Viral

Instagram influencer responds to ‘staged crash’ backlash… gains likes

Instagram influencer hits back at claims she staged a fake motorcycle crash scene after her posts trend heavily for all the wrong reasons...

The Instagram influencer at the centre of a row over whether images she posted purporting to be taken after a motorbike crash were genuine or staged has responded, maintaining it was not a crass publicity stunt.

First the background. Tiffany Mitchell, a prominent Instagram ‘influencer’ with a sizeable 211,000 followers, reportedly suffered a fall from her motorbike, images of which were then shared on her page. 

Traumatic? If true, no doubt… but questions soon began to be raised. Initially the queries focused on the sheer quality and composition of the images, which just seemed so ‘perfect’. Then there was the lack road burns, the helmet had been removed and there was a suspiciously prominent placement of some branded water. 

The tale snowballed rapidly when Buzzfeed ran a report on it calling her out for what it claimed to be a staged scene, pointing out what it believed to be discrepancies in her story. 

“How could anyone believe it was staged?”

The backlash has been vociferous, not least when it quickly began trending, but Mitchell has hit back saying that while she admits the quality does raise questions, the notion it was faked for ‘likes’ and ‘sympathy’ is untrue.

“Looking back at the photos, I can see why they seem so staged and, if I hadn't been there myself, I might also have a hard time believing they weren't," she told the BBC.

"I can tell you on my own personal and professional integrity that not only were they un-staged, Tiffany had no idea they were being taken until hours later."

"I have no idea how anyone could believe that this was staged or being exploited for attention for a brand campaign.”

She also added the helmet had been taken off once she had calmed down (despite this being against medical advice) and that she didn’t go to hospital because she didn’t display symptoms of concussion (though this can develop later and it is advised to get a check regardless).

As for the bottle of water, she maintains it could have been ‘any water’.

All news is good news…

The backlash against Mitchell comes at a time of increasing wariness over how genuine social media posts are because of the increasing competition between influencers, which attempt to grow followers and develop brand relationships with the content they post.

It is this self-perpetuating cycle that has been called out increasingly by cynical followers, though ironically this global publicity – however negative – has seen her gain thousands of followers as a result, while Mitchell says she has no plans to stop posting content.

All’s well that ends well… and no-one was seriously injured at the crash scene. Real or otherwise. 

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