Ellie Zeiler, 17, creator of TikTok with more than 10 million followers, received an email in June from Village Marketing, an influencer marketing company. He said the email was about a vaccination campaign being run by the White House.
Would Ms. Zeiler, a high school student who usually posts short fashion and lifestyle videos, be willing to take part in a White House-sponsored campaign encouraging her audience to get vaccinated against coronavirus?
"There is a huge need to raise awareness within the age of 12-18," Village Marketing said in Ms. Zeiler's business email. "We are moving fast and we only have a few seats available, so let us know as soon as possible."
Ms Zeiler quickly agreed, joining a wide-ranging campaign to address an increasingly urgent challenge in the fight against pandemic: vaccination of young people, who have the lowest vaccination rates of any eligible age group in United States.
Less than half of all Americans ages 18 to 39 are fully vaccinated, compared with more than two-thirds of people over the age of 50, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And about 58 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds have not yet received a single dose of the vaccine.
To reach young people who have not been vaccinated, the White House has recruited an army of more than 50 Twitch streamers, YouTubers, TikTokers and 18-year-old pop star Olivia Rodrigo, all with huge online audiences. State and local governments have launched similar campaigns, in some cases paying "local micro influencers" - those with 5.000 to 100.000 followers - up to $ 1.000 a month to promote Covid-19 vaccines to their fans.
The White House's efforts are a counterattack to the growing tide of vaccine misinformation that has flooded the internet, where vaccine activists may be so strong that some young creators say they chose not to talk about vaccines. avoid a politicized reaction.
Source of information: nytimes.com