The Scottish Mail on Sunday

Social media is turning us into a bunch of cannibals


HOW predictabl­e that when the Pandora’s box of social media burst open, a seething swarm of venomous wasps would be released.

And how different from the ideal we were sold for years.

We were told that everyone would have a voice, leading to richer and more informed commentary. There would be objective competitio­n to traditiona­l media, often portrayed as being in the pockets of advertiser­s and over-mighty owners. The voice of the people would have no investment in anything other than sharing fair-minded and honest views.

The reality has turned out to be a dog-eat-dog world where, at least in the fashion and lifestyle arena where I worked, the hundreds of bloggers, influencer­s and podcasters are often proving to be cannibals with ferocious appetites, each new generation eagerly devouring the previous at the earliest opportunit­y.

Recent victims of this are two of the early social media success stories – the French illustrato­r, photograph­er and blogger Garance Dore, and Leandra Medine Cohen, the New Yorker who founded the popular Man Repeller fashion site.

I take no sides in these pile-ons – what fascinates me is how they illustrate that this supposedly brave new world is in no way any purer or kinder than what went before. In fact the opposite.

Dore, 46, who was a familiar and much-liked figure on the fashion circuit, has been called out in an article titled ‘What’s going on with fashion darling Garance Dore?’ in a small online magazine called Ensemble. The crime? Her seemingly Covid-careless travel itinerary taking in

New Zealand and LA, Scotland and Corsica, plus a recent vaxhesitan­cy post to her 707,000 followers on Instagram.

Then Medine Cohen gave an inter

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