It's that time of year again, where social media stops to watch the star-studded fashion event of the season– the Met Gala. The event's guest list has always been a point of contention. A front-row seat is a coveted spot, and the complete guest list is deliberately kept a secret until the last possible moment. This year, social media and press outlets alike have been buzzing more than usual, contributing to conversations about who "made the cut." The A list talent in question? TikTokers and social content creators alike.
The coveted invite and who should get it.
A few weeks ago, a cocktail of chaos was served on social media following a leaked seating chart. Addison Rae herself even chimed in on Twitter after being rumored to be placed next to Lady Gaga and Donatella Versace.
The Met Gala has become a pinnacle achievement for creators who have jumped a level of social status and now take up space at a venue that they didn't historically have a seat at the table (a growing trend over the last 10-years). With rumored guests like Emma Chamberlain and Charli D'Amelio, social media influencers are now part of the A list set of celebrities who grace the red carpet—or are at least important enough to be invited to the year's most prominent fashion event.
The social chatter surrounding the presence of TikTokers and influencers is met with mixed reactions, and the jury is out: whether we like it or not, elite creators are the new celebrities.
Social media weighs in.
Davis Burleson, host of What's Poppin? With Davis! is known for surveying bystanders at Washington Square Park on all topics under the sun. In a video with over one million views, he asked a park-goer for her thoughts on influencers attending the Met Gala? She was quick to share that the invite should be reserved for film or fashion stars—not so much for influencers.
We asked our team at Collectively if they think of influencers or celebrities when they hear the term Fashion Icons, and 84% of the team responded with "celebrities."
We asked our team at Collectively if they think of influencers or celebrities when they hear the term Fashion Icons—84% of the team responded with "celebrities."The team also weighed in on who they’d invite if they were in charge of the guest list, naming creators like Remi Bader, Christina (Tinx) Najjar, and Courtney Trop as top contenders.
Social media has always been a hub for discourse, and the Met Gala is no exception. Beyond the guest list, "netizens" share their points of view in real-time. From the interpretation (and critique) of a guest's themed look to meme-worthy moments— the Met Gala has always had its peanut gallery, all with their eyes raised when it comes to exclusivity.
The line between celebrity and influencer continues to blur.
When we think of the Met Gala and who gets to go, we often think of society's most prominent trailblazers from a range of artistries, like Beyoncé or Jared Leto. Its curated list of VIPs has always been illustrative of the most influential and emerging stakeholders across all artistic verticals. So, as we see entertainment dynamically shift into the digital sphere, the guest list will follow in stride—and the traditional scales of power and influence will start to tip (as it already has).
The digital natives said to be in attendance at the Met Ball this year leverage a digital-age-old appeal to publicity: click value. Their ability to spark conversation across their highly engaged followings and, in turn, shake the status quo make them as impactful as the traditional celebrities we'd expect to don Fashion's most sought-after finery.
The Met Gala is shifting as rapidly as the economy of the art and entertainment industries that its guests inhabit. Regardless of which content creators get on the list this year, we predict that we'll be seeing more social influencers show up on the scene in years to come.