April 27, 2017

Overview of Justin Bieber’s Image Repair
By: Sarah Pyo

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Abstract
• Justin Bieber has retained success amid his many scandals.
• His talents and attractive looks make a huge impact while trying to repair his image.
• Bieber’s first arrest in 2014 at age 19 negatively affected his image.
• After many image repair tactics, Bieber at 23, continues to flourish in the music industry and loved by his fans.

Introduction
• Justin Bieber rose to fame as a child star, turned teen heart-throb and is now a “bad boy” trying to repair his public image.
• Bieber has his first hit in the music industry in 2010. Following his success, he accumulated many scandals to his one, such as accusations of him being a teen father and racist.
• There is a lot of negative social media portrayal of Bieber, including footages of teen Bieber singing a racist parody, nude photos and mocking his disposition after a DUI.
• Despite all of his reckless behaviors, Bieber is still hitting No. 1 on the charts and advancing his career.

Literature Review
• The following studies were used: Ricky Gervais (Kauffman, 2012), Michael Phelps (Walsh, 2011), Terrell Owens (Brazeal, 2008)

Research Questions
• What were some of the tactics Justin Bieber used to repair his image?
• How did he use social media to repair his image?
• What were the responses to his tactics?
• Was Justin Bieber successful with his image repair tactics?

Methods
• We critically analyzed how the media has been portraying Bieber since his career and how he has responded to negative publicity.
• We noted Bieber’s fans responses to his image repair tactics.
• We examined Bieber’s social media presence and analyzed whether or not it has made an impact to worsen or improve his public image.

Findings/Discussion
• Bieber has utilized all of Benoit’s five image repair tactics in different circumstances.

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This table shows all the ways in which Bieber has utilized all five image repair tactics.

• He is generally very open about his wrongdoings and has admitted that he does come off as arrogant and conceited. He has also confessed that he hasn’t always done the wrong thing.
• Bieber showed mortification by uploading a video of himself apologizing to the public for his behavior. He was also featured on Ellen in a very mature and genuine way.
• Despite all of his scandals, Bieber’s career has been continuously successful. His case is very unique and unlike others mainly because negative media portrayal tends to become a detriment to a celebrity’s career.
• Bieber has been very supported by his fans and the number of his followers constantly increase.
• Apart from the scandals, Bieber has a lot of positive media attention. He has done a lot of good work in his past and continues to contribute to charities. For a celebrity his age, he has done a lot to give back and convey his good intentions.
• Age seems to play a big factor in the public’s acceptance of his image repair tactics. Bieber may have to work harder to gain public forgiveness if he keeps up the reckless behavior.

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This photo shows Justin Bieber involved in #GiveBackPhilippines, an online campaign he launched to help Yolanda survivors. Photo Credit: AndPop

Limitations
• Bieber has yet to be involved in a scandal that could completely ruin his career.
• Currently there are no studies on Bieber’s image repair tactics that are available.
• Finding relevant studies was difficult because of how unique Bieber’s case is.

Conclusion
• Justin Bieber utilized all five image repair tactics.
• His image repair tactics have been successful and his career continues to thrive in the music industry.
• Not only does the public accept his image repair tactics, but also encourage and support him. His Beliebers genuinely care and trust that he is a good person and has good intentions.

 

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