Connect with us

Entertainment

Tyler Oakley Calls Out Influencers for Partying During Pandemic

Published

on

  • Dozens of influencers attended a party at the Hype House in Los Angeles on Tuesday, including James Charles, Tana Mongeau, Nikita Dragun, Charli and Dixie D’Amelio, Emma Chamberlain, and others. 
  • YouTuber Tyler Oakley called out some of the creators on Twitter, asking them to instead use their platforms to encourage responsibility during the coronavirus pandemic. 
  • Jake Paul faced similar criticism from the Mayor of Calabasas this month after he threw a massive party where guests crowded together without masks and even swung from a raised excavator crane.
  • Many fear that these creators are sending a bad message to their young followers and warn that this behavior has serious consequences, especially as cases across the country rise. 

Hype House Party 

Dozens of social media influencers are under fire for partying in Los Angeles on Tuesday amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic  

The gathering causing all the outrage was thrown in celebration of Hype House member Larray Merritt’s 22nd birthday. The festivities reportedly began with a dinner at BOA Steakhouse and later evolved into a night of partying at the Hype House’s new mansion in Hollywood Hills.

Based on several posts to social media, the party was packed with tons of maskless– or poorly masked- YouTubers and TikTokers. Guests in attendance included James Charles, Tana Mongeau, Nikita Dragun, Charli and Dixie D’Amelio, Emma Chamberlain, and others. 

In fact, in an interview with The Holywood Fix, Hype House cofounder Thomas Petrou estimated that there were about 60-70 people inside the house. Keep in mind that groups of others were constantly being turned away outside the door. 

Outrage and Call Out From Tyler Oakley 

After seeing all of these influencers ignoring social distancing guidelines and mask policies, many took to social media to call them out.

One of the most notable was YouTuber Tyler Oakley. He initially tweeted, “if your favorite influencers are at huge house parties during a pandemic (& are dumb enough to post it on social media)… they are bad influences. unfollow them.”

A short time later, he decided to tag some especially large influencers, writing that they and “any others who have been partying in large groups” should “consider social distancing, mask wearing, & using your huge platforms to encourage responsibility during a worldwide pandemic.”

As of now it appears that only Merri has responded, saying, “ i understand 100% where ur coming from & it was a dumb thing to do. I will do better & will actually take this shit seriously. appreciate you tyler much love.”

Still, reactions to that have been mixed, with a lot of people pointing to a tweet from March that’s still on his page. That tweet reads, “the fact that there is a virus going around and some of y’all really going out risking ur health to go to a party with people you don’t even like is so stupid but shit I’m bored send me the addy next time.“

Aside from Merrit specifically, people are generally unhappy with what seems to be a widespread disregard for such a serious, fast-spreading, and in many cases deadly virus. In the past two weeks alone, the U.S. recorded more than 915,000 new cases of COVID-19. That’s more than what was reported across the country for the whole month of June and on top of that, the U.S. just surpassed 4 million total cases.

California has received even more attention after surpassing New York as the state with the most confirmed coronavirus cases on Tuesday.

Mayor Responds to Jake Paul Party  

These are by no means the first influencers to face backlash for ignoring coronavirus safety measures. Frustrations have already been building against influencers linking up for collaborations and TikTok posts. 

@jasonderulo

Try this with your squad @brentrivera @benazelart @lexibrookerivera @mason_fulp @jeremyhutchins @pierson

♬ Coño – Jason Derulo & Puri & Jhorrmountain

Earlier this month, Jake Paul face similar criticism for throwing a massive party at his Calabasas mansion. 

Clips of that party show guests crowded together playing games and even hanging from a raized excavator crane. At one point someone pulls a car into the packed lobby of his home. 

After seeing videos of the gathering, Calabasas Mayor Alicia Weintraub said she started receiving a flood of phone calls from outrage constituents.

“They’re having this large party, no social distancing, no masks, it’s just a big huge disregard for everything that everybody is trying to do to get things back to functioning,” she told Fox 11. 

But apparently it wasn’t just Paul, the mayor said she also learned of a recent baby shower that brought in over 200 guests, as well a wedding reception that had a big crowd as well. As a result, Weintraub issued a press release Friday announcing a city council approved order. That order says those not wearing a mask in public may be fined $100 for the first offense. She specifically referenced the lack of proper coverings she’s seen as well as parties, even naming Paul specifically.

Now, she says there will be no more warnings. Instead, local sheriffs are ordered to immediately break up large gatherings. 

Weintraub told the LA Times she was worried about young people would follow pauls lead in ignoring health guidelines. “I’m hoping he will turn it around, issue an apology, and start promoting wearing a mask.”

She also wasn’t the only one concerned about the example he was setting. As news of that party went viral, Oakly calling him out. However, that time he simply wrote, “f*ck you, @jakepaul.”

Paul didn’t seem phased and even retweeted Oakley’s post.

@tyleroakley

Experts Warn of Risks

While it’s not just influencers specifically who are hosting large get-togethers, the general sentiment online is that they could be sending the message that doing so is okay, and the consequences of spreading this virus are massive. 

Dr. Anne Rimoin, an epidemiologist who specializes in infectious disease told Mashable, “People who are in prominent positions in the media and in particular, these influencers, have exactly that: influence.”

“And they could be doing their part to help stop the spread of this virus. What we know right now is that masks and social distancing work. We cannot rely on any other kind of magic bullet. This virus doesn’t care whether or not you believe in it, this virus is going to spread.”

“Everybody needs to take responsibility…Our economy depends on it, our ability to get back to school depends on it, our ability to get back to normal depends on it. So everybody needs to be doing their part. There’s no excuse.”

In an interview with WedMD last week, the nation’s top infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci warned people who might think they’re not vulnerable, that this type of thinking is not correct. He did not blame young people for the rise in cases, but he emphasized the importance of reaching them and said, “By allowing yourself to get infected or not caring if you do get infected, you are propagating a pandemic.”

“It doesn’t end with you,” he continued. “The chances are you’re going to infect someone else, who will then infect someone else, and then someone who’s vulnerable…will get infected.”

“That could be [somebody’s] father, mother, or grandmother. It could be a sick child who’s immunodeficient.”

“Then, all of a sudden you’re not operating in a vacuum. You’re part of the problem as opposed to being part of the solution.” 

See what others are saying: (Mashable) (Insider) (Cosmopolitan) 

Entertainment

The Try Guys Address Removal of Ned Fulmer: “We Had No Idea This Was Going On”

Published

on

The group said that by severing ties with Fulmer, it felt like they were losing a friend. 


“That Is Not What We Stand For”

Digital comedy and sketch group The Try Guys posted a video on Monday night explaining the recent removal of member Ned Fulmer. 

Last week, the Internet was filled with speculation that Fulmer, who is married with children, was having an affair with a staffer for The Try Guys. Fulmer confirmed the reports, claiming he had a “consensual workplace relationship.” The Try Guys quickly announced that Fulmer would no longer be working with the group as the result of an internal review. 

In Monday’s video, the remaining three members, Eugene Lee Yang, Zach Kornfeld, and Keith Habersberger, explained what led to their decision to remove Fulmer. While the trio noted there were legal issues that prevented them from sharing certain details, they wanted to be as transparent as possible. 

“On Labor Day weekend, multiple fans alerted us that they had seen Ned and an employee engaging in public romantic behavior,” Habersberger explained. “We reached out to check on that employee and Ned confirmed the reports, and since confirmed that this had been going on for some time, which was obviously very shocking to us.”

He emphasized that the rest of the group “had no idea this was going on.” 

After this, The Try Guys reached out to a variety of lawyers and HR professionals to make sure they handled the situation correctly. 

“This is something we took very seriously,” Yang said. “We refused to sweep things under the rug. That is not who we are, and that is not what we stand for.” 

Removing Fulmer From Content

They decided to immediately remove Fulmer from work activities and hired an HR rep to conduct a review. Fulmer was also withdrawn from releases pending the results of that review. 

As part of this, his video section was erased, he was digitally taken out of some content, and he was not included in merch drops. The Try Guys said this was a long and tedious process. 

“Honestly, I want to give major props to our editing staff for how deftly they handled that,” Kornfeld said. “There are several videos that we have deemed as fully unreleasable, you will never see them, and that is due to his involvement. And that is a decision that has cost us lots of money.” 

“We will not be able to recoup that money,” he continued. “But it’s a decision we stand by proudly.” 

The group declined to share details of the review but claimed it found that Fulmer engaged in “conduct unbecoming” of the team. Because of this, Yang, Kornfeld, and Habersberger gave written consent on Sept. 16 to ax Fulmer as a manager and employee of The Try Guys company. 

The three said they were always planning to make a public statement about their decision, but were initially waiting out of respect to the families and employees involved. As online speculation arose, they chose to deal with it sooner. 

“We’re losing a friend, we’re losing someone we built a company with, we have countless memories with, we just made a TV show together,” Kornfeld said. “I’m sure many of you feel the same way.” 

According to the group, some upcoming videos featuring Fulmer will be edited to remove him. They said they are currently taking time to reimagine their channel. 

See what others are saying: (USA Today) (People) (Deadline)

Continue Reading

Entertainment

Bruce Willis Denies Rumors He Sold His Likeness For Deepfake Use

Published

on

Deepfakes face criticism from Hollywood to social media.


Willis Debunks Rumors

Actor Bruce Willis denied rumors over the weekend that he sold his likeness to the deepfake company DeepCake. 

Willis agreed last year for his face to be used in a commercial for a Russian telecoms company. For this commercial, DeepCake digitally edited Willis’ face onto a Russian actor. This sparked rumors that Willis had sold the rights to his likeness for the company to use in future projects. 

However, both management for Willis and DeepCake itself denied any partnership or agreement for these rights.

“Bruce couldn’t sell anyone any rights, they are his by default,” DeepCake said.

Agreements for the AI generation of actors have been heard of before, however. Recently, actor James Earl Jones agreed for his voice to be technologically generated for the voice of Darth Vader in the Star Wars franchise. 

Deepfakes Online

This comes as deepfakes are facing mounting criticism online, including from prominent YouTube personality and author, Hank Green. He recently tweeted about a channel that uses similar deepfake technology and AI-voice generation to parody popular YouTube creators. He stressed his concern that while the channel in question may not be nefarious, this technology could end up being harmful. 

“There are ways to do this that would be much worse, more mean spirited, and more exploitative than this,” Green said. “And I’m very worried about what that will look like, because if this is working (and allowed), people will do it.”

Among other issues, Green mentioned these videos could abuse monetization and sponsorship opportunities while exploiting someone else’s face and brand. Green even implored YouTube to evaluate its terms of service as the popularity of deepfakes rise. 

See what others are saying: (BBC) (Mashable) (The Telegraph)

Continue Reading

Entertainment

Twitch Faces Backlash After Booking Megan Thee Stallion At TwitchCon Amid Creator Pay Cuts

Published

on

The cut in revenue share has ignited severe backlash on Twitch, where users argue pay for creators should be increased, not slashed. 


Revenue Share Shake Up

Twitch users are criticizing the company for hiring artist Megan Thee Stallion to perform at TwitchCon just one week after announcing cutbacks to top creator pay.

Last week, the video and streaming platform said that starting in June of next year, some creators will receive less revenue from their subscriptions. While the standard split for subscription revenue is 50/50, some major streamers previously received a more favorable 70/30 share in premium agreement terms. 

Many creators have long argued that everyone should get that 70/30 share, but Twitch took a step in the opposite direction. In the future, streamers with premium terms will only get the 70/30 slice for their first $100,000 from subscription revenue. After that, they will get bumped down to the regular 50/50 cut. 

The company argued the move was necessary as the premium terms previously lacked transparency and consistency, insisting it tried to modify the policy in a way that impacted the least amount of creators. According to Twitch’s statement, 90% of streamers on standard agreements will not even be impacted by the change.

Still, this move outraged Twitch users who were furious the company was not investing more in the creators that bring so many viewers to its platform. Those frustrations were exacerbated on Wednesday when the company announced Megan Thee Stallion would make an appearance at TwitchCon, a weekend-long event set to take place in San Diego in early October. 

Backlash Continues to Mount

While no details of Megan Thee Stallion’s agreement to perform have been disclosed, one can assume she charges a pretty penny to book at an event of this nature. Critics argued that if Twitch is willing to spend money on her, it should be willing to spend it on its own streamers. 

“So Twitch can’t afford to pay their creators 70/30, can’t fix their media player that crashes after each ad, can’t enforce their policies so people aren’t doing inappropriate things on stream, but they can afford paying celebrities to promote their streaming site?” one person wrote. 

“It’s weird that a company that just announced a bunch of budget cuts due to infrastructure costs goes out and grabs an A-list musician instead of promoting their own musicians that run on their platform,” another person claimed.

“Instead of giving your creators a cut they deserve when they do so much work, this is what you do…?” one user asked. “Maybe give your creators a better deal instead of wasting their hard earned money on things we don’t even want.”

Twitch has not responded to the outrage, but Megan Thee Stallion was not the only music act the Amazon-owned service booked for the event. Kim Petras and Meet Me at the Altar will also take the stage at TwitchCon. 

The backlash comes as concerns have been mounting against Twitch for a plethora of reasons including creator pay, gambling streams, and more. 

In recent months, some of the platform’s biggest names have left Twitch in favor of rival services like YouTube Gaming. 

See what others are saying: (Dexerto) (The Verge) (Metro)

Continue Reading