We Need to Talk About Tinx’s Old Tweets
And Caila Quinn decapitating a garden snake, and Revolve Fest...
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Let’s get into it!
I’m going to be honest with you: I’ve never followed Tinx—aka Christina Najjar, or @itsmetinx—closely enough to have much of an opinion on her. But… I’ve learned a lot about her over the past few days.
Some background: An American, Tinx grew up in London (posh!) before moving to California to attend Stanford University. Most pivotally, she gained notoriety during the lockdown stage of the pandemic with humorous pop culture commentary, “rich mom starter packs,” and more up-close-and-personal videos of herself talking into a microphone in a way that feels like you’re chatting with a close friend. She parlayed her success on TikTok into a full-blown career as an influencer, which includes a podcast sponsored by SiriusXM (“It’s Me, Tinx”), luxurious brand trips and sponsorships, and a community of nearly 2 million loyal followers across TikTok, Instagram, and Twitter. (Most of those come from TikTok, where she boasts a whopping 1.5 million followers.) And when I say “loyal followers,” I mean loyal loyal—I’ve never gotten so many DMs saying “nooooo I love her!” when I originally posted about the unsavory tweets of hers that have emerged.
She’s since branded herself as “TikTok’s big sister”—doling out advice as a thirty-something via Q&As, giving inspirational pep talks, and earnestly embracing the body-positivity movement. Yes, there’s snark, but overall, her followers seem to look up to her as a role model (or “big sister”).
Like many TikTok stars, Tinx’s rise to fame was meteoric. An “overnight success story,” if you will. And when lightning-quick rises to fame happen? Social media posts of the past tend to slip through the cracks—and, in many cases, eventually come back to haunt the person in question.
In this case, Tinx’s old tweets—ranging from the year 2012 to early 2020, right before she “blew up”—paint a picture of a person that’s a stark contrast to the woman behind the enormous brand she’s built today. They first emerged on her dedicated “snark” Subreddit, r/tinxsnark.
First, there’s the fatphobia.
(Unclear if this is referring to Lindsay Lohan or not, but that’s where my mind went first.)
There’s more misogyny and shaming of women’s appearances.
(For context, Ken Klippenstein is a progressive American political journalist.)
Some interesting COVID-19 takes…
And, apparently, it’s safe to assume Tinx was… more conservative in her political views than she currently leads her followers to believe she is.
While some of the tweets may seem innocuous enough in some people’s opinions, many of her longtime fans have expressed disappointment over finding out their “big sister” isn’t exactly who she’s led them to believe she is.
It’s certainly interesting that Tinx appeared to be more outspoken about her right-leaning views before becoming famous, and seemed to have created a more progressive, inclusive alter ego of sorts in order to appease the masses. Or… maybe she’s just changed?
What’s even more interesting, to me, is the misogyny and body-shaming. I understand that 2013ish was a “different time,” but… it’s difficult to defend or rationalize ever saying those things.
I do believe people grow, and are worthy of forgiveness and redemption. I promise I’m not writing her off or attempting to “cancel” someone for things they said in their youth, or problematic political beliefs of the past. Again, people can change. I just think, alongside her loyal fans, I’m simply interested in seeing her acknowledge them. (As of writing this, there’s been nada on the acknowledgement front.)
Again, I’m not a Tinx scholar or longtime follower, and I know there’s a lot more to this. So if you think I missed anything important, please let us all know in the comments!
Caila Quinn Decapitated a Snake
Yes, you read that right. Former “Bachelor” and “Bachelor in Paradise” contestant Caila Quinn posted an Instagram story last week of her encouraging her gardener to decapitate a garden snake they found in her Texas backyard with a pair of scissors. (You can hear her laughing and also suggesting “a hammer” in the video.) People are maaaaaad—and rightfully so. (Netflix’s Don’t F*ck With Cats proves that nothing will stir up the internet’s ire like animal abuse.)
MAJOR, MAJOR MAJOR TRIGGER WARNING: ANIMAL CRUELTY
Caila did eventually apologize—✨sparkle emoji✨ included—but not before internet sleuths went digging, uncovering video evidence of Caila admitting in a podcast interview that she tells Uber drivers with body odor to buy deodorant. (You can watch the offensive-as-f*ck clip here, and the full video is still up on YouTube.)
Do with this information what you will.
The Revolve Fest Discourse Is a Reminder of How Saturated the Influencer Economy Has Become
I don’t really have anything new to add to the discourse surrounding Revolve Fest—aka, the Coachella-adjacent, Palm Springs-based festival that’s hyped by the retailer every year. You’ve likely already seen the think pieces, TikToks, and Instagram stories of influencers lamenting about the unbridled chaos of this year’s festival. (Complaints included long lines for transportation, sky-high ticket prices at roughly $2,000 a pop for “regular folk,” hefty lists of deliverables—aka, content requirements—for influencers who only received store credit in return, a lack of food and water, and more.)
It’s been compared to Fyre Festival, which… I think is a bit extreme. Yes, it sounded extremely sh*tty, indeed. Long sun exposure and dehydration are very serious and dangerous.
This take from an alleged Revolve employee also hasn’t helped perception of the retailer:
(They’ve since apologized.)
While Revolve did fly out their top sellers in the influencer sphere and treat them to the actual VIP treatment—aka, completely comped trips, transportation, room & board, etc.—they made thousands of other influencers believe they were exclusive VIPs when they actually weren’t.
After consuming as much content as humanly possible about this drama, I’ve come to the conclusion that a lot of it also comes down to the fact that the numbers game of influencing isn’t doing anyone any favors. Between YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram, there are more content creators who’ve managed to monetize their channels—or are attempting to—than ever. And that’s AMAZING. Democratizing fame is one of the wonderful things about social media, in a world full of Hollywood nepotism babies and trust-fund kids attributing their success solely to “hard work.” So, many micro-influencers are willing to exploit themselves, or pay out of pocket for experiences, in order to stand out. It’s not like these numbers are going down anytime soon: Becoming a world-traveling, prosperous “content creator” is likely one of the #1 job prospects of young women today. (According to a 2019 article by CNBC, 86% of young people say they want to post social media content for money in the future.)
I also believe some of the influencers involved are at fault for… perhaps having an inflated sense of entitlement. From the sounds of it, fighting words and “Do you know who I am?”s were thrown around liberally during the chain of events. (It’s giving drunk Reese Witherspoon.)
So, what happens when this oversaturation hits the fan? Will the “influencer bubble” burst? People have been claiming it will for years, but I’m not so sure. Will it become impossible to break out once every genre of niche content is already covered? Only time will tell.
Let me know what you think in the comments—I could talk about this ALL DAY.
Thanks again for reading! 💕
Correction: A previous version of this newsletter accused Tinx of misgendering Caitlyn Jenner in April 2015. Caitlyn didn’t come out as transgender until one month later. My deepest apologies for the mistake.