Last Sunday, Justin Bieber landed in Melbourne. And the response to his fans’ wild welcome was tired.
Bieber, who rose to fame in 2007 through YouTube has had more than his fair share of the spotlight. With over 67 million followers on Twitter and concerts selling out within minutes, the megastar has effectively lived in the glaring lights of a camera for the past seven years.
In the past, he’s welcomed the uncontrollable clamouring of his fans. Bieber isn’t shy of replying to tweets that express unconditional love, and would often tweet his affection for the “Beliebers”.
In 2014, when the fervour of his fans was at an all-time high, Bieber responded to the involvement of the police by tweeting, “dear cops. my beliebers wont hurt me. all is ok [sic]”
YOU ARE ALL WORTHY NO MATTER WHAT ANYONE SAYS >> BE STRONG GOD IS WITH US ALL> MY BELIEBERS CHANGED MY LIFE> I WILL FOREVER BE GRATEFUL
— Justin Bieber (@justinbieber) January 24, 2014
However, almost two years have passed since Bieber so valiantly defended his groupies. And it appears that the 21-year-old has moved past the seasonal hype that was brought on with his fame.
After his overwhelming reception at Melbourne airport on Sunday, Bieber took to Snapchat, posting multiple videos conveying his feelings.
“If I’m walking somewhere or arriving somewhere and you guys are asking me to take a photo… If I don’t respond, if I continue to keep walking, the likelihood is that I probably don’t want to take a photo at that moment.”
Bieber continued to express his unimpressed opinion, stating that he wanted to enjoy the moment with his fans, but could not if he did not feel respected.
“…Please just respect me,” Bieber asked, “and just treat me the way you want to be treated.”
Today The Newsroom’s Greta Levy took the racing pulse of some of the teens – many with supportive mums in attendance – who were queing for a glimpse of their idol.
On Monday morning three teens snuck into the Sydney hotel Bieber was staying at. When they found him, they used their short time in the same room to film the experience on Snapchat.
One of the girls was Madison Brown, 17, from Western Sydney. “He asked us how we were doing, and smiled,” she told The Newsroom, saying Bieber appeared neither excited nor bored at the encounter. “The security guys wouldn’t let us out [of the elevator]… after about 10 minutes, [Bieber] skated out of the hotel and all of the girls and press chased him up the street.”
Despite Bieber’s apparent nonchalance, his general attitude towards the public still stands at a courteous level. “Loving Australia,” he tweeted on Sunday. “I’ve missed this place. Thanks for the welcome.”
That’s cool, Justin. We’re pleased to have you grace our shores. – Bonnie Collis with video coverage from Greta Levy
Top photo – Justin Bieber on his 2011 tour, from Adam Sundana’s Flickr photostream.