Can Instagram Influencers Add “Journalist” to Their Resumes? A Closer Look Into This Question Through Lauren Ellison Fox

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October 11, 2021

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CHARLESTON, S.C. — Born and raised in Charleston, S.C., Lauren Ellison Fox is a local mom who prides herself on being perfectly imperfect.

Fox is a practicing lawyer, real estate broker, small business owner, infertility and clean beauty advocate, and an Instagram influencer. Her Instagram account, @laurenisafox, has reached 22,900 followers. Her outreach consists of a vast network of people from local and national levels. 

Fox’s Instagram following has been accumulated through her brutal honesty about all aspects of her life, including balancing multiple careers as a woman, infertility issues, and everyday life struggles that are associated with being a mother of two. 

Among the many hats that Fox wears, is being a journalist one of them?

Unlike many Instagram influencer accounts that are crafted and heavily edited to be flawless, Fox’s page highlights the highs and lows of life that every human experiences. She aims to display her imperfections in hopes that others can relate and be brave enough to embrace theirs. Her comical, yet sincere viewpoint is one of the many reasons why her followers interact with her page.

She regularly posts Instagram reels, which are quick clips that inform her followers on life hacks, new products she loves, or how she puts on her Beautycounter makeup in simple steps. 

What makes Fox stand out among other influencers, though, is that she often brings experts onto her page to do live Instagram sessions, answering questions about infertility and national news from a legal perspective. 

For example, on Sept. 20, she hosted @willfolks, the founding editor of @fitsnews, on her Instagram live for a clarification of what is known about the trending Murdaugh murders in South Carolina. She’s also called attention to the ongoing Britney Spears conservatorship case and provided legal analysis.

During the age of social media, it is clear that the official definition of a “journalist” is too limited. But what about influencers like Fox? That depends on whether they are merely contributing to white noise in society, or are engaging in a robust discussion that leads to a more informed public. 

Fox’s Instagram page features her content that is reinforced by experts or well-established online sources that she provides via links. Her entire platform is based on the theme of candidness, so she does seek to tell the truth to her followers and be loyal to them in doing so. That all fits into the American Press Association definition of what can be classified as journalism.

Lauren Fox's picture

Lauren Ellison Fox poses for her Instagram account in her children’s boutique, Ellifox. [Credit: @laurenisafox on Instagram]

Fox admits on her page that she does not speak on an issue unless she is informed, or link a product without having liked it herself. This isn’t to say that she’s unbiased about products she reviews, clean beauty standards, and her experiences as a mother with infertility. However, Fox is presenting her personal experiences in order for her followers to make informed decisions. Her bias is useful, acting as a check on the subject matter at hand.

When it comes to legal and social issues, Fox does remain unbiased and relays both sides of the argument, often allowing the public to engage in thoughtful discussion through the live question and answer sessions she hosts.

So, can Fox add the title of a journalist to her resume? Yes. If someone is regularly participating in assembling and presenting the truth to society while abiding by journalistic principles, then they are a journalist, regardless of their official title. 

As for other Instagram influencers, or any person at all, it is important to decide if they, like Fox, are regular participants in presenting the truth to society.

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