The rise of influencer culture has caused a dilemma for traditional bureaucratic structures such as banks, which still don’t know how to categorize jobs like streaming or content creation. Lou, a UK-based streamer under the handle 'Poopernoodle', found out the hard way when she described herself as an “adult online entertainer” on a bank application and was promptly rejected. The incident highlights the need for bureaucratic structures to adapt to the changing job landscape as more people move away from traditional employment and towards online work.
Banks and other traditional bureaucratic structures have yet to recognize influencer culture and its impact on the gaming industry as a legitimate occupation. This lack of understanding and recognition has tangible consequences, such as in Lou’s case, where she was denied access to basic banking services due to the terminology used to describe her job.
This issue is not unique to the gaming industry, and similar problems have been reported across various fields where non-traditional jobs are becoming increasingly popular. The gaming industry is particularly affected, however, as streaming and content creation have become a key part of the industry, with influencers playing a significant role in promoting and marketing games to their audiences.
To keep pace with this evolution, it is crucial to establish recognition and support for influencers and content creators. Doing so ensures that these individuals can access basic services, such as banking and healthcare, without discrimination. Unfortunately, due to a lack of understanding about these roles, those working in this field may not receive the same rights and benefits as traditional employees, including paid leave, sick pay, and pensions.
Efforts must be made to recognize and normalize non-traditional jobs in the gaming industry and beyond to avoid marginalizing those who work in this field. As Lou points out, for those with a non-traditional job who are filling out applications for these types of services, "when in doubt, go for 'self-employed,' or even better, 'an accountant'." However, the solution lies in creating a system that acknowledges and supports the diversity of work in the modern world, including online influencers and content creators.
This lack of understanding from the banking industry can also have implications for taxes and other financial matters for online influencers and content creators. For example, if a bank denies someone for being an “adult entertainer” but that person actually makes their income from streaming or creating content, it can complicate their ability to report their income and pay taxes correctly.
Furthermore, these issues can lead to significant issues for content creators in accessing financial services, such as bank accounts and loans. Providing accurate and clear options on applications and avoiding stigmatizing language will make it easier for content creators to access the financial services they need to succeed.
Ultimately, the games industry and the streaming community are only going to continue to expand, and those working in these fields need to be recognized and respected, just like any other professional. Financial institutions and other organizations need to keep up with the times and understand the nature of these industries if they want to remain relevant and be able to serve a diverse range of customers.
The situation faced by Poopernoodle is not an isolated incident. Many content creators in the gaming and streaming industries face similar challenges and discrimination because of the lack of understanding from financial institutions and other bureaucratic entities. It is important for these institutions to update their systems and language to reflect the changing job landscape and provide support to those working in these fields. Only then will the systems needed by all people in a modern world be open to content creators and others with similar non-traditional professions.
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