These days, almost every member of Gen Z is on social media. Whether it be Twitter, Instagram, Tiktok, or a combination, we are constantly connected. Therefore, we spend a good part of our daily lives engaging with influencers’ content. Before writing this article, I looked at my Screen Time report from last week. I had spent approximately five hours a day using one of those applications. So, for almost thirty five hours that week, I had been viewing influencers’ accounts. While a lot of it might be beautiful girls just posing in front of their cameras, I have grown to frequent accounts with more substance. There are kids around my age and older who are using the platform they’ve been given to inspire action and change. I completely agree with Diane von Furstenburg when she said, “I have always believed that when you have a voice, you have an obligation to use that voice to empower others.” These Gen Z influencers are using a voice that resonates with so many children around the world to call for action and they deserve recognition for doing so.
Amelie Zilber is a social media icon signed with LA models. As the daughter of Christine Zilber, successful founder of Jouer Cosmetics, she definitely grew up with privilege. However, she remains one of the most active Tiktok stars for social issues. She created TwoMinute Times to allow for an easy, quick way for the youth to inform themselves about the news. On Tiktok, she frequently uploads content with information about the torture done to Uyghur Muslims in Chinese “reeducation camps” and BLM. She is also a vocal advocate for the power of voting as well. She also is an avid supporter of voting and constantly reminds those who are able to vote when election day comes. Amelie makes sure to use her voice for the voiceless and advocates for causes she believes in through her mass social media following.
If you’ve had access to the Internet in the last 12 months, you likely know who Charli D’Amelio is. The sixteen year old dancer has become the most followed person on Tiktok through her striking beauty and amazing dance skills. Tiktok has allowed her to get deals with high-end fashion brands like Prada, represent Morphe 2, and even write her own novel. While her dances and vlogs are fun to watch, her activism on social media is much more valuable. Her fan base is enormous and the majority of it is made up of Gen Zers. She is constantly promoting body positivity in her tweets, Tiktoks, and Instagrams stories. She has linked numerous petitions and ways to take action for what’s going on in Lebanon, China, and the racism against people of color in our own country, the United States. Her content always keeps me and thousands of others aware, educated, and feeling positive about ourselves.
This article unfortunately had to be narrowed down to the two influencers that have inspired me the most. However, there are hundreds of Gen Zers using their social media to better lives. The important thing to remember, however, is that it doesn’t just have to be people with huge platforms! Any one of us with a voice needs to use it to speak up on subjects we believe in. We owe it to ourselves and to those suffering around us to demand change. This is why thousands of us took the streets in countless cities across the United States. This is why we flooded petitions on Change.org to seek justice for numerous issues affecting people worldwide. This is why we convinced so many of our families to donate to the Red Cross for Lebanon after seeing the effects it had through our Tiktok. We may be young and have a lot to learn, but it is never too early or too late for any of us to take a stand and join forces to improve this world one step at a time. These influencers do it everyday, and they empower me with their voices. During the past six months, I have signed over a hundred petitions. I plan on donating to the BLM movement and educating myself every day on how I can be aware. I have never felt more fulfilled or with purpose than these last few months, and I don’t plan on changing that, ever. The truth about our generation is that there are more of us that feel the exact same way that I do. Let’s follow in the footsteps of our generation’s leaders and show that anyone of any age can make a difference.
I’m Sol Robert. I am fifteen years old and have lived in Miami, FL my whole life. I attend Ransom Everglades Upper School where I participate in the speech and debate team, the varsity dance team, and Neighbors in Need to aid the homeless, which I am also secretary of. I love my family, friends, and the arts. I am very interested in studying in the field of genetics. I love to write and being involved in the community around me. I am so excited to be a part of an opportunity to study Gen Z and be able to be a positive voice in the world today!