Nepo’s kids are all the internet can talk about. Here’s why.

This week New York Magazine announced 2022 “year nepo baby” and published deep dive into taxonomy famous descendants.

For those uninitiated, a “nepo baby” (short for “nepotism baby”) is the child of a celebrity—or anyone with power and influence in their field—who uses their parents’ influence to get ahead in his career. Some archetypal examples are Lily-Rose Depp, daughter of Johnny Depp and Vanessa Paradis, and Maya Hawke, daughter of Ethan Hawke and Uma Thurman.

To clarify the concept, New York Magazine categorized by non-babies into several levels. The highest are the “classic no-starts” who inherit famous family names like Depp and Hawke. Then there are the “industry kids,” or children of people who work behind the scenes in the entertainment industry, who could also benefit from their parents’ connections. One example is Phoebe Bridgers, whose father is a set builder. The children of billionaires such as Paris Hilton must not be forgotten either.

New York Magazine traces the origin of the word “nepo baby” to a tweet posted in February by a Canadian tech support worker named Meriem Derradji. She tweeted: “Wait I just found out the actress who plays Lexi is nepotism baby omg 😭 her mom is Leslie Mann and her dad is a movie director lol.” With this tweet, the lexicon of the internet changed forever.

Every time a new nepotistic baby is revealed to the public, whether it’s Maude Apatow Euphoria or Hawke in Stranger ThingsThe internet erupts in outrage and self-doubt over who gets opportunities in the entertainment industry. But like Buzzfeed’s Izzy Ampil points out that the conversation surrounding the entertainment of baby nepotism is often a superficial “pop class analysis” of a problem that permeates every industry that too often begins and ends with celebrities. Some readers insisted New York Magazine analyze the reproduction of privilege in other sectors, e.g journalism, banking and politics.

New York MagazineExploring non-beginnings brought the concept back to the forefront of the Twitter hive mind, leading to almost everyone getting on board. But at least the memes were fun.

As is common when something reaches the Internet masses, the non-babes quickly democratized, with users sharing their definitions of non-babes and discussing inequality in their respective industries. For example, one Twitter user wrote“My only contribution to the non-baby discourse in academia is this: I’m the first and only person in my family to have a doctorate. I was legitimately surprised when I started this job and found out how rare it was.”

Shortly after New York Magazine When the article was published, Twitter and TikTok users began satirizing the extremely specific and frankly silly categorizations of non-babies by sharing the advantages and traits they inherited from their own families. A meme is a clever way of forcing us to examine our own privileges or disadvantages. TikToker @literalwhore wrote: “I’m not a kid at a mid-sized lake in Warsaw, Missouri (my dad sets the fishing limit and we don’t have to pay for parking.”

Twitter user @literELLY wrote: “I hope no one ever finds out I’m a non-child (inherited mental illness from not only one but both of my parents).”

We can use nepo babies as a springboard to further explore the implications of generational wealth and privilege across all domains! Until then, the internet will do what it does best.

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