18 'Influencers' Who Let A Tiny Amount Of Fame Go To Their Head

Kasia Mikolajczak
woman posing for a selfie holding her phone
Unsplash | Mateus Campos Felipe

Nowadays, everybody and anybody can call themselves "influencers." As soon as somebody hits a certain amount of followers, they seem to feel entitled, and I'm sure a few of us have witnessed some odd behavior.

So when a Redditor asked, "What’s the smallest amount of internet fame/clout that you’ve seen go to someone’s head?" folks sure had a lot to say about it. Are you curious to check it out? Me too, so let's go.

This Self-Proclaimed Star

Yellow sports car
Unsplash | Tim Meyer

"Friend was in a video at a car meet that went viral back say 2011-2012. He said like eight words and couldn’t see him but you could hear him. He would go around telling people that he is 'famous' for being in a viral YouTube video. I was like 'if you have to announce you are famous, you might not be as famous as you think, Broski.'"

Oh, my goodness. That's right.

This Hero

Unsplash | Patrick

"A guy from my hometown who was sort of a sleazeball helped some elderly folks escape a fire. The act itself was commendable and he deserved the recognition he received in local media and he went viral for a week or two but uh….five plus years after the fact he was still using that as a way to try to get out of tickets or being cut off at the local bars after refusing to pay tabs. My brother encountered his Instagram recently and his self-description says something like 'Unspoken hero, DM me for details' lmao."

Haha, talking about being humble about it, right?

This Aspiring Travel Influencer

two women walking to a private plane
Giphy | Queenpins

"I work for a company that books luxury travel, think $20000 packages. A woman contacted us wanting a free trip in exchange for posting it on her blog, proudly proclaiming that she had 800 followers. My coworker's dog photo account has more followers."

Ah, you've got to start somewhere.

This Bad Deal

hand holding a cell phone with Instagram on it
Unsplash | Maddi Bazzocco

"I worked as the head of sales for a company and the owner was enamored with influencers and how they could build his business. I spoke with an influencer with about 20k followers and the deal we offered was $400 commission on every sale of a product that was about $1500 and it was in line with the type of stuff she shilled. We also offered her products for free and it was essentially worth $3k retail. First, she ghosted for a month, then came back asking for more money. I learned that unless you are an absolute top-level influencer, the whole thing is a grift."

This type of Influencer gives others a bad name.

This TikTok Star

woman looking at her cell phone and laughing
Giphy | Originals

"The guy from TikTok dancing in that parade to 'I’m just thinking with my d****.' He went home to Indianapolis and started doing meet and greets with people at local car dealerships lol."

What? That's hilarious, no? I wonder how many people went to that.

This Vine Failure

woman making a drink
Unsplash | Helena Lopes

"A girl I was friends with posted a few videos on Vine back in the day and they blew up. I mean, really blew up. She was interviewed by newspapers, did sketches for the local radio station, and was even on TV. For Scotland, that was pretty shocking, because we don't normally do well in this sort of thing. She quit her managerial job at the supermarket she worked at, convinced that she was going to be famous from Vine."

"This was when being an 'influencer' or 'content creator' was relatively new. She cut everyone out of her life that was hesitant about the decision, and that included me. We'd been friends with her for around seven years at that point. Long story short, she failed. She now works in a nightclub at the bar. She had three months of fame before she realized no one gave a [expletive] about the videos and she couldn't come up with anything funny to write and star in after it."

Aww, that's sad.

This Scam

woman wearing a black dress modelling
Unsplash | Pooja Chaudhary

"My little sister signed up for something on the internet that sent fake likes and comments to her Instagram. On one of her posts, it sent like seven fake accounts with purchased followers to 'ask her' to join their modeling agencies. She literally couldn’t stop talking about how she was going to get an agent and how she was the exact right height for the runway (she was 5’6” 😀), and how she needed her dad to give her $400 for a modeling course because she was going to be soooo famous."

Oh, no!

This Karma

woman drinking a cup of tea with writing "witnessing karma like."
Giphy | Shalita Grant

"Back in the day when I played WoW there was a guy on my server who had a tiny amount of name recognition. He was good at the game and spent a lot of time and energy organizing things. People on the server knew him and would ask for his help, or show him deference in order to get his attention on things."

"One day he put together an optional raid and at the end of the raid a particularly rare item dropped. Instead of an open roll — which was the standard at the time — he simply gave the item to his friend. When people complained, he said something like, "I'm so and so, I'm the most important raid leader on this server, you're all lucky to even be here right now, so shut up and deal with it."

"Well screenshots were taken and links were sent around. Dude ended up transferring off the server less than a week later because nobody would give him the time of day."

All I can say is — karma!

This Mommy Blogger

mom holding her daughter's hand
Unsplash | Sandra Seitamaa

"I worked as a hairstylist (certified but can’t do it anymore due to nerve damage) and this lady made an appointment for her newly one-year-old child. At first, all she wanted for him was to clean up around the ears and neck because it was getting kind of long. Kid is SCREAMING. This is his first haircut ever. I’m being super patient and slow. It was my last one of the day so I’m not worried about time. She then says 'I’m an influencer and I take photos of my kids all day. I need this to look perfect. This is his first haircut and you’re [expletive] it up.' So to try and calm her down while also still keeping my composure, I asked, 'Oh, an influencer? What do you do? Like what platform?' And she looked me dead in my eyes and said, 'Well I gained fame because my daughter died.' ….. I got silent from there. But just as we were starting to finish up, she says, 'I hate it. Can you do a skin fade on him?' Girl HES 1!! He’s screaming at scissors. I’m not taking loud clippers next to his head."

"I tried to explain that if he moves while I have clippers near him like that, it could just make it even worse. I told her there’s a barber shop right across the street if she wanted to try going there. She took photos of me without my knowledge or permission and posted them on her Instagram (100k followers) and bashed me. I was 20 and had just graduated from hair school. I did tell her that before the appointment as well. When she posted photos of his head the next day, not only had he just woken up so his hair was messy, but it also looked like she had tried to 'fix' it at home. The other (senior) stylist that had been with me in the salon during the whole thing saw how I did his hair and she was shocked at the posted photos because it is not how I did it. It still cracks me up a few years later, but now I don’t trust mommy bloggers."


This Cool Mention

man saying "Dude. Noice."
Giphy | Nightcap

"I made a really [crappy] two-part video on 'How to get out of Elo Hell' for League of Legends back in 2012 before the game was suuuuuuper popular. My video somehow got 150k views and a random dude in a game asked me 'Hey are you that guy from YouTube?' Lol it was my only mini celeb moment. I’ll cherish it forever.

Ha, ha, go ahead and cherish that moment.

These Pushy Parents

phone with YouTube screen on
Unsplash | Christian Wiediger

"There's a kid I work with who's (I believe) seven-years-old, and he's a 'YouTube influencer.' By that, I mean the kid's parents made a YouTube channel that follows the same format as stuff like Ryan's World, got lucky with one video that got around 10,000 views (all of their others barely have a hundred), and it immediately went to their head. The kid's dad refers to himself as his 'manager' and answers questions on the kid's behalf, they hand out business cards with all their social media info, and they even GOT THE KID'S NAME LEGALLY CHANGED to the name he uses on YouTube. The worst part is the kid seems indifferent at best to all of this. It's 100% his parents pushing it on him."

Wow! I feel bad for this kid, alright.

This Odd Behavior

guy saying "that sucks!"
Giphy | Audacy

"Being a moderator in a small forum/discord server/community. Seen it so many times.

When I join a new community I ALWAYS look at the histories of the most active mods. Those people will completely ruin a community of otherwise cool people."

Ah, that sucks.

This Delusion

black and white photo of man standing in front of a screen in a studio
Pexels | Pexels

"I worked with a guy and every time he met someone new he had to tell them he was an actor. He had a YouTube channel with 47 subscribers and called himself something embarrassing for a man his age."


This TikToker

man shaking his head embarassed
Giphy | Yellowstone

"There is this TikToker who drags tinder profiles and this one profile was of a man bragging about being an actor and telling everyone to google him. He was a background actor which is a fine job but literally anyone can do it. Well, this cocky [expletive] made a TikTok account to go in the comments and talk about how awesome he was and continued to tell people to Google him. He paid $3000 plus yearly fees to join SAG-AFTRA despite it offering no benefit to his work. He did it just to brag. His profile said he works in SAG. In SAG?"

Oh gosh, I've seen a few people like that while I worked as an extra.

This Bartender

bartender making a drink at the bar
Unsplash | Ambitious Creative Co. - Rick Barrett

"This sounds like a guy I worked with. He was in his late 30s and had been bartending for about 15 years. He never got cast for so much as an extra but every time a customer would say, 'this drink is awesome, you're a great bartender.' He would immediately tell them that he isn't, he's an actor, and bartending pays the bills. It was so uncomfortable. One time he looked James McAvoy dead in the eye and said, 'yea, I'm an actor too.' I ran to the back to make sure no one saw me literally crying from laughter."

I wonder what James McAvoy said to him after that.

This Scene

Kim Kardashian saying "Eww. This is so cringe."
Giphy | Saturday Night Live

"I was at a birthday party at a very popular restaurant that had a huge line out the door all night, every night. When the reservation was made, the host was warned that 30 minutes past that time slot, anyone who hasn’t shown up yet would have to wait in line with everyone else. Of course, some people showed up super late, made a scene at the door, and texted the host to tell them that they were just going to go to another party instead because the line was too long. The host decided the best way to handle this would be to go on social media and encourage his followers to @ the restaurant and make wildly false accusations. The host and his friends were boasting that the restaurant had no idea who they were messing with and would surely regret this once it blew up on social media due to his 'very large following.'"

"The owner of the restaurant got a notification about the mention and knew it was our table because the host had already complained about the bouncer. The owner came over to very politely explain the reservation policy and ask that the comment be taken down since the restaurant did nothing wrong and this was uncalled for. The keyboard warriors shrank like children being scolded by their parents; I don’t think I’ve ever had more second-hand embarrassment."

I wouldn't want to be there for that.

This Entitled You-Know-What

woman being filmed in a studio
Unsplash | Austrian National Library

"A new local TV anchorwoman was trying to pay for her dinner at a restaurant with a check. The restaurant didn't take checks — it was posted all over the front door she walked through. She stood up and starts screaming at the waitress, 'Do YOU know who I AM?!?' The waitress said no and walked off to get her manager. Needless to say, she didn't get to pay with a check."

"Two weeks later, the same anchorwoman came into the department store I worked at. She had a mound of clothes in her arms and threw them on the counter, asking what kind of discount she gets for being a local celebrity. My coworker told her no such thing existed. She pushed the pile of clothes off of the counter and told my coworker that she needed to learn how to treat the upper class better. Yeah, she's not our local TV anchorwoman anymore."

OMG, the nerve of some people.

This Strange Behavior

Keanu Reeves saying "You're Breathtaking."
Giphy | Mobius

"The guy who turned Keanu Reeves calling him breathtaking once at a cyberpunk showcase into his entire brand, even making merch about the situation."

What? How did I not hear about this before? I need to find out more about this story.

Okay, I see why people don't like influencers.

two young women acting in front of their cell phone placed on a tripod
Pexels | Pexels

There's a way to go about things, and there's a way not to do it. When you learn the difference, you can call yourself an influencer. It doesn't matter how many followers you have or whether your video went viral you should still stay humble. That's what separates cool people from the wannabes. Am I right?