Penn Badgley doesn’t find social media “fulfilling”, despite his intentions to use his public profile for good. The former “Gossip Girl” actor felt a responsibility to use his public profile to do good in the world but despite his “pure intention”, he became “overwhelmed” by the ideas of online popularity and thinks using his fame on the platforms was ultimately connected with being “wrapped up in ego and our materialist culture.
Speaking on the podcast “Baha’i Blogcast with Rainn Wilson”, he said: “The most meaningful form of action I saw, as a person who’d been on ’Gossip Girl’, as a person who had at this point hundreds of thousands of followers – yeah, because I got on social media late. If I had gotten on in the middle of ‘Gossip Girl’, I very well could’ve had millions upon millions – so I was thinking, the most meaningful contribution I have to make as an individual is on these platforms.
“And in trying to have a pure intention and honest interaction on these spaces, I also found that I was completely overwhelmed by being conscious of how many likes or retweets or whatever. It was such a convoluted way to be like, ‘acting’…
“It was not the most fulfilling or meaningful contribution that I could make as an individual seeking to better the world
The 34-year-old star doesn’t think the idea of celebrity is “just” and hopes it fades away in the years to come.
He said: “In some future vision of society, it should be just civilisation. I don’t think celebrity exists in the way that it does now.”
Penn recalled how he suffered an anxiety attack on a press tour two years ago when he met with “thousands of screaming” fans at a mall in Manila in the Philippines because it was such an “intense” experience.
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