MANILA -- Bretman Rock on Tuesday acknowledged the "self-entitlement" often associated with influencers, and reminded those who are looking to make their mark on social media to not do it solely for its perceived benefits.
The Filipino social media star made the statement during his appearance in DigiCon 2021, a virtual conference organized by the Internet and Mobile Marketing Association of the Philippines.
Citing stories he discovered on platforms like Twitter and TikTok, Bretman Rock lamented how some influencers think they can use their fame to demand freebies and other perks.
"There are just some influencers that really go to restaurants and think their fame is going to pay for the meal. Or that they're going to get their nails done and [say], 'I'll post on my story, Ate, and that will pay for it,'" he said.
"But I wasn't raised like that. My mom worked servicing people, my family worked very honest jobs," he continued. "And I think a misconception that people have is, 'Just because you're famous, things should be handed to you.' And sometimes, that causes people to want to have fame, or start influencing because of that, so they can get the perks of fame."
Bretman Rock went on to stress that being an influencer is all about authenticity, saying that people can easily see one's true intentions.
"If you are joining the influencer world for the perks of it, don't," he said. "Because sometimes most people will work all their lives and not even get anything. Focus on why you are doing this for your soul."
"I really shouldn't have to say that, but sometimes we have to be reminded," he added.
Meanwhile, Bretman Rock said he is thankful for all the projects he has been busy with this year, pointing out that he was initially "expecting the worst" given the events of 2020.
"I haven't really had the time to breathe," he said. "Everything is coming so fast and I'm so glad because it's great being busy."
When asked how he manages to consistently be able to connect with a wide audience effectively, Bretman replied: "I don't like to think of them as my audience, more like my family... Because I started really early, I grew up with these people and so that is why I have a deep connection with my audience."
"I connect with them because I see them as an equal," added Bretman Rock, who used to refer to himself as an "internet entertainer" since there was no such thing as an influencer when he started several years ago.
"I see my audience as my people and I don't see them as me above them."