Celebrities are entertaining, but scientific research has debunked a theory about what celebrity status means.
We love celebrities, but there are a lot of layers to fame and fortune. For one thing, celebrities often speak up about causes that are important to them, and they warm hearts with charitable work and good vibes.
But on the flip side, celebrities are getting canceled left and right for their atrocious behavior. Just ask Chrissy Teigen, who fans are saying is well and truly canceled, and for a good reason.
As it turns out, though, scientific research suggests that there’s a limit to just how seriously the general public takes its celebrities. And the results are kind of surprising.
One Study Suggests That Fans Might Think Celebrities Are… Kind Of Dumb
The study is a bit dense, but the title tells most of the story: “The effect of source credibility on [BS] receptivity.” Basically, the study quoted “pseudo-profound” phrases to people, and when they attributed those phrases to celebrity sources, people were not impressed.
However, when the same “meaningless statements” were attributed to “Plato/Nietzsche/Einstein,” people were more likely to think they were actually profound and deep.
It’s a bit different than quoting Plato as coming from Brad Pitt, but the study itself was fascinating, if not a bit narrow in scope. Obviously, scientific minds would want to see further research in even more controlled ways.
The Research Shows That Fans Don’t Trust Celebrities
Whether the research is replicable or not, the bottom line is that the general public doesn’t seem to trust celebrities. While there’s a perception that anything a celeb says is gold, that might not really be the case, even in Hollywood.
If a celeb speaks gibberish, it seems like people are willing to call that out. They’re less likely to argue with Plato or Nietzsche, and that part is understandable. What’s amusing is that people didn’t hesitate to call out celeb BS.
So do fans just not trust celebrities? Taking this study as a standalone exhibit, outsiders could generally conclude that yeah, people are OK with calling out nonsense when it comes from celebrities. To an extent, at least.
Also, Celebrities Aren’t Experts, Say Fans
There is one noteworthy point to make about this and other pieces of research centered on celebrities and the public’s perception of them. A commenter gave an example of not trusting a scientific comment that Ben Affleck makes, but taking that same statement as gospel from Stephen Hawking (or any other scientist, essentially).
The bottom line is that people are more likely to believe actual experts, whether they’re celebrities or not. If Brad Pitt recommends that people don’t shower regularly, fans might be repulsed. But if a doctor said the same thing, they might be more open to hearing the reasoning behind it.
The bottom line? Unless a celebrity is a true, proven expert on the topic at hand, fans won’t give them the time of day. Makes sense, but then why are influencers a thing?
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About The Author
(1116 Articles Published)
Lane loves writing about celebs & their lives because it gives her an excuse to scroll through influencers’ feeds, catch up on the latest Hollywood gossip, and figure out where the heck all her favorite ’90s stars went when they dropped off fans’ radar. When she’s not writing, Lane likes binge-watching Netflix shows to an unhealthy degree.
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