- Shane Dawson’s collaboration with Jeffree Star officially launched online and in stores Friday.
- Fans crashed the website within seconds and stood in line for hours to get their hands on the products, which have since completely sold out.
- Amid all the craze surrounding the launch, Dawson is also facing criticism from viewers who say he used the Tati Westbrook- James Charles drama for clickbait in the trailer since it has yet to be mentioned in the series.
Shane Dawson Beauty Launch
Shane Dawson and Jeffree Stars’ highly anticipated makeup and merchandise collaboration finally launched Friday and quickly took over the internet, meanwhile, fans are still wondering if YouTube beauty drama will be included in upcoming episodes of his series.
The YouTubers released two eyeshadow palettes, a collection of liquid lipsticks, a line of merchandise, and more. But fans had completely overwhelmed the website before the company behind it, Shopify, could even finish listing each item for sale.
Minutes after the scheduled launch time, Star tweeted that the site had crashed, adding “Shane’s in a ball crying on the floor.”
Issues persisted for hours, with many users complaining about the site crashing, error messages, missing confirmation emails, and other problems.
Those who chose to purchase the palette at their local Morphe stores also had to wait in huge lines to get their hands on any of the products.
As many people expected, the Conspiracy palette was completely sold out by the middle of the day, with the rest of the line selling out shortly after.
Although we don’t know the exact figures just yet, it seems the launch has already broken records according to Jeffree Star, who said the statistics will be released in the coming days.
Fans Accuse Shane of Clickbait
The build-up for the release was of course set up by each installment of Dawson’s docu-series, “The Beautiful World of Jeffree Star.” Of the six parts that have been released so far, the lowest viewed episode sits at over 14 million views, while all of the episodes combined make up over 110 million views.
Despite the success of the episodes so far, some fans are upset that Dawson has not included any footage from the infamous Tati Westbrook and James Charles drama.
As you might remember, massive beauty influencer James Charles lost nearly 3 million subscribers in May after his former mentor Tati Westbrook posted her infamous “Bye Sister” video, publicly announcing the end of their friendship. One stand out moment in the video involved her claim that Charles uses his celebrity status to sexually manipulate straight men.
Star and Dawson both publicly expressed their support for Westbrook during the whole ordeal, with Star even going so far as to call Charles a predator. After apologies and explanations from Charles, Star, and Westbrook, the drama eventually blew over and Charles’ subscriber count bounced back.
Fans were hoping to see more about Star and Dawson’s involvement and opinions on the situation in his series and it seemed like they were going to get exactly that. In his trailer for the docu-series, Dawson included footage of him reacting to Westbrook’s initial video and Charles’ subscriber loss.
As of now, the series has seemed to move in chronological order without any mention of the drama, which has left some fans feeling disappointed. Some have even accused Dawson of using the incident as clickbait for views.
Some suggested that Dawson excluded the drama out of respect for those involved, especially since Westbrook and Charles both recently released products last month. Others said it would be harmful to bring it all back up again after everyone has seemingly moved past it.
They probably took it out due to respect for Tati because she wants the drama to be over— dory (@SingingMUA) October 31, 2019
Also, James and Tati both had releases. Even if they are competition and even though they may not all be friends anymore Shane probably did not want to bring all that up and mess with everyone’s launches. There is still an unknown number of episodes left.— Tyler Hauser (@Smokes4harris) October 30, 2019
In a way I hope they don’t bring it back up. That was such an ugly time. I’m not interested in seeing it all over again. I’m loving the in depth look of the makeup world more. Far more interesting than past drama lol— Justin Glenn (@ImJustinGlenn) October 30, 2019
Fans also said it was likely a decision to focus on the business aspect of the beauty industry rather than the drama. They specifically pointed to a poll Dawson posted early on in the series asking viewers what they wanted to see more of, though viewers seem to be split on what the results actually were. Meanwhile, others pointed out that there are still more episodes set to come.
He did a poll on his Insta and asked if we wanted to see more drama or business and business won. Personally. I'm glad he didn't include all the drama in this because it would have cheapened the series. But to each their own.— Denisia Nelson (@DenisiaNelson) November 4, 2019
Aren’t we all. A week or two ago Shane even posted an Instagram poll asking if we want more drama or business. Drama was voted over 90%. So I’m trying to wait patiently but it will probably be episode 9 or not in the series at all.— Jillian (@fakingperfectly) October 29, 2019
Also, if you watched Shane's Instagram story right after part 2 was posted, you'd see that he did a poll, asking if people wanted more drama or more business in the series, and 57^% voted business, so they might not even post about it, and if they do, it may not be a whole part..— Kayla Tackett (@LassyLagoon1324) October 31, 2019
After the launch of part 1 Shane mention that he was surprised how interested everyone was in the business side of things so he’s kinda geared the episodes more towards that than towards the drama, but he also did an insta poll recently “drama or business” and drama won so— dev (@dsbales_) October 30, 2019
See what others are saying: (Business Insider) (PopBuzz)(Mashable)
TikTok and Twitter Are Now Deleting Videos That Expose Closeted Olympians on Grindr
On top of outing people who may not be ready to have their sexuality revealed to the world, these videos could have endangered LGBTQ+ athletes from countries where homosexuality is illegal.
Closeted Olympians Being Doxxed
Openly LGBTQ+ Olympians are currently more visible than they have ever been before, but unfortunately, so are closeted ones.
That’s because some people have been using the LGBTQ+ dating app Grindr to try and find Olympians. They’ve been doing so by using the app’s “Explore” feature, which allows people to search and see users in specific locations (ie. Olympic Village).
But some aren’t content with just discovering which athletes belong to the LGBTQ+ community. They’re also sharing that information on platforms like TikTok and Twitter.
“I used Grindr’s explore feature to find myself [an] Olympian boyfriend,” one TikTok user said in a post that had been viewed 140,000 times, according to Insider.
That video reportedly went on to show the poster scrolling through Grindr to expose over 30 users’ full faces.
As many have argued, not only does this potentially out already-stressed Olympians who may not yet be comfortable sharing their sexuality, it also could put some users at serious risk if they live in countries where being LGBTQ+ is illegal.
In fact, the video cited by Insider seemingly did just that, as it reportedly shows the face of a user who appears to be from a country “known for its anti-LGBTQ policies.”
Grindr Responds, TikTok and Twitter Take Action
In response, Grindr said the posts violate its rules against “publicly displaying, publishing, or otherwise distributing any content or information” from the app. It then asked the posters to remove the content.
Ultimately, it was TikTok and Twitter themselves that largely took action, with the two deleting at least 14 posts scattered across their platforms.
Twitter says it’s taking steps to remove the posts flagged by Insider showing Grindr’s explore page at the Olympic Village. TikTok has yet to give an on the record response. pic.twitter.com/r11pNL6Lwu— Benjamin Goggin (@BenjaminGoggin) July 28, 2021
A Highly-Visible LGBTQ+ Presence at the Games
According to Outsports, at least 172 of around 11,000 Olympians are openly LGBTQ+. While that number is still well below the statistical average, it’s triple the number of LGBTQ+ athletes that attended Rio’s 2016 Games.
In fact, if they were their own country, openly LGBTQ+ athletes would reportedly rank 11th in medals, according to an Outsports report published Tuesday.
Among those winners is British diver Tom Daley, who secured his first gold medal on Monday and used his platform to send a hopeful message to LGBTQ+ youth by telling them, “You are not alone.”
After winning a silver medal on Wednesday, U.S. swimmer Erica Sullivan talked about her experience as both a member of the LGBTQ+ community and a person of color.
Still, the Olympics has faced criticism for its exclusion of intersex individuals, particularly those like South African middle-distance runner Caster Semenya, who won gold medals in both 2012 and 2016. Rules implemented in 2019 now prevent Semenya from competing as a woman without the use of medication to suppress her testosterone levels.
Jake Paul Launches Anti-Bullying Charity
The charity, called Boxing Bullies, aims to use the sport to give kids confidence and courage.
Jake Paul Launches Boxing Bullies Foundation
YouTuber Jake Paul — best known as the platform’s boxer, wreckless partier, and general troublemaker — has seemingly launched a non-profit to combat bullying.
The charity is called Boxing Bullies. According to a mission statement posted on Instagram, it aims to “instill self confidence, leadership, and courage within the youth through the sport of boxing while using our platform, voice, and social media to fight back against bullying.”
If the notion of a Paul-founded anti-bullying charity called “Boxing Bullies” was not already begging to be compared to former First Lady Melania Trump’s “Best Best” initiative, maybe the group’s “Boxing Bullies Commandments” will help connect the dots. Those commandments use an acronym for the word “BOX” to spell out the charity’s golden rules.
“Be kind to everyone; Only defend, never initiate; X-out bullying.”
Paul Hopes To “Inspire” Kids To Stand Up For Themselves
Paul first said he was launching Boxing Bullies during a July 13 interview following a press conference for his upcoming fight against Tyron Woodley.
“I know who I am at the end of the day, which is a good person,” he told reporters. “I’m trying to change this sport, bring more eyeballs. I’m trying to support other fighters, increase fighter pay. I’m starting my charity, I’m launching that in 12 days here called Boxing Bullies and we’re helping to fight against cyberbullying.”
It has not been quite 12 days since the interview, so it’s likely that more information about the organization will be coming soon. Currently, the group has been the most active on Instagram, where it boasts a following of just around 1,200 followers. It has posted once to Twitter, where it has 32 followers; and has a TikTok account that has yet to publish any content. It also has a website, though there is not too much on it as of yet.
On its Instagram, one post introducing Paul as the founder claims the rowdy YouTuber started this charity because he has been on the receiving end of bullying.
“Having been a victim of bullying himself, Jake experienced firsthand the impact it has on a person’s life,” the post says. “Jake believes that this is a prevailing issue in society that isn’t talked about enough. Boxing gave Jake the confidence to not care about what others think and he wants to share the sport and the welfare it‘s had on him with as many kids as possible.”
It adds that he hopes his group can“inspire the next generation of kids to be leaders, be athletes, and to fight back against bullying.”
Paul Previously Accused of Being a Bully
While fighting against bullying is a noble cause, it is an ironic project for Paul to start, as he has faced no shortage of bullying accusations. While Paul previously sang about “stopping kids from getting bullied” in the lunchroom, some have alleged he himself was actually a classic high school bully who threw kids’ backpacks into garbage cans.
This behavior allegedly continued into his adulthood, as a New York Times report from earlier this year claimed he ran his Team 10 house with a culture of toxicity and bullying. Among other things, sources said he involved others in violent pranks, pressured people into doing dangerous stunts, and destroyed peoples’ personal property to make content.
See what others are saying: (Dexerto)
Director Defends Recreating Anthony Bourdain’s Voice With AI in New Documentary
The film’s director claims he received permission from Bourdain’s estate and literary agent, but on Thursday, Bourdain’s widow publicly denied ever giving that permission.
Bourdain’s Voice Recreated
“You are successful, and I am successful, and I’m wondering: Are you happy?” Anthony Bourdain says in a voiceover featured in “Roadrunnner,” a newly released documentary about the late chef — except Bourdain never actually said those words aloud.
Instead, it’s one of three lines in the film, which features frequent voiceovers from Bourdain, that were created through the use of artificial intelligence technology.
That said, the words are Bourdain’s own. In fact, they come from an email Bourdain reportedly wrote to a friend prior to his 2018 suicide. Nonetheless, many have now questioned whether recreating Bourdain’s voice was ethical, especially since documentaries are meant to reflect reality.
Director Defends Use of AI Voice
The film’s director, Academy Award winner Morgan Neville, has defended his use of the synthetic voice, telling Variety that he received permission from Bourdain’s estate and literary agent before inserting the lines into the film.
“There were a few sentences that Tony wrote that he never spoke aloud,” Neville said. “It was a modern storytelling technique that I used in a few places where I thought it was important to make Tony’s words come alive.”
Bourdain’s widow — Ottavia Bourdain, who is the executor of his estate — later denied Neville’s claim on Twitter, saying, “I certainly was NOT the one who said Tony would have been cool with that.”
In another interview with GQ, Neville described the process, saying the film’s creators “fed more than ten hours of Tony’s voice into an AI model.”
“The bigger the quantity, the better the result,” he added. “We worked with four companies before settling on the best.”
“If you watch the film,” Neville told The New Yorker, “you probably don’t know what the other lines are that were spoken by the AI, and you’re not going to know. We can have a documentary-ethics panel about it later.”
The Ethics Debate Isn’t Being Tabled
But many want to have that discussion now.
Boston-based film critic Sean Burns, who gave the film a rare negative review, later criticized it again for its unannounced use of AI, saying he wasn’t aware that Bourdain’s voice had been recreated until after he watched the documentary.
Meanwhile, The New Yorker’s Helen Rosner wrote that the “seamlessness of the effect is eerie.”
“If it had been a human voice double I think the reaction would be “huh, ok,” but there’s something truly unsettling about the idea of it coming from a computer,” Rosner later tweeted.
Online, many others have criticized the film’s use of AI, with some labeling it as a “deepfake.”
Others have offered more mixed criticism, saying that while the documentary highlights the need for posthumous AI use to be disclosed, it should not be ruled out altogether.
“In a world where the living could consent to using AI to reproduce their voices posthumously, and where people were made aware that such a technology was being used, up front and in advance, one could envision that this kind of application might serve useful documentary purposes,” David Leslie, ethics lead at the Alan Turing Institute, told the BBC.
Celebrities Recreated After Death
The posthumous use of celebrity likeness in media is not a new debate. In 2012, a hologram of Tupac took the stage 15 years after his death. In 2014, the Billboard Music Awards brought a hologram of Michael Jackson onstage five years after his death. Meanwhile, the Star Wars franchise digitally recreated actor Peter Cushing in 2016’s “Rogue One,” and unused footage of actress Carrie Fisher was later translated into “The Rise of Skywalker,” though a digital version of Fisher was never used.
In recent years, it has become almost standard for filmmakers to say that they will not create digital versions of characters whose actors die unexpectedly. For example, several months after Chadwick Boseman’s death last year, “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” executive producer Victoria Alonso confirmed Boseman would not be digitally recreated for his iconic role as King T’Challa.