Jitendra Sharma: Dawn of the Ted
Eastern Eye talks to the influencer to discuss his content creation journey and drive towards making a positive change
There are a lot of content creators online, but few have the uniqueness of Jitendra Sharma.
Popularly known as Ted the Stoner, he mixes up entertaining memes and laughter filled videos with making a positive difference with initiatives that have included getting over 30,000 stray animals adopted, crowdfunding for the less fortunate, climate crisis awareness and promoting blood donation drives.
With a strong social media presence, including over 1.6 million Instagram followers, he has won the admiration of big celebrities, along with his own fan base for combining entertainment with positive social change.
Eastern Eye caught up with the influencer to discuss his content creation journey and drive towards making a difference. He also revealed his inspirations, future hopes, and key tips for content creators.
What do you think first connected you to content creation?
Back in 2007-2008, everyone was consuming content. So, I also wanted to see how it felt like being on the other side and I think that’s how Ted The Stoner was born.
How did you get that curious name Ted The Stoner?
I have always used my page to put forward my opinions about many topics pertaining to social injustice, politics, or anything else important. I felt that what could be better than a stoned bear to do it. It was genuinely a random name and not much thought was put into it.
Did you ever imagine you would be so successful?
Success is a relative term, and most of us equate it to money, power, or fame. I think real success is changing some injustice happening in society or saving a life (or multiple lives). Or when you are simply making someone’s life better. If we are on the same page with my definition of success, then I guess yeah, I did.
What has been your most memorable moment so far?
There isn’t one, but many such memories I have. I feel because of this page, multiple lives have been saved, and more than 45,000 animals have been adopted. Each one has its own beautiful story. For me, that’s like 45,000 innocent souls still creating beautiful memories. This one time, we got a handicapped dog adopted after multiple attempts and now that cute soul is living his best life.
What is the secret of being a successful content creator?
Having a pure heart matters most along with content that entertains or educates people. In this industry, you deal with a lot of people, and they would probably love what you do. It’s equally important to give back the love and do something good with whatever resources you have.
What advice is there for aspiring content creators?
The best advice would be not to follow the crowd and create whatever you feel like. The easiest trick is to post your genuine thoughts without the intention of making people like you no matter what. If your content or opinions are relatable, people will eventually love you. If you try to be someone you are not, people will hate you at some point.
How important is it for you to use your platform to make a positive difference?
If you have a platform where you can use your influence to make a positive difference in someone’s life, I think it becomes your duty to do so. The more you do, the better will come your way.
Tell us more about other initiatives you have done?
I have done pretty much everything that was in my power to make a positive difference, ranging from animal adoptions to speaking against social injustice, getting corrupt politicians jailed, sparking a national movement against climate change, helping individual page followers against injustice, or finding blood donors. I’ve tried to do my best and looking back, I’m glad I did what had to be done.
What is your opinion of the negative side of social media?
Social media can be used for good, but it can also adversely impact your mind. You might get into the toxic cycle of comparison. Social media is full of people faking things and portraying themselves as someone they are not. Don’t ever believe what you see on social media, and you will be the happiest person around.
What are your future plans?
Currently, the short-term goal is to enter into the gaming, live streams and podcasts categories of the digital world. My long-term goal is to open my own animal shelter where I can take care of abandoned animals.
Who would you love to work with?
I would love to work with anybody who wishes to spread happiness in this world. Also, I definitely would love to work with someone who wants to do something in the animal welfare space, since that’s something really close to my heart.
If you could master something new, what would it be?
Starting my podcast has been on my mind for the longest time. So, some tips for getting in front of the camera would be something I’d be really happy to learn.
What inspires you?
The fact that the world is filled with so much bitterness yet there are so many good souls trying to do a better job and waking up believing in kindness. This inspires me the most. The little part called hope makes me believe that people can bring a change in the world if they want to. Only then you can be called an influencer.