Teen fans use twitter to mobilise online – and offline

“Then I saw his face… now I’m a Belieber”. If The Sun’s news story, telling how 300 girls broke into ITV London’s studios to meet their idol Justin Bieber, is anything to go by then it really is that easy.

The teen throb was recording Alan Carr’s Summertime Specstacular when the diehard fans stormed past security barriers – plus our very own Daisy and Tayler.

“We suddenly saw loads of girls screaming and running up the driveway at the back of ITV studios! It was scary!” reports a bewildered Tayler. Luckily, managers closed the main studio doors before true Fandemonium – and indeed Alan’s glasses – broke loose.

If you’re questioning how a lustful group of tweenagers synchronized such an orchestrated affair, social media may provide an answer. One fan’s comment on the article reveals all:

“Us fan girls revolve our lives around Justin Drew Bieber, we may have school but everything…..EVERYTHING is about him. We have twitters dedicated to him where we spend hours tweeting him to follow us. We have tumblrs. .. thinking about someone for years then finally getting the chance to meet them is crazy! There’s nothing to describe it it’s like the best feeling in the world.”

We are doing a lot of research around fan networks at the moment – how and why followers communicate with each other over their hero and the real life outcomes of these online (and sometimes quite finely tuned) operations.

Using Twitter and Tumblr as a tool to connect with your idol can effectively bring fans together from all corners of the globe to create an unstoppable army of devotees, narrowly missed by Liberty842 during their firsthand experience of the extreme end of Beiber Fever. With Twitter pages now dedicated to meeting your icon, it surely won’t be long before a new horde of Beliebers are out in force.

One Direction fan tweet

Twitter also allowed us to speak directly to One Direction fans planning to come down to the Alan Carr show for the band’s first ever chat show interview. Many have stayed Chatty Man fans ever since, proving Twitter as an invaluable tool to gain and maintain new audiences.

We spotted on Twitter a more primal example of a One Direction fan’s desperate attempt to spot the teen heart throbs outside the ITV studios (note: caps and swear words mean business):


A nice story I came across told how almost 4,000 people used Facebook, Youtube and Twitter help a young girl suffering from cancer to meet her idol, Taylor Swift.

After Lexi Barnett was denied by record executives at a US concert to meet Taylor, a Penn State University student-run philanthropy organization – known as THON – took matters into their own hands via social media, to eventually catch the attention of a fellow student who had “meet-and-greet” passes for her next show.

Birds of a feather really do flock together – all it takes is a tweet.

By Emma Rink @emmarink