Today Geek is Chic. In fact Mark Zukerberg‘s wedding got the Paparazzi as excited as Lady Gaga’s latest world tour. In our day and age it seems as though there’s been a paradigm shift. Techies now draw the same attention as Hollywood celebs. Ironically, unlike many “reality stars,” techies are famous for actually doing (or creating) something.
Take Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his lady Priscilla Chan Zuckerberg (we wrote about their Facebook wedding a few weeks ago); after getting married in Europe, gossip tabloids went crazy over the couple. Despite all the secrecy, the couple was caught by the Paparazzi in Italy aboard an expensive boat. There were also pictures of the couple walking through the ancient streets of Italy, published throughout Celeb type magazines, much as if the duo are Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie.
Remember the can of beans Paris Hilton ate from in jail, that later sold for $300 on eBay? Zukerberg’s dinner receipt reportedly sold for much more. Henceforth, the admiring public knows that the Zuckerberg’s ate artichoke ravioli with tea at Nonna Betta in Rome.
Today technology stories are just as popular as Hollywood stories. The Silicon Valley crowd is definitely being watched and some social psychologists suggest that’s because they are better examples of ordinary people who became rich and famous by doing something extraordinary. It is easier to figure out why they’re famous than the latest Hollywood dreamboat. Interestingly, they aren’t dashingly beautiful people; they can be rather ‘ordinary,’ and therefore, perhaps more relatable. Their story gives the public the vicarious experience of becoming suddenly rich and famous. Technology has opened that door to ANYONE innovative and determined enough to become “one of them.” Even a 17 years old.
Geek is chic. That’s why technology blogs are sexy – and they don’t address just the subject of technology. They also include gossip about Bill Gates, Michael Arrington and Steve Jobs. Traditional publications, like People and Vanity Fair, often profile such tech mavens (and their eccentricities) to the mainstream.
So what makes tech guys like Mark Zuckerberg so interesting? Well for one thing, his billions exceed those of Oprah Winfrey. But more interestingly, it’s that Zuckerberg is so concealed. I’ve watched the Facebook movie, yet Zuckerberg’s character remains a mystery –it’s that mystery that’s become part of his mystique.