Special Report by Ian Fawling
Justine Ezarik or iJustine as she's known by the masses has developed into the textbook definition of micro-celebrity. She is a self-proclaimed Mac user, blogger, internet lover and new media connoisseur from Pittsburgh, PA and those are the very least of her credentials. She also makes the claim that "she is the internet". Taking one long look at Justine's Tasty Blog Snacks website, I could not help making the comparison to Elle Woods, the obnoxiously likable sorority queen played by Reese Witherspoon in the movie Legally Blonde. I find iJustine to be equal parts cheeky and cheesy, but yet she is undeniably 100% pin-up girl for the modern geek. She is to technology reporting what iPhone is to the cell phone industry, smart, sexy and everybody secretly wants one of their own.
iJustine has slowly percolated her way into online micro-celebrity through a steady flow of campy video rampages on everything from iPhone love to Britney Spears (link). She first popped up on my radar with her highly publicized "iPhone Bill" video via Engadget. Her videos are a psychotic collection of eye candy too vast to number. Some clearly qualify as a horrible car wreck that you can't help staring at no matter how gory. Case in point is iJustine's video entitled "I Was A Lifecaster" featured on Valleywag.com, a self parody song that goes bad from the very first notes Justine sings, yet I patiently endured the madness to the bitter end like K-Fed holding out for his divorce settlement. Though often wildly over-the-top, Justine represents a refreshing change in the status quo when she's dishing on tech. Did I mention that she's damn sassy too! Attendees at Macworld 2008 have no clue what they are in for having Justine Ezarik on the loose with her video camera set on record.
I believe it's time for iJustine to make a leap into the big time
because the audience is listening. So Justine, I present to you my Top 10 list of career moves designed to super-charge your jump over to super-stardom.
an annual iJustine pin-up girl calendar with a featured "iJustine
Certified" gadget per calendar month. Sponsored by the manufacturers
with proceeds going to a charity of your choice. Your loyal blog
audience can vote on the final twelve photos. Have each calendar month
converted into iPhone and iPod Touch wallpapers.
2. Create a regular iJustine product review video for mass publication along with a text version with lots of photos. Include an "iJustine Certified" endorsement sticker with your photo that can be seen on all product packaging. A win-win for gadget manufacturers and tech sites who need a fresh perspective.
3. FOX TV desperately
needs a new Jillian Barberi. You can be to tech reporting what Jillian
was to sports weather casting. Why not iJustine on FOX or even Fox
4. Get out of "The Burg" kid! Pack up for New York or Los Angeles, secure a reputable agent and personal manager for TV and print work. Start thinking about someone big negotiating bigger media deals on your behalf. It's time! Because the timer on your fifteen minutes of fame has already started.
5. An iJustine action figure is the perfect idea. Include a miniature MacBook, video camera, tripod and iPhone. It allows everyone to get their hands on iJustine without tarnishing your divine image. Barbie, Bratz and now the iJustine doll.
6. An iJustine fan site is good (www.ijustinefan.com)
but having branded iJustine schwag is so much better. By all means you
should be selling "must-have" gear like iJustine playing cards, poker
chips, thumb drives, posters, hats and shot glasses. How about a
branded iPhone buffing cloth?
7. It's never too early to start thinking about a book deal that includes iPhone etiquette tips, product reviews and "how to become a micro-celebrity" the iJustine way. You make creating videos look easy, it is, but your book can give tips on just how easy.
8. iJustine in the friendly skies is the next big thing. Which airline has a sexy blonde reviewing the latest Apple products and accessories? The first one that wants to pay iJustine for an in-flight program, that's which one. A captive audience in the sky is exactly what is needed... iJustine Air will become all the rage.
9. Market your own
branded energy drink or even a high caffeine soda via white label. Hey
kids! Be high energy like me... drink iJustine soda. How about small
bags of tasty (blog) snacks? Yummy!
10. Host an annual iJustine technology fashion show at CES. Hot models sporting the hottest hand holdable technology on the catwalk. Video screens on stage highlight product lines by manufacturers who sponsor this major event where fashion meets consumer electronics. All captured on video for global live-casting. So hot!
Love her or mildly dislike her, I'm convinced that Justine Ezarik is a
certified marketable brand that has the potential to move from
micro-celebrity to iconic super-stardom. She is exactly what the
internet needs to counter balance a testosterone fueled world of tech
reporting where the watering holes are packed with two guys for every
guy. What did Gizmodo's Richard Blakely say when he walked into the
mens room at CES? "So this is where all the pricks hang out!" My point
exactly. (Blakely never said that)
Is iJustine the internet? Not yet!