Whether Internet fame can transfer to television, paper, the screen or the stage depends largely on money. It’s difficult to imagine the notoriety of one YouTube video translating into, say, a whole television series. Remember what happened to the Geico cavemen
The Internet might expose people, but talent is still a requirement for long-term fame. The band OK Go may have one stunning music video
, but it hasn’t helped the fact that their music is mediocre. What do 31 million video hits actually equate to, apart from ad revenue?
Online celebrity might be too new to be analyzed. The data on lasting impressions, versus flashes in the pan, simply isn’t available yet. But as Alice Marwick indicated, the niches housing online celebrities are often too narrow to fit more than a few thousand devoted fans, and few of those fans actually want to pay to be entertained. The Internet is one more avenue for talented people to explore their art, test the waters, and gain exposure, and there’s plenty of bandwidth left over for attention-seekers and one-hit wonders.