Is based on revealing your personal information, being an open book, detailing not only your wins, but your losses, your imperfections, this is what bonds people to you.
But just like the internet flipped the script for music, turning a model of scarcity into plentitude, the makers cannot see this distinct change.
It's not that Kim Kardashian is famous for nothing, she may have no talent in the traditional sense, but she's got a life, she's got a story, and she keeps telling it again and and again, the public has not been able to get enough of it, until recently, when ratings for "Keeping Up With The Kardashians" started to fade, but she struck when the iron was hot, with a videogame, with brand extensions, she's the new model.
Of course if you're Adele, this model does not apply.
But how many Adeles are there? ONE!
And it's not so different for the movie business, where the actors were two-dimensional to begin with. Movies, when done right, are larger than life, music, when done right, is life itself, but neither have been doing it right recently. And for years, publicists in the film business have kept publications at bay, negotiated for covers, kept certain topics out of print. But that's anathema now, when performers go on Howard Stern and talk about their sex life and then the word is spread all over the internet.
This is a sea change. We no longer want to look up to you, we want to know you're just like us, but with a bit more success!
Who can relate to the faceless acts populating the hit parade? Of course prepubescent girls align, but they're a limited population, and if you can make bank appealing to them, good for you, but you're leaving so much money on the table. What we want are artists we can all relate to, who are revealing their warts.
Now don't confuse this with a "Parade" magazine profile. We don't want to know now that you have a new project you're pushing that you have two kids who are doing great in school and you love everybody, that don't play no more. You've got to say you take Ambien to go to sleep. Because you're up all night helping your kid with their homework that is beyond your limits. That you cheated at math to get through high school and your child has ADD. Suddenly, you're a media star. And all this is unnecessary if you're great, but almost no one is anymore. Before, it was enough to run the gauntlet to get a record deal, with limited product you got exposure on radio and in print, you got a leg up. But now you're not only competing with hundreds of thousands of projects, you're competing with the history of recorded music, all available online!
And don't pooh-pooh this approach, it's really no different than it was in the old days, when you were a bar band, a regional act. You weren't good enough to make it on the national stage, but you had fans, who schlepped your equipment, who gossiped about you, who thought you were the beez kneez. Now it's the middling acts who fulfill this role, own who you are! You're not a superstar, you're a vehicle for your fans' fulfillment, give them what they want, YOUR LIFE!
TV has figured this out. With endless dramas about real life. Tons of reality shows. Sure, the movie studios are trying to appeal to kids and those who don't speak English by making high concept superhero films, but the joke is on them, those franchises are stumbling, people want something they can sink their teeth into.
So when you read about the YouTube stars, the winners on Snapchat and Instagram, don't laugh at them, THEY'RE SMARTER THAN YOU! THEY'VE FIGURED IT ALL OUT! You watch these clips, look at these pictures and don't get it, you don't see their talent.
But you do see their humanity! You get a peek into their lives.
P.S. This is why fans are addicted to the Taylor Swift/Katy Perry feud. Hell, Katy's decision to tell the truth about it, the genesis on Carpool Karaoke, was far more interesting than her new track, although it does make you want to listen to hear the diss (don't bother, it's not worth it). But when the public sees squeaky clean Taylor Swift on the losing end of battle, they can't get enough. Funnily enough, this is how TS won to begin with, by opening up her heart in her country songs, before she decided she was Teflon and only barked back. But she's got it wrong, you own your flaws, you fall on your own sword, and then people embrace you MORE!