The Rock is the most popular actor on social media

Commentary: It's not enough these days to have millions of followers. The Hollywood Reporter's social media popularity chart judges actors on additional criteria.

Chris Matyszczyk
2 min read

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.

I'd always thought the apogee of being a modern acting star lay merely in the number of followers one has on social media.

Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson says he's seriously thinking about running for president in 2020

It must feel so good to be top of the social media world.

Miami Herald

I've suddenly discovered, however, that the Hollywood Reporter runs a constant analysis of which actor is the most popular on social media each week.

In company with analytics company MVPIndex, the Reporter stares intently at actors' Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube feeds -- as well as at something called Google Plus.

The boffins then examine "social engagement on the platforms, along with weekly additions of followers/subscribers."

This week, Dwayne Johnson, aka The Rock, aka star of a mediocre Apple ad, is the winner. 

But what propelled him to the pinnacle? The Reporter explains: "A throwback post leads Johnson's charge back to No. 1: a March 1 Instagram photo featuring him as the Incredible Hulk for Halloween, decrying his 'f*cked up haircut' in the picture."

Let that be a lesson for all aspiring actors, I assume. You have to charm your audience constantly with tales of your past, as well as glories of your present and future. Self-deprecation scores bonus points.

Which is odd, as I'm not sure self-deprecation works too well in Hollywood.

The 4 million likes this one Rock-y post achieved made the star ascend to the week's golden statuette status.

Who, though, might be the paper and scissors just behind him on the Hollywood Reporter's Top Actors chart? In second place was Jennifer Lopez, then Zendaya and Lupita Nyong'o. Kevin Hart and Dove Cameron were nipping at their heels.

In seventh place was "Wonder Woman" actor Gal Gadot. She, or perhaps her social media handlers, conjured something revolutionary to leap 18 places from the week before.

"Gadot posted pre-Academy Awards, where she was one of the presenters, on Facebook accompanying a video in which she was getting her makeup done, writing, "Good luck to all the nominees!" says the Reporter.

This apparently sent the metrics soaring. 

Please imagine how these stars' handlers now strategize weekly -- or, some might say, weakly -- to be seen and heard around the web.

They used to say you're only as good as your last performance. It seems that these days, you're only as good as your last tweet.

I fancy that, one day soon, the Oscars will have a specific category for "Best Social Media Performance of the Year."

Just imagine the gushing acceptance speech, as the winning star tries to read out the names of all their 38 million followers.

Technically Incorrect: Bringing you a fresh and irreverent take on tech. 

Tech Culture: From film and television to social media and games, here's your place for the lighter side of tech.