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[In Brief] Most Beautiful Teenager

I stumbled upon (don’t ask me how) this Facebook page today. It’s called “Most Beautiful Teenager.”

Teens post photos of themselves on the page and see how many likes and comments they can rack up. Sometimes there’s a “scale” for the number of likes, usually going from “ugly” (100 likes) to “OUT OF THIS WORLD” (100,000 likes). The page itself posts photos too (the best ones, I’m guessing).

Both girls and guys post photos on the page, although most of the photos come from girls, and virtually everyone is white and thin.

The comments are pretty predictable, both the creepy ones and the hateful ones. Some people post photos asking to be added as a friend, or requesting “no hate” (they usually get it anyway). Here and here are two disturbing examples, but there are many.

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with valuing and taking pride in your appearance (to a reasonable degree, at least), and I’d take issue with anyone who slams these individual teens as vain or superficial.

But I think it says something about our culture as a whole that young people are willing to post pictures of themselves, with their full names attached, to a public page, knowing that they’re going to receive at least a few incredibly mean or creepy comments, just to see what others think of their looks.

All the casual racism, homophobia, and misogyny on the page is telling, too.

For the record, I don’t think the page should be shut down or anything like that. Nudity is banned, so it’s not breaking any laws, and it’s not like people can’t post photos publicly to their own profiles anyway. It’s just disturbing how many users it has, how many photos get posted, and how obsessively its fans defend it when criticisms come up on the page, as they sometimes do.

 

Comments

  1. says

    I’VE SEEN THIS PAGE TOO! I found it absolutely shocking, I mean I think I’m pretty confident but I couldn’t imagine posting a picture of myself on ‘Most Beautiful Teenager’! I mean come on! I think it’s a bit sad that people want the approval of strangers and, as you say, it is absolutely shocking how many likes this page has! Great post! :)

  2. says

    I have no problem taking pride in one’s appearance, but there’s something a little troubling about the energy and enthusiasm that manifests itself on this page. Beauty is ephemeral (except maybe for Audrey Hepburn) and certainly varies given the eye of the beholder. I wonder what it means for these teens themselves to put so much emphasis on a trait that will, in the full span of things, vanish except from one Facebook page.

  3. says

    I didn’t know this existed in so-called “Western” culture. I’m not from Asia myself but I’m obsessed with some Asian pop culture and they have similar concepts except they have whole websites dedicated to posting photos of yourself and getting rated on them. Here’s a Wikipedia page that explains it a bit. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eoljjang I don’t quite understand why, but some people put a lot of effort into being crowned as “best face.”