Skip to main content

Instamoms are a social media phenomenon of child fame, vanity, and money

instamom child models let the music play by alexproject
Scaparro / DeviantArt (used under Creative Commons)
Familiarize yourself with Instamoms, the latest phenomenon in social media. Like its modern counterpart, reality television, the social age has produced some rather interesting celebrities that in any other time would probably never have been stars. And children are again the ones being unwillingly thrust into the limelight — often through the work of their parents and, in some cases, “professional” coaches who specialize in making a child an Internet star. That is the story behind a recent New York Times article which discusses the journey of photographers, the children that are the subject of this Internet fame, their parents, and the social media that creates this sensation.

Like many things shared socially on the Web, the emergence of this this media creation has been rapid. It is also highly competitive. The children, whose life stories are being told for all the public to see, boast some pretty impressive social media statistics. For example, there’s four-year-old London Scout, who has 105,000 followers, two-year-old Millie-Belle Diamond with 143,000, as well as four-year-old Michelle (154,000), Gavin (200,000), and the Mini Style Hacker (260,000). Then there’s the “Prince of Instagram,” Alonso Mateo, who recently attended the Dior show at Paris Fashion Week. Alonso has more than 600,000 followers.

Instagram is the social media channel of choice, and research shows it is the fastest growing major social network among adults in the United States. And parents are seeing this this highly visual social tool as a marketing opportunity to show off the lives of their children, and make money in doing so. There are endorsement deals, photographers whose work focuses on Instagram accounts, discounts at a variety of shopping locations, and sponsorships involved in this amazingly complex industry — not unlike the reality TV shows about child beauty pageants.

Indeed it resembles modeling, but isn’t constrained by the rules of traditional modeling. Major brands and high profile companies like Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop brand have negotiated deals with parents on behalf of their children.

The hope for many parents is that their children will become famous. Part-hobby, part-industry, part-vanity, it is unclear what the effects will be on the children once they advance out of this industry. The tale of where the age of “Instamom” goes may be the future, or a blip in history.

Editors' Recommendations

John Casaretto
Former Digital Trends Contributor
John is the founder of the security company BlackCert, a provider of SSL digital certificates and encryption products. A…
When is the best time to post on Instagram?
Someone holding an iPhone. The screen shows a full-screen Instagram post.

Creating viral content is only half the battle when it comes to increasing engagement on your Instagram posts -- timing is important too. Figuring out the best possible time to publish your IG posts in order to maximize the exposure they get is vital to the success of your posts. After all, it doesn't matter how amazing your photos and videos are if your audience isn't even around to see them and interact with them.

There are two ways to tackle the problem of timing: You can either rely on the research of social media experts who can give you one-size-fits-most estimates of the best possible days and times to post on Instagram (not ideal in terms of accuracy, but quicker and easier) or you can get the analytics data of your Instagram account and figure out the best possible publish times for your unique account and audience (might take longer but will likely be more accurate and effective).

Read more
Instagram is building a ‘nudity protection’ tool for your DMs
Instagram app on the Google Play Store on an Android smartphone.

Instagram's latest push to give users more control over what they see in the popular photo and video sharing app, may also include what users see in their DMs as well.

On Wednesday, The Verge reported that Instagram was working on a new (optional) tool that would hide unwanted nude photos sent to users via DMs. The still-in-development feature was spotted by Alessandro Paluzzi, who posted a screenshot of the tool on Twitter.

Read more
Instagram appears to be down. Here’s what we know so far
Instagram being used on an iPhone.

Instagram appears to be down right now for a lot of people and so you're if you're having trouble accessing it or its features, you're not alone.

As per usual, frustrated Instagram users came to Twitter to vent their frustration at not being able to access or use IG. And user reports on Downdetector have confirmed that the photo and video sharing app was experiencing an outage. It's worth noting, however, that some users on Downdetector have already reported that Instagram is back for them, though they also report that the app is still glitchy or buggy.

Read more