Ariana Grande, Selena Gomez and Justin Bieber are among the stars using social media to counter industry pressures
Our pop stars are burning out. Ariana Grande, after a hellish year marked by a cancelled engagement, a terror attack and the death of an ex-boyfriend, has hit back at fans angry over the delay to her latest music video: “Been thru hell and back and i’m doing my best to keep going”. Selena Gomez, currently receiving mental health treatment, posted on Instagram: “I am taking a social media break. Again.” Even Rihanna, widely perceived as impervious to industry pressures, became short with an interviewer last month when asked, yet again, when she plans on releasing new music. “Who sent you?” she replied.
Why now? The pop industry has never been particularly kind to its artists. Derided as the most commercial (and therefore least serious) music genre, its stars are often regarded less as human beings, more as vessels for bangers. The factory-line churn of having to release an album every two years, with a promotional cycle followed by a world tour – all while maintaining a pleasant, marketable and “always on” public persona – has always been a pressure.
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