6031 Highway 7 Markham
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Do you enjoy hearing about the latest thought-provoking research? The Scholars’ Hub speaker series features discussions on a broad range of topics, with engaging lectures from some of York’s best minds. The Scholars’ Hub events are done in partnership with Vaughan Public Libraries, Markham Public Library, and Aurora Public Library. We invite students, alumni and all members of the community to join us.
Influencers, superfans and microcelebrities: are our children labourers in the digital factory?
Dr. Natalie Coulter (Assistant Professor, Department of Communication Studies) and Tamar Faber (PHD Candidate)
Advertising to children has changed drastically in the past decade. Instead of relying on traditional costly forms of advertising, companies are turning to digital outlets to promote their products. Paid child influencers such as Sophie Grace, JoJo Siwa and the ubiquitous Ryan from Ryan’s Toys are YouTube Stars that dominate the landscape. But there are also countless other young people on social media promoting branded content. This might be to a small closed network of followers and it may be by an enthusiastic fan who wants their friends to love their favourite brand. However, for the most part, much of this promotional work is wholly uncompensated with the children rarely being paid. Our work begins by determining if these practices constitute as work, and by defining child labour in the new social networking economy. How can we protect our children from being unpaid workers in the digital factory?