Social media can be filled with highs and lows for Influencers. One day, everyone's praising someone on their dance moves or lip-sync videos and then the next day throngs of former fans are highlighting said personalities for behavior they find disgusting.
Whether it's past skits that contain racial stereotypes or tropes or problematic behavior, fortunes can turn in a matter of hours. Popular TikToker, Jayus, is learning this the hard way but what did the content creator do?
What did Jayus do that's got so many people "canceling" her?
Jayus, real name Isabella Avila, has apologized to fans after screenshots of past Instagram DM conversations began making the rounds on social media. The screengrabs reportedly depict Jayus in conversation with a fellow content creator, who is Black, and Jayus uses the n-word in said conversation. Jayus was reportedly 17 when the messages were sent and the individual she was speaking to was 13.
The screenshots of Jayus' conversation show what appears to be an angry response to another creator.
The content creator in question was @freakdagemini0 (who posted said convo). Jayus first averred that the conversation was actually "fake," according to Hashtag Hyena. While it may seem like a lot of work for someone to go and create fake DMs, it's actually entirely possible to do so, and there are a number of fake DM generators folks can use online if they should so please.
Initially, the response to Jayus' controversy was bifurcated. Some people found it difficult to believe that Jayus was guilty of using that language in a DM. The influencer has a long history of advocating for equal rights among marginalized groups, especially for members of the LGBTQ community; Jayus has openly talked about being gay as well.
Within that group of "Jayus Defenders" lies another sub-group that sought to excuse her behavior if the alleged DMs were authentic. The biggest argument "excusing" Jayus' reported language is the fact that she was only 17 years old at the time.
There are several individuals who reject that logic, stating that racism isn't a trait that can be excused and that a 17-year-old should know better.
Others have alleged that Jayus used to have "BLM" in her bio, but her response to the recent controversy led her to remove her support for the Black Lives Matter movement.
Another group of individuals believes that the DM screenshots are legitimate and point to the "acceptance" from specific demographics as highlighting a clear social media double standard when it comes to influencers.
Many commented that it seems like some individuals are willing to excuse Jayus' behavior because she is a gay white woman. But the conversation as to whether or not the screenshots were legitimate ended once Jayus took to social media to share an apology for using said language. She said that she used the word because "it was the meanest" phrase she could think of.
Some people accepted her apology, while others are still on the fence given her past language and believe that she only wants "to do better" because it began to affect her livelihood.