Influencers followed by thousands of subscribers, do not hesitate to publish pictures of themselves together against their friends in a pool or on a terrace, while the case of COVID-19 climb among young people.
“Bonne Saint-Jean to all “, published Marina Bastarache on June 24, alongside a picture where we see her drinking in the company of PO Beaudoin. Together, the two influencers were 261 000 subscribers on Instagram.
Pierre-Olivier Beaudoin and Marina Bastarache on a terrace in Montreal on the day of the fête nationale du Québec.
Any door to believe that three of the four people in this photo are not living under the same roof, which is contrary to the rule of two meters between people of different households. None are wearing the mask, which is then strongly recommended when the distance is not possible.
The Newspaper was able to identify several influencers in quebec with more than 10,000 subscribers in flagrante delicto of crowd in the past weeks, Rym Nebbak and Elody Small.
Rym Nebbak, Sarah Claude-Vollelv and Jennifer Nogue, of the reality show Occupation double, are displayed without respecting the distance.
For several days, the authorities are increasing the output to cope with the release of the health rules, in particular in response to the presence of young people infected in a crowded bar, of Brossard, where the distance was non-existent at the end of the week.
Dated as of may 6, the young people under 30 years of age accounted for less than one infected person on 7 in Quebec.
Two months later, on 6 July, this proportion had jumped to 1 in 5, according to the ministry of Health.
Influencers may have contributed to this release ? Hard to say.
“But it is sure that it can have an impact,” says Alexandre Coutant, professor of communication sociale et publique, UQAM.
This influence is rarely direct. This is not to see a personality in the process of making hugs and kisses to four friends that will encourage people to do the same, but the repetition of these images that create a “social norm,” explains Mr. Coutant.
A lot of relaxation
At the height of the containment, François Legault launched a special appeal to celebrities and artists to raise the awareness of young people.
This is what most of the influencers have done, assures Nicholas Good of the agency, Clark’s Influence.
“Even as the influence has regained a little of its meaning […], not used more just to sell products. “
And then the déconfinement happened. Antonin Pasquereau, marketing agency BlackCatSEO, then began to see videos in which people were more distancing.
In a photo published at the end of June, the hairdresser Kevins Kyle is on a boat, surrounded by seven women in a swimsuit. Between them, a zero-foot distance.
Difficult for the hair stylist and influencer Kevins Kyle and seven of his colleagues to keep 2 m distance on a small boat.
“I was with work colleagues. It is side by side all on a very regular basis. We closed our social circle and I can only see my friends at the moment “, justifies the one who has some 42 000 subscribers.
For M. Pasquereau, the fact that personalities are displayed, and illustrates that this behavior is accepted in the population. “And the brands that sponsor it, I think they don’t care about that,” he said
He raises questions on the effectiveness of the messages of public health authorities at a time when social networks are ” the field of action the most important “.
“On the social media, everyone has a responsibility, but everyone does not necessarily account for,” says Aurélie Sauthier of the house Made in.
Influencers don’t really have a training or code of ethics, abounds Mr. Coutant. “I don taperais so not too much on the head.”
“But I could do an article a day on all the problems caused by their actions”, he admits.
For example, “there are influencers who are followed by young people and put forward what they picolent”, so that the promotion of alcoholic beverages and the messages directed to children are highly regulated in the traditional advertising.
Marina Bastarache, Pierre-Olivier Beaudoin, Rym Nebbak and Elody Petit declined or did not return interview requests from the Journal.