On Twitter, the hashtag #etudiantspasinfluenceurs is at the top of the trends. A reaction to the government’s communication strategy, which targets precarious young people by calling on influencers.
On February 24, government spokesperson Gabriel Attal launched a monthly show on YouTube and Twitch called #WithoutFilter. The theme of this first program was the precariousness of young people affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. Invited to debate with Gabriel Attal, the influencers and youtubers EnjoyPhoenix, Fabian, Elise & Julia and Malek Délégué were present on the set. A strategy intended to target young people who are sometimes far from traditional media, but which has attracted many criticisms on Twitter, grouped behind the hashtag #etudiantspasinfluenceurs.
During the hour and a half that this broadcast lasted live, the celebrities of the social networks did not hesitate to tell the spokesperson of 31 years that “the young people are breaking the slab”, or that the “students are galley “and” depression “, and fear” cardboard diplomas “, as BFM TV reminds us.
A criticism of the show’s format was also made by EnjoyPhoenix (real name Marie Lopez), 25, followed by 5 million followers on Instagram: “I would find it great that next time there is. a journalist who is there to retort, because it is not my job. I just come to ask the questions that my community would like to put forward ”.
“They do not represent us in any way”
But criticism of the show has mostly come from social media, focusing more on the nature of the guests than on the debate itself. The hashtag #etudiantspasinfluenceurs has thus established itself at the top of the trends on the social network. A hashtag relayed among others by the national speaker of rebellious France Julie Garnier, and by the economist Thomas Porcher, as recalled by the journalist from BFM TV Raphael Grably.
Julie Granier posted the photo of two young people on her Twitter account, along with the hashtag “those we never see on TV” and this comment: “I present to you two students who are not influencers from Paris and Evry. During the day they are behind their Zoom course. In the evening in their 9m² room. And on weekends, they collect money so that they and all their comrades can fill the fridge a little ”.
Thomas Porcher, meanwhile, praised the students who launched the hashtag, saying that “for a government spokesperson to think that inviting three influencers on Twitch is enough to put young people to sleep, it’s really that you takes for idiots ”.
Well done to the students who started the hashtag #studentsnotinfluencers because frankly, for a government spokesperson to think that inviting 3 influencers on twitch is enough to put young people to sleep, it is really that he takes you for idiots. https://t.co/k8ENIwlt4M
– Thomas Porcher (@PorcherThomas) February 26, 2021
MEP EELV in the European Parliament Karima Delli also congratulated the students behind #etudiantspasinfluenceurs, considering that it is “ridiculous” to invite people “who are not concerned to talk about student distress”.
🙌🏽 Congratulations to the students for creating the hashtag #studentsnotinfluencers ! It’s ridiculous to invite people who are not concerned to talk about student distress! (Insecurity, loneliness, suicide, depression …)! THESE influencers do NOT REPRESENT students. https://t.co/nFQPKV9x3D
– Karima Delli (@KarimaDelli) February 26, 2021
The hashtag has been used in posts relayed or loved by thousands of Twitter users, such as this one, who are outraged at the “absolute shame” of inviting people “who are not concerned to talk about student distress ”.
Others questioned the standard of living of guests, such as Val, who said that “influencers already earn theirs thanks to networks and sponsors”. “They do not represent us in any way. If you want to give the floor to students, a little advice: invite students, ”he says to the government.
we study to earn a living while influencers already earn theirs thanks to networks and sponsors. they do not represent us in any way. if you want to give the floor to students, a little advice: invite students. #studentsnotinfluencers
– Val (@Pasta_Vox) February 26, 2021
An opinion shared on Twitter by this student, who claims to have “poignant testimonials from students to make you cry”. “It is not the one who does vlogging in Dubai during our Zoom lessons who represents us, we walk on the head there!”, She was indignant.
Invite me to the Elysee you will see me I know what we have been through I have poignant testimonies from students to make you cry, she’s not the one who does vlogging in Dubai during our zoom lessons who represents us. walk on the head there !!!! #studentsnotinfluencers
– Nei (@nrhxnn) February 26, 2021
Some users of the hashtag also pointed out that Gabriel Attal’s guests were “out of school”.
I strongly invite you to use the hashtag #studentsnotinfluencers because it is inadmissible to invite people 1) out of school 2) rich to talk about student problems and it would have been good form to give the floor to those concerned – at all events –
– Spinozette (@datsphilosophe) February 26, 2021
A suggestive video posted on TikTok and made on the sidelines of the show by some of the influencers in attendance was also criticized.
1 / Curious to invite young non-student influencers to the Elysée, very comfortable financially to represent students.
2 / result: they take the opportunity to shoot an obscene video in a high place of the Republic …#studentsnotinfluencerspic.twitter.com/0o4wKl3mze
– Jérémy Lne ن (@jeremylne) February 26, 2021
Some did not hesitate to speak of “political propaganda for 2022” on the part of the government.
I have already eaten white rice for 2 weeks I was losing weight like a koh lanta adventurer I was amorphous I slept all day. But the government’s priority is political propaganda for 2022?
– Shinichi Okazaki (@ stark0080) February 26, 2021
The Montpellier Solidaire student union, for its part, felt that the government’s choice to communicate through influencers “is not trivial”: using EnjoyPhoenix or McFly and Carlito would be a means “to depoliticize our demands while by reaching their audience, often very young ”.
Whether it is EnjoyPhoenix or McFly and Carlito, the government’s choice to communicate through influencers is not trivial: it is a way to depoliticize our demands while reaching their audience, often very young.#studentsnotinfluencers
– Student solidarity 34 (@ SolidairesEtu34) February 26, 2021
A few days earlier, Emmanuel Macron had indeed promised to participate in “an anecdotes competition” if the clip of the two youtubers McFly and Carlito recalling the barrier gestures crossed the bar of 10 million views. A goal achieved in three days.