It’s 2019, and you would think we would have made so much progress by now, but instead, it’s the era where shameless idiots reign supreme. Donald Trump is president, and I honestly do not even know where to begin with listing off all the stupid sh*t he believes. People are legit buying their way into the most prestigious colleges, even though their vapid, apathetic kids have no business being there. And last, but not least, we have social media influencers. Being a social media personality is the easiest job of all time, and they’re totally taking over all facets of media. They even have a reality show for becoming an influencer—it’s called The Bachelor! There are literally no prerequisites for the job—you don’t even have to be charismatic or attractive. All you need are apps to make you pretty, a robot army of followers, and the incessant yearning for attention. And yet these influencers continue to f*ck up their jobs time and time again. Let’s take a look at the some of the biggest influencer scandals and f*ck-ups that have played out on the ‘Gram. Let’s also pray that John Mayer never makes this list because he’s the only reason to keep our social media active anymore.
So apparently there are people out there who will spend their time and money to attend conventions to meet influencers and YouTubers. I mean, I’m someone who has been entertained by the weirdest corners of the internet, from crazy comments in the PornHub comment section to photoshopped images of Guy Fieri as a Renaissance baby, and even I don’t get the appeal of YouTubers. In any case, Bella Thorne’s ex-girlfriend was supposed to show face at TanaCon, which was an actual convention named after her that people willingly bought tickets to.
Long story short, TanaCon was a sh*t show. Her fans waited outside in the heat for hours without water, shade, or food, and Tana blamed other people for not being able to pull off the convention. First off, Postmates will deliver to literally anywhere, guys, so starvation and dehydration were totally avoidable. Just saying. Maybe it’s because the amount of antidepressants I’m prescribed have numbed me from feeling anything anymore, or maybe it’s because I have two brain cells to rub together, but I don’t have much sympathy for someone who waited on line for a female Jake Paul. And second off, I’m still not convinced being a YouTuber is a job, so are we really shocked that Tana couldn’t pull off doing something that was actually—wait for it—an important responsibility? I’m sorry, but what would these people have done at TanaCon to begin with? How is this interesting? Am I too old to understand this sh*t? Do I need to start getting preventative Botox?
Essena O’Neill was a tiny (duh) blonde (duh) vegan (duh) Australian (duh) who got hundreds of thousands of followers for being tiny, blonde, vegan, and Australian. She perfected the science of carefully crafted smoothie bowls that were more detailed than the ceiling of the Sistine chapel, she mastered FaceTune, and she made fake laughing an art form. Then she shocked everyone when she decided to get super preachy and write in her captions about how f*cking fake her Instagram is. I know sh*tting on vegans is as played out of a joke as Nickleback being terrible or girls always going to the bathroom together, but leave it to a vegan to preach. However, I do appreciate these captions and they’re way better than ones pretending to be “profound.” Like, the Buddha did not sit under a tree for 40 days for you to use his quotes as a caption for a picture of you sticking out your nonexistent ass. So while this isn’t a scandal in the same realm as TanaCon or some of the others on this list, within the influencer world, it was a BFG to have such a big influencer come out and admit everything is bullsh*t. In any case, it was refreshing to see authenticity in an otherwise totally fake space. Essena wasn’t telling us anything we don’t already know, but it was still nice to hear her own up to her sh*t.
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NOT REAL LIFE – took over 100 in similar poses trying to make my stomach look good. Would have hardly eaten that day. Would have yelled at my little sister to keep taking them until I was somewhat proud of this. Yep so totally #goals #gamechangers #socialmediaisnotreal #socialmedia #bethechange #movement #essenaoneill
Fake Sponsored Content
For my job, I’ve gotten pretty good at observing social media patterns enough to know who has fake followers and fake body parts. I would say all influencers are full of sh*t, but we know that’s not the case because that FitTea runs riiiight through ’em. But they do do (sorry) very phony things. I even once saw an internet personality create a fake Wikipedia page for herself, post it to her social media, and pretend like a fan did it for her when it was clearly her that did it. LOL nice try, but just like the knock-off designer clothes you’re selling me, I ain’t buying it. But there’s one crazy strategy that even I didn’t notice: fake sponsored content. These people will legit post pictures of items they bought, pretend they were sent them for free, and frame their posts as ads. Every day we stray further from God’s light. I’m not going to lie, having fake sponsors would trick even me into thinking that an influencer is somewhat legit, as long as it’s not a shady protein shake or fit tea. Honestly, I’m not even mad about this one—I’m impressed. These people really take the “fake it til you make it” mantra pretty seriously, huh?
this girl I know really had a sponcon themed bday party. wow what an example of fake it til u make it.
— Jessica Jacolbe (@jessjoycej) April 30, 2018
Alexis Ren vs. Jay Alvarrez
Alexis Ren and Jay Alvarrez captured America’s hearts because they’re extremely attractive and Jay Alvarrez’s helicopter acted as a luxury bang bus to tour the entire world. They shocked our nation when they broke up, because we all thought that the foundation of every healthy relationship is being really, really ridiculously good-looking. Alexis and Jay kept their breakup pretty private at first by simply deleting all the evidence of their relationship on their Instagrams (as you do). BTW, that was like, 80% of their Instagram grids. But then, like most breakups, it got ugly.
Jay would later take not-so-subtle shots at Alexis, saying all she cared about is fame, looks, and materialism, even though he probably has more words for “private jet” than Lala Kent does. Alexis finally (and very publicly) went through the stages of a breakup: changing her hair color, getting tiny tattoos that “mean something” (a gun tattoo on your finger is something you will inevitably regret, Lex), and going on a Twitter tirade that ended with her saying Jay has a small d*ck. Why oh why is it the go-to insult for girls to say a guy has a small d*ck? Size. Doesn’t. Matter. A worse way to insult a guy’s manhood is to insult his technique—not size. I digress (slightly). Alexis later alluded to the fact that he was actually a really unhealthy person to be in a relationship with and was rather emotionally abusive, specifically when it came to her weight. So snaps for Alexis for overcoming a POS guy that everyone else dubbed the “dream boyfriend.”
Jack Wagner’s Wall Experiment
Jack Wagner is like a raccoon that digs around the bottomless pit of trash that is the internet to create incredible content. Between his one-sided bromance with Dan Bilzerian to his recent excavation of Meghan McCain’s painfully awkward tweets, he is the ultimate follow on social media. So Jack Wagner created the best social experiment since Timmy Thicc (which is another subject worth the deep dive): he created an Instagrammable mural that was only available to pose in front of if you have 20,000 followers on social media. He even went as far as hiring a security guard who told a father and his young daughter that they couldn’t snap a pic because they just barely missed 20k followers. Even legit famous actors fell for this prank and showed face to take fake candids. Talk about try-hard. It’s not even a cool mural. It looks like a doodle drawn by some chick that listens to Iggy Azaelea and shoplifts from Forever 21. Wagner alluded that the wall was meant to be a prank/piece of performance art, but people took it seriously, so… was it really?
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very exciting day today folks. to celebrate the upcoming release of my new show @likeandsubscribe we created a beautiful instagramable mural designed specifically for influencers. influencers work so hard every day to curate beautiful feeds and inspire us all, we wanted to make something specifically for them. most of the best murals in LA are already posted too often, which is why this mural is for verified influencers only (or people with over 20k followers). We even hired an armed security team to guard the mural this week to make sure only verified influencers are able to take photos with the mural. this is something i thought influencers would appreciate but unfortunately a lot of them got very mad at this and only had bad things to say. we wanted this mural to capture the themes of positive vibes and love, apparently some people dont have enough of that in their lives. this mural is not about excluding anyone. we put alot of work into making this mural great and we just wanted to showcase it in the most curated way possible. great painters pick the best possible canvas for their masterpieces, we are doing the exact same thing but with accounts. if banksy were alive today i feel like he would do the exact same thing.
Images: Simon Hajducki / Unsplash; versace_tamagotchi, alexisandjay_goals, essena.oneill / Instagram; jessjoycej / Twitter; Giphy
Maybe 2019 won’t be a terrible year after all, because this Fyre Festival content just keeps on coming. In the battle of the two dueling Fyre documentaries, one of the most interesting aspects was the role of Fuck Jerry, and who was truly responsible for the fiasco. In the Hulu documentary, one of the main interview subjects was Oren Aks, who worked for Jerry Media to help market the festival. Oren no longer works there, and the movie ended with him giving Jerry Media the middle finger, in case you were wondering where that professional relationship ended up.
Well, it doesn’t look like Oren and Fuck Jerry will be patching things up any time soon, because Oren is stirring up some serious sh*t on social media. He apparently still has the password to the official Fyre Festival Instagram account, which seems like a major oversight, and he relaunched the Fyre Festival IG account over the weekend. That’s right, Fyre is back in business.
In the bio for the account, which is still verified, it says that Oren is running the account, and that it’s not affiliated with Hulu, Netflix, or Fyre Media. I’m no lawyer, but I feel like as far as legal protections go, this is about as ironclad as posting one of those “I do not consent to Facebook sharing my data to third parties” statuses. I mean, he’s still using their name, handle, and logo, but whatever. And if you had any doubt about whether Oren was truly the one behind this, he’s posted about it on his own Instagram Story, and he’s also the only account that Fyre Festival follows.
So now that Oren has brought back the Fyre Instagram, what does he intend to do with it? His ultimate motives are still unclear, but I have a feeling that it’s not something Billy McFarland would approve of (unless it’s a scam). The biggest clue we’ve gotten so far is an IG Story of the comment keyword filters on the account being deleted. If you forgot about these, this was their way of hiding criticism in the weeks leading up to the festival, when it should have been clear to attendees that it was going to be a sh*t show. If comments contained words such as “fake,” “scam,” or “festival,” they were immediately hidden. So, when concerned ticket holders tried to ask questions on the Fyre Festival Instagram about things like how their plane tickets were getting to them or just generally what the deal was, those comments would automatically get deleted and they would get a swift block. Same thing would happen to anyone who tried to warn festivalgoers that the so-called “one-in-a-lifetime experience” may not have been what it seemed. I mean, you know things are bad when a literal music festival is afraid of the word “festival” being used against them.
Now it looks like you’ll be able to comment whatever you want on any of the Fyre Festival posts, so if you’ll excuse me, I have to cancel all my plans for the rest of the week. For now it just looks like people making Fyre Festival jokes, so I hope something big breaks soon.
No matter what ends up happening with this, I’m happy to see that Oren, like me, is a messy bitch who lives for drama. I’m also glad that the Fyre brand isn’t truly dead, because nothing else has brought me more joy in the last month. If I were to Marie Kondo my entire life, I’d be left with approximately two shirts and five hundred Fyre documentaries. With this news and rumors of Evian enthusiast Andy King getting his own show, there’s lots more to look forward to, so stay tuned.
Images: @fyrefestival / Instagram (3)