- Melissa Lingafelt, a singer who now goes by Jimi Ono, posted a TikTok claiming that she was physically and verbally abused by her former boyfriend, actor Drake Bell, who she dated between 2006 and 2009. She was 16 when they began dating and he was 20.
- After her post went viral, others sent her messages accusing Bell of having sex with minors and claiming to have known about her abuse. One person said Bell raped her when she was in 8th grade.
- Two women who had serious relationships with him also sent her words of support and claimed they experience similar abuse.
- Bell denied Ono’s allegations, adding that he is reviewing his legal option and questioning whether Ono is lying for some other reason because she reached out to him for financial support last year, which he says he gave.
Abuse Allegations Go Viral
Actor Drake Bell is facing some serious abuse allegations from a former girlfriend who shared her alleged experiences with him in a now-viral TikTok.
Bell reported started dating a woman by the name of Melissa Lingafelt in 2006 when she was 16 and he would have been 20. That woman, a musician who now goes by Jimi Ono, first hinted at issues with Bell as part of a recent TikTok trend. Earlier this week, she posted a video featuring the song “Bulletproof” by La Roux with text that read: “Think you can hurt my feelings? I lived with and dated an alcoholic, abusive Drake Bell from 16-19.”
On Wednesday, she expanded on those claims with another post, starting off by saying she doesn’t care if anyone believes her because this is her story.
Then she said: “It wasn’t until recently that I actually realized that abuse is something that all women have to go through. When I started dating Drake, I was 16. I was home-schooled, I moved in with him, I was singing. It wasn’t until about a year when the verbal abuse started. And when I say verbal abuse, imagine the worst type of verbal abuse you could ever imagine, and that was what I got. It then turned into physical — hitting, throwing, everything. At the pinnacle of it, he drug me down the stairs of our house in Los Feliz. My face hit every step on the way down. I have photos of this.I don’t event want to get into the underage girls thing. I mean I will, but I’m scared.”
That video quickly spread throughout the app and was shared across other platforms as well. Eventually, Ono posted a statement to her Instagram story, saying that anyone who has been a friend of hers over the last 15 years knows about what she experienced.
She added, “Nobody wants attention from abuse!!!!!!! I hope this gives girls the strength to come out about their experiences with him, because I know for a fact he has hundreds of victims.”
Other Alleged Victims Speak Out
In the hours that followed her initial claims, Ono posted several other TikTok’s with screenshots of texts and direct messages she has received. Some of these posts were also shared on her Twitter and Instagram story.
The first showed someone saying they remember her telling them about the abuse, writing, “I remember the pics. I remember the physical fights. I remember him throwing you in a bathtub and scalding you with water. I remember him breaking all your antiques and I also remember calling the cops on him and having to stay at Molly’s house until shit fizzled over.”
Other posts show responses to her Instagram story, where some accused Bell of sleeping with minors. One individual even claimed that Bell raped her when she was in the 8th grade, while another wrote, “I remember you speaking to my friend on the phone after it happened and you told her he chocked you and spit in your face. That was in 2006.”
On top of that, Ono also shared direct messages from Bell’s ex-girlfriend of five years, Paydin Layne LoPachin. In those messages, LoPachin shared support and said, “I went through the same horrific verbal, physical, and mental abuse.” She also agreed with Ono’s claim that he had sex with “hundreds of underage girls.”
Finally, Ono shared a message from Gillian Leos, who also allegedly had a serious relationship with Bell. In that post, Leos says she dated Bell from 2001-2005/2006. She explained that she wished she had more proof for what she experienced, saying she has some photos but no voicemails or texts because “he broke every phone I had back then.”
“Like you I have many friends & witnesses to attest what he put me through,” she added.
Drake Bell Denies Allegations
Bell, for his part, has denied Ono’s allegations. In a statement to Variety, he said, “I never abused my ex-girlfriend or did so many of the other things Melissa falsely claimed on her Tik Tok video,”
“As our relationship ended—more than a decade ago—we unfortunately, both called each other terrible names, as often happens when couples are breaking up. But that is it.”
“Clearly, Melissa still felt close enough to me just last year that she was comfortable reaching out to ask me to provide her with financial support during a tough time (which I did). I do not know if today’s behavior is some kind of misguided quest for more money or attention. But I cannot and will not allow these offensive and defamatory allegations to go unchallenged and I am reviewing my legal options.”
He has not addressed any of the other allegations against him.
Ono Clears Up Rumors
Even after Bell’s response, Ono has continued to be vocal about her experience. She’s also been responding to users online in an effort to shut down rumors that she is not the same person shown in the photos that were in the TikTok.
In response to one user, she said, “The photos were taken of me 14 years ago. I had a little lip filler, and that’s that on that.”
She also clarified the name discrepancies people were seeing, saying Mellisa Lingafelt was her legal name. “I actually started going by Melissa Baldwin when dating drake. Baldwin is my mother’s maiden name and I was having problems with family at home.”
“I started going by my nickname, Jimi, (my grandfathers name) after breaking up with drake. I don’t like being called my legal name. I wanted seperaation from that time in my life.”
In other replies, she mentioned that she did go to the police, but did not explain when.
She believes has more underage victims and said she now has other alleged victims who have agreed to stand by her in court.
She hinted at legal action once more writing, “Everyone that has made accusations, including myself, ALL have witness accounts and evidence. Justice will be served!”
Hackers Hit Twitch Again, This Time Replacing Backgrounds With Image of Jeff Bezos
The hack appears to be a form of trolling, though it’s possible that the infiltrators were able to uncover a security flaw while reviewing Twitch’s newly-leaked source code.
Hackers targeted Twitch for a second time this week, but rather than leaking sensitive information, the infiltrators chose to deface the platform on Friday by swapping multiple background images with a photo of former Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.
According to those who saw the replaced images firsthand, the hack appears to have mostly — and possibly only — affected game directory headers. Though the incident appears to be nothing more than a surface-level prank, as Amazon owns Twitch, it could potentially signal greater security flaws.
For example, it’s possible the hackers could have used leaked internal security data from earlier this week to discover a network vulnerability and sneak into the platform.
The latest jab at the platforms came after Twitch assured its users it has seen “no indication” that their login credentials were stolen during the first hack. Still, concerns have remained regarding the potential for others to now spot cracks in Twitch’s security systems.
It’s also possible the Bezos hack resulted from what’s known as “cache poisoning,” which, in this case, would refer to a more limited form of hacking that allowed the infiltrators to manipulate similar images all at once. If true, the hackers likely would not have been able to access Twitch’s back end.
The photo changes only lasted several hours before being returned to their previous conditions.
First Twitch Hack
Despite suspicions and concerns, it’s unclear whether the Bezos hack is related to the major leak of Twitch’s internal data that was posted to 4chan on Wednesday.
That leak exposed Twitch’s full source code — including its security tools — as well as data on how much Twitch has individually paid every single streamer on the platform since August 2019.
It also revealed Amazon’s at least partially developed plans for a cloud-based gaming library, codenamed Vapor, which would directly compete with the massively popular library known as Steam.
Even though Twitch has said its login credentials appear to be secure, it announced Thursday that it has reset all stream keys “out of an abundance of caution.” Users are still being urged to change their passwords and update or implement two-factor authentication if they haven’t already.
Twitch Blames Server Configuration Error for Hack, Says There’s No Indication That Login Info Leaked
The platform also said full credit card numbers were not reaped by hackers, as that data is stored externally.
Login and Credit Card Info Secure
Twitch released a security update late Wednesday claiming it had seen “no indication” that users’ login credentials were stolen by hackers who leaked the entire platform’s source code earlier in the day.
“Full credit card numbers are not stored by Twitch, so full credit card numbers were not exposed,” the company added in its announcement.
The leaked data, uploaded to 4chan, includes code related to the platform’s security tools, as well as exact totals of how much it has individually paid every single streamer on the platform since August 2019.
Early Thursday, Twitch also announced that it has now reset all stream keys “out of an abundance of caution.” Streamers looking for their new keys can visit a dashboard set up by the platform, though users may need to manually update their software with the new key before being able to stream again depending on what kind of software they use.
As far as what led to the hackers being able to steal the data, Twitch blamed an error in a “server configuration change that was subsequently accessed by a malicious third party,” confirming that the leak was not the work of a current employee who used internal tools.
Will Users Go to Other Streaming Platforms?
While no major creators have said they are leaving Twitch for a different streaming platform because of the hack, many small users have either announced their intention to leave Twitch or have said they are considering such a move.
It’s unclear if the leak, coupled with other ongoing Twitch controversies, will ultimately lead to a significant user exodus, but there’s little doubt that other platforms are ready and willing to leverage this hack in the hopes of attracting new users.
At least one big-name streamer has already done as much, even if largely only presenting the idea as a playful jab rather than with serious intention.
“Pretty crazy day today,” YouTube’s Valkyrae said on a stream Wednesday while referencing a tweet she wrote earlier the day.
“YouTube is looking to sign more streamers,” that tweet reads.
“I mean, they are! … No shade to Twitch… Ah! Well…” Valkyrae said on stream before interrupting herself to note that she was not being paid by YouTube to make her comments.
The Entirety of Twitch Has Been Leaked Online, Including How Much Top Creators Earn
The data dump, which could be useful for some of Twitch’s biggest competitors, could signify one of the most encompassing platform leaks ever.
Massive Collection of Data Leaked
Twitch’s full source code was uploaded to 4chan Wednesday morning after it was obtained by hackers.
Among the 125 GB of stolen data is information revealing that Amazon, which owns Twitch, has at least partially developed plans for a cloud-based gaming library. That library, codenamed Vapor, would directly compete with the massively popular library known as Steam.
With Amazon being the all-encompassing giant that it is, it’s not too surprising that it would try to develop a Steam rival, but it’s eyecatching news nonetheless considering how much the release of Vapor could shake up the market.
The leaked data also showcased exactly how much Twitch has paid its creators, including the platform’s top accounts, such as the group CriticalRole, as well as steamers xQcOW, Tfue, Ludwig, Moistcr1tikal, Shroud, HasanAbi, Sykkuno, Pokimane, Ninja, and Amouranth.
These figures only represent payouts directly from Twitch. Each creator mentioned has made additional money through donations, sponsorships, and other off-platform ventures. Sill, the information could be massively useful for competitors like YouTube Gaming, which is shelling out big bucks to ink deals with creators.
Data related to Twitch’s internal security tools, as well as code related to software development kits and its use of Amazon Web Services, was also released with the hack. In fact, so much data was made public that it could constitute one of the most encompassing platform dumps ever.
Streamer CDawgVA, who has just under 500,000 subscribers on Twitch, tweeted about the severity of the data breach on Wednesday.
“I feel like calling what Twitch just experienced as “leak” is similar to me shitting myself in public and trying to call it a minor inconvenience,” he wrote. “It really doesn’t do the situation justice.”
Despite that, many of the platform’s top streamers have been quite casual about the situation.
“Hey, @twitch EXPLAIN?”xQc tweeted. Amouranth replied with a laughing emoji and the text, “This is our version of the Pandora papers.”
Meanwhile, Pokimane tweeted, “at least people can’t over-exaggerate me ‘making millions a month off my viewers’ anymore.”
Others, such as Moistcr1tikal and HasanAbi argued that their Twitch earning are already public information given that they can be easily determined with simple calculations.
Could More Data Come Out?
This may not be the end of the leak, which was labeled as “part one.” If true, there’s no reason to think that the leakers wouldn’t publish a part two.
For example, they don’t seem to be too fond of Twitch and said they hope this data dump “foster[s] more disruption and competition in the online video streaming space.”
They added that the platform is a “disgusting toxic cesspool” and included the hashtag #DoBetterTwitch, which has been used in recent weeks to drive boycotts against the platform as smaller creators protest the ease at which trolls can use bots to spam their chats with racist, sexist, and homophobic messages.
Still, this leak does appear to lack one notable set of data: password and address information of Twitch users.
That doesn’t necessarily mean the leakers don’t have it. It could just mean they are only currently interested in sharing Twitch’s big secrets.
Regardless, Twitch users and creators are being strongly urged to change their passwords as soon as possible and enable two-factor authentication.