Instagram star Essena O'Neill quits social media

A screen capture from letsbegamechangers.com.
A screen capture from letsbegamechangers.com.

Social media celebrity Essena O'Neill has amassed hundreds of thousands of followers on Instagram, YouTube, Tumblr and Snapchat. But now the 18-year-old Aussie says she was living a fake life and is done with social.

"Deleted over 2000 photos here today that served no real purpose other than self promotion. Without realising, I've spent majority of my teenage life being addicted to social media, social approval, social status and my physical appearance," she wrote in a message on Instagram. "Social media, especially how I used it, isn't real. It's contrived images and edited clips ranked against each other. It's a system based on social approval, likes, validation in views, success in followers."

She says that she edited dozens of captions on photos on Instagram to more properly reflect what was actually going on. In one pic of her wearing a long white dress, she admits that she didn't pay for it. In another photo, she says he was paid $400 to wear a specific dress.

Essena says she is launching a new website called letsbegamechangers.com. She says that she was so caught up in generating "likes" and "shares" and that the new website will not be about that.

"P.S when the new form of social sharing comes out, something that doesn't revolve around likes and views but based on similar topics/quality for example, I will see you there, whenever that day comes.... We must create change," she says.

 

 

I'm quitting Instagram, YouTube and Tumblr. Deleted over 2000 photos here today that served no real purpose other than self promotion. Without realising, I've spent majority of my teenage life being addicted to social media, social approval, social status and my physical appearance. Social media, especially how I used it, isn't real. It's contrived images and edited clips ranked against each other. It's a system based on social approval, likes, validation in views, success in followers. It's perfectly orchestrated self absorbed judgement. I was consumed by it. I spent majority of my day aimlessly scrolling, hours on YouTube... How can we see ourselves and our true purpose/talents if we are constantly viewing others? Many of us are in so deep we don't realise it's delusional powers and the impact it has on our lives. There's a select few photos I left here, half are original captions that I believe to be educational, the other half are photos that deluded you. It was never my conscious intention, but I deluded a lot of people...Call it deception, manipulation, lying, not saying the whole truth... I was both addicted to social approval and terrified no one would value me for myself. So I rewrote the captions of these false photos with short shots of reality. EVERYTHING EXPLAINED IN THE LINK IN MY BIO. There's no likes or views or followers there. Just my content as raw as I want. It's all going to be free of course. My main vegan videos will still be on YouTube, but vimeo will host all the new quality content. Made to help not to get views or $$$. How will I spread my message? Organically. If it moves someone, they tell their friends about it, simple as that. I'll be talking about vegansim, creative imagery with purpose, poems, writing, interviews with people that inspire me, and of course the finical reality behind deluding people off Instagram...I was so caught up in it all. P.S when the new form of social sharing comes out, something that doesn't revolve around likes and views but based on similar topics/quality for example, I will see you there, whenever that day comes.... We must create change.

A photo posted by Social Media Is Not Real Life (@essenaoneill) on

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