Living a life online: influencers in the Pandemic

In conversation with Yorkshire based vlogger, Molly Thompson, Meg Howe discusses all things 'content creator'

Meg Howe
22nd March 2021
Instagram: @beauty_spectrum
Twenty-one year old, Molly Thompson has been creating online content since she was fourteen. Like many, she has been able to transform her hobby into a career that provides her with a steady income. However, as someone who in self-employed, and had no furlough scheme to fall back on, how were content creators like Molly impacted by the Covid-19 Pandemic? I had the joy of speaking to Molly about the world of online influencers, and the affect that the Pandemic has had on her work.

Over the last year, Molly’s plans for content have been significant restricted by the Pandemic. After finishing her Foundation Degree, Molly had big plans to travel. In January 2020, Molly back-packed around Australia for six weeks, and while this was fun for and an experience that she enjoyed, Molly says that this worked well as content and drove her channel in the direction that she wanted to take it throughout 2020. However, as we all know, the Pandemic meant that many of our plans were ruined.

While Molly says that she found the first period of lockdown the hardest, she was forced to “think outside the box” with her ideas; becoming a lot more imaginative and creative in the process. Molly’s content is not the only thing to have changed. Along with all of us, Molly now has to work from home. She is lucky in the fact that much of her job could take place from where ever she fancied – which was evidence when she travelled Australia – however, one of the biggest impacts Molly (and many other content creators) have faced, is the lack of in-person meetings. Molly says she would travel to London multiple times a week, which is where he management company is based, but now has her meetings via online Platforms such as Zoom.

Molly has felt unable to post about these parts of her day due to the fear of receiving hate comments online

As with all of us, this pandemic has had huge implications, whether that be on our work, education or social lives. After my conversation with Molly, I realised that we often think of ‘influencers’ as having a bit of an easy ride, however, they have also been impacted by this pandemic. While Molly was able to reel off many negative impacts that the pandemic has had, it is important to try and take something good from what has been an incredibly horrible situation. Molly says she was able to spend so much more time with her family, and with the four of them spending more time at home, they grew closers and have spent a lot more quality time together. Molly also started a business venture, and is the co-founder of Peach Street Clothing, a sports and lounge-wear company. Molly said had no prior experience in business, but she was presented with this opportunity during the first lockdown and thought she would take it.

However, as a result of the continuous lockdowns and the constant change in regulations, Molly feels as though she’s had to censor what she has put up online. As we all understand, the internet can be a horrible place, with online trolls and cyber-bullying being an increasing problem. While the regulations have, at times, allowed for meetings out doors and walks with another person, Molly has felt unable to post about these parts of her day due to the fear of receiving hate comments online. She explained that she feels pressure to appear a certain way online, due to these comments. Something that is important to take away from this is to remember to be kind, you don’t always know what people are going through, especially when times are tough right now!

One thing that has come of ‘influences’ during the Pandemic, is the Dubai scandal. Many content creators went over-seas, to areas such as Dubai, claiming it was for essential work purposes. What we can see from this pandemic, is that many influencers are able to do their job just fine from home! When I asked Molly for her opinion, she said that she worries that many content creators will now been associated with this behaviour and portrayed in a negative light. In her words, “it is only a small proportion who act like this”.

With the easing of restrictions on the horizon, Molly hopes to be able to travel more, and continue making the content that she loves!

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AUTHOR: Meg Howe
Passionate History student and Educator

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