes much more logical and attainable when they split the bill between many other girls. Chinese social climbers and aspiring Instagram stars oftentimes pool money to fake how much money they have. Take the example of a sophisticated brunch high Tea at a 5-star hotel. Instead of two people enjoying a high-priced meal, six girls chip in to offset the cost. The girls rotate through the pictures. Each girl will get her perfect picture with the spread, and the illusion becomes a reality, at least in the mind of the person looking at the picture. Do they all split the food when it comes time to eat too? Stuffing high-end hotel rooms to the gills with girls is another way these girls pull off their scam. For example, fifteen to twenty girls will pack Shanghai’s ritziest and most expensive hotel rooms. Each girl gets her ideal photo, and they're only out about 30 bucks each. It’s a small price to pay to prop up the myth that they’re wealthy in hopes that someday they really will be. More Rentals Luxury cars are another popular item to rent. They make great backdrops for photos and are reasonably cheap if you split the cost between SIXTY girls! It’s a better version of the old TaoBao trick, but this time, instead of just a voice-over, you get to pose with a real car. The same goes for designer handbags and stockings. Instead of buying expensive items, girls will rent and share them. There’s somewhat of a strange honor system involved. They’re fostered by a shared mission and a sense of loyalty. After all, these clubs are relatively secretive, and nobody will benefit from being outed as a fraud. Although this is great for the fake rich girls, it puts a massive strain on local businesses.
They have to deal with dozens of girls sharing things that were never really meant to be shared. Only Consign August of 2020, a controversy erupted in the tabloids. The press revealed that Chinese superstars Wilber Pan and Aaron Kwok were victims of a socialite con. Their wives were top graduates of a husband training camp run by a woman named Amy Jie. Photographs showed each woman sitting at an identical table, wearing the same clothes, and eating the same bowl of fruit. Although Jie’s photos were the only recent ones to surface, they’re not the only ones. As for duplicate images? She already knows that the photos got the job done for one girl. So why not have the same pose for another girl? Jie Academy the girls have to know how to pose and smile properly. So Jie had to give them the right instruction. Jie photos almost have their look. She’ll show the girls posing while ice-skating, lying in a posh bed, or looking into the camera with identical ceramic smiles. Each photo is almost exactly the right balance between being sexy and approachable. The goal is for the girls to drip with sophistication and that she’s not gold-digging at all. Unlike the Taobao videos. Featuring huge stacks of money, Jie’s looks DON’T scream wealth. This whisper is the siren call designed to lure in the rich men who think that they’re dating women of a similar social class. These images dupe many men into thinking that their Cinderella is a high-class socialite, only to discover that it was all a ruse after they put a ring on it.
Empty Box Phenomenon
Although some people find deception on Instagram too is funny or frivolous lives are completely changed here. In fairness, these groups aren’t just limited to China. The fake it ‘til you make it crowd is a global phenomenon. These savvy wannabe influencers will employ every trick in the book to boost their image and become the next million-dollar influencer. Influencers worldwide in the UK, influencers are turning to the allure of designer packaging to fake their wealth. It’s known as the “empty box” phenomenon. Influencers will carry around empty bags and boxes from luxury brands such Hermes and Prada to give the illusion that they shop there. This type of packaging is fantastic for photo-shoots too, where what’s in the box could be anyone’s guess. Old-school Photoshop tricks still do the job. Influencers will Photoshop themselves away in exotic locations and five- star adventures. In a world where perception is reality, these influencers can get hundreds of followers by appearing glamorous, even if they're not.
Falling Stars Challenge and Jets Phenomenon
These days, virtually anyone can operate Photoshop and create dreamy backdrops and fake vacation pics. Humblebrag TikTok has its version of humble-bragging known as the “Falling Stars Challenge” or Flaunt Your Wealth Challenge. In this challenge, social media stars get photographed taking a tumble, with the luxury contents of their bags spilling out all around them. Other versions of the “Falling Stars Challenge” include influencers tumbling off private jets or falling in posh restaurants. Although it’s a lot less subtle than the carefully cultivated Instagram photos designed to lure husbands, the “Falling Stars Challenge” is another branch of the same tree. The “Falling Stars Challenge” is popular with China’s perfectly groomed Instagram elite, as well as Russia’s rising Instagram stars, who also made waves for posing on fake jets. In the US, there are specific penthouses dedicated for Instagramers to rent out in LA. Then there are the companies that rent out private jets that just stay on the ground so pictures can be taken. Private jets are a goldmine for wannabe influencers who want to look rich. “Private” Jet these companies will rent out private jets by the hour for less than $100 US dollars. They’ll allow up to nine people to take private photographs. Is your favorite influencer taking private jets everywhere? Maybe, maybe not. Although renting a jet for an afternoon photo-shoot might seem harmless, it’s still rooted in deceit.
Dan Bilzerian Fakes his Lifestyle?
While the end goal might not be to snag a rich husband, the trickery and illusion are still there. Is this the main reason why Dan Bilzerian fakes his lifestyle? Global trends Instagram's trend of smoke and mirrors is a global phenomenon that doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon. They’ll still do whatever it takes to land a celebrity husband so they can completely change their life. There’s no doubt that newer, glossier sleight of-hand will be coming soon, in the ever-evolving make-believe place that’s called the internet.