In this essay, I argue that the stories from Columbine and Virginia Tech in the U.S. and Jokela High School in Finland betray a disconcerting dystopia of user-generated content gone wrong at a moment of much Web 2.0 hype. I use their actions and the subsequent reaction as case-study portals into an era of celebrity anarchy and narcissistic youth. I then contextualize these youth shooters within a generational context of purported narcissism—suggesting that their attacks are both premeditated as well as premediated. I conclude by pondering the challenges journalists face in complying with youth shooters' demand for celebrity and the possibility that, in the self-broadcasting world of Web 2.0, their role as gatekeepers may be more confounded than ever.
Communication, Culture, & Critique
Serazio, Michael, "Shooting for fame: Spectacular youth, web 2.0 dystopia, and the celebrity anarchy of generation mash-up" (2010). Communication Faculty Publications. 13.
Serazio, Michael. 2010. Shooting for fame: Spectacular youth, web 2.0 dystopia, and the celebrity anarchy of generation mash-up. Communication, Culture, & Critique 3 (3) 416-434.