Eminem once rapped about stans. Now, he wants to hear from them.
The real Slim Shady took to Twitter to announce that he’s sharing his number with his fans. If you text him, he claims, he will text you back.
Even though this is clearly just another marketing tool, the rapper empowered a whole bunch of deluded celebrity fans who think they have “access” to “their faves.”
It should go without saying that 313-666-7440 isn’t Eminem’s real number.
It’s a number given to him thanks to an app called Community, which is also used by the likes of Amy Schumer, Jennifer Lopez, and Sir Paul McCartney of The Beatles.
According to its website, Community is an app that enables:
direct and instant communication at massive scale, all through text messaging.
Though you can’t call the celebrity directly — doing so gives you an automated message claiming the “mailbox is full” — you can, in fact, get texts back from your favorite celebrity of choice, once you click on the link to sign up.
But Community makes clear that even though you’ll get “authentic engagement,” it may not be from Eminem. It may just be “from a member of his team.”
And most of the messages you’ll get from the rapper (or his team) will be nothing more than promotional communications about his upcoming livestreams, shows, and album releases.
In other words: it’s a marketing tool, not a friendship invitation. There’s no point in penning your own “Dear Slim” letter, because he’s not going to read it.
For the most part, Eminem keeps a low profile, only coming out when he’s trying to promote a new project. He doesn’t put his family in the spotlight, and that, too, is a deliberate move.
But thanks to social media, celebrity stans feel like they “know” their “fave.” This has led to increasingly deranged behavior from fans, some of which I’ve seen and experienced in my own life.
I’ve had fans call me up and threaten my life. I’ve had diatribe after diatribe written about me on social media for committing the “crime” of being in the vicinity of someone’s “celebrity twin flame,” when the deranged fan in question has never even met the celebrity.
I’ve even been shot at and stabbed.
And all of this by people who are in an imaginary relationship with celebrities. Someone who only “sees” a celebrity on social media — or Community — does not have a real relationship with them.
What Eminem calls stans, psychologists call parasocial relationships.
No one reasonable would argue that we all deserve a date with our favorite celebrity because we gushed about them on Tumblr and bought tickets to their movies. But having the power to perpetuate celebrity is not a license to issue ultimatums or attempt emotional blackmail. What demanding and sometimes deluded fans must realize is that they too are being watched and judged for how they present themselves in their miniature social media kingdoms. They would do well to make their relationships there lean more toward civil than tenuous.
In other words, Eminem said it best when he said, “you got some issues, Stan. I think you need counseling.”
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of CCN.com.