If you aren't in the right-wing social media ecosystem, you may not be familiar with Libs of TikTok, an account that has become quite influential on Twitter. The account, which posts videos primarily of LGBTQ people from TikTok with the goal of shaming or harassing them, has become a crucial agenda-setter in right-wing media circles, and following an article in The Washington Post, the woman behind the account has been named.
Who runs Libs of TikTok?
Libs of TikTok is run by a woman named Chaya Raichik, who started the account that would eventually become Libs of TikTok shortly after the 2020 election. She claimed to be on the ground during the insurrection on Jan. 6, and even tweeted a play by play of the day's events as they unfolded. The account went through several variations before landing on Libs of TikTok in April, and getting a major boost from Joe Rogan shortly thereafter.
As it has gained more of a following, the rhetoric on Chaya's account has also intensified. She has leaned hard into discourse suggesting that teachers who discuss LGBTQ issues in the classroom are "groomers," and even suggested that any teacher who comes out as gay to their students should be fired on the spot. Her tweets targeting trans youth were particularly popular, and she described gender non-conformity as a "mental illness."
As The Washington Post reports, the account has even had a legislative impact and was credited by Florida Governor Ron Desantis's press secretary with influencing her thinking on how LGBTQ issues are handled in classrooms. Now, Chaya's name and information are publicly available, and she is not thrilled about her identity being unveiled.
Chaya Raichik said she had been "doxed" following the story.
Although the identity of the owner of Libs of TikTok is clearly newsworthy, Chaya was unhappy about the way her identity had been unveiled in the pages of The Washington Post. In tweets posted following the story, Chaya went after the story's author Taylor Lorenz for revealing her name, saying that she had been "doxed" because she had made efforts to hide her name from the public.
Taylor and many of her colleagues have offered a vociferous defense of their reporting, as has The Washington Post newsroom.
"Lots of convo about the 'harm' of covering a powerful online figure, but not much abt the harm done to the average LGBTQ+ ppl the acct seeks to drive out of schools and public life," Taylor wrote on Twitter. "I hope people read this whole story and understand this account’s impact."
Chaya, who posts videos of everyday people to provide fodder for right wing commentary, is upset about being reported on in The Washington Post. She does not seem to understand the irony of being upset about valid reporting even as you are promoting every day Americans who have done nothing wrong so that they can serve as fodder for various right wing culture wars. Chaya may not have wanted her identity revealed, but I'm sure the people she highlights didn't want to be featured either.