Over the past year, DJ Khaled has gone through an inexplicable evolution. Once a prominent DJ/producer, Khaled has consistently capitalized on the digitization of entertainment to the point of absurdity, adding the roles of Snapchat innovator and self-help coach to his resume.
Through vague motivational catchphrases and a near 24/7 presence on social media, Khaled has taken his brand to unforeseen heights and revolutionized the way in which entertainers take advantage of digital and social media.
Khaled’s Snapchat legacy reached its peak yesterday (October 23), with the birth of his son, which Khaled shared on the social media service in damn near its entirety—all while blasting his own music, of course.
Regardless of how Khaled’s fans, or his wife for that matter, may have reacted to what some may see as the ultimate TMI moment, the decision does mark a clear shift in the entertainer/audience relationship, and could very well be the point of no return for the digital era.
With Khaled’s latest move, we’ve officially reached a point that we’ve been teetering on for the last few years of increasing social media ubiquity, where absolutely nothing is private.
The question of whether or not that’s a good thing is better left to philosophers and psychologists, but the fact of the matter is it’s here, so what now?
Artists and entertainers have been trying to navigate the unregulated waters of social media interaction with varied success for years, but it seems that no matter how much the people we deem celebrities share with us, it’s never quite enough.
As a culture that’s chosen a select few to be placed on a pedestal, we’re currently dealing with the prospect of unprecedented access to the lives of these individuals, and our hunger for a glimpse behind the curtain of those we deem as worthy of our attention has yet to be satiated, even with moments like Khaled Snapchatting his son’s birth.
Given the exponential development of social media culture as well as technologies like live streaming and virtual reality, it’s not outside the realm of possibility to think that we’re not far off from getting literal 24/7 access to our favorite celebrities. We’ve yet to see how far this can and will go.
In a few years, fans might have the opportunity to pay $9.99 a month to experience life through the eyes of a celebrity. The technology is there, and as we’ve seen with DJ Khaled’s interpretation of social interaction, the demand is definitely there.
As technology and social interaction continue to entwine, we’re going to experience connectivity on a level we’ve never known before, both with our peers and with those we’ve anointed as something greater than ourselves. In regular terms, shit’s going to get weird.
In 15 years when we’re all living in some weird offshoot of Being John Malkovich, we’ll look back fondly at the days when DJ Khaled was simply sharing the birth of his son through 10-second videos.