The song, which debuted at No. 1 on the Global Spotify Chart with over 11 million streams on the day of its release, sparked a pretty mixed reaction — namely due to its apparent reference to the controversy surrounding Ariana’s romance with her Wicked costar, Ethan Slater.
Ariana and Ethan were first linked last July, when reports claimed they were dating. These rumors came to light just days after her split from her now ex-husband, Dalton Gomez, was made public, while Ethan had also recently separated from his wife, Lilly Jay.
Sources close to Ariana and Ethan firmly denied speculation that they cheated on their partners, and instead claimed that they only began seeing each other romantically once they were both single.
However, Lilly Jay — who welcomed her first child with Ethan in August 2022 — publicly denounced Ariana, telling Page Six that she felt the singer was “not a girl’s girl,” She also told the Daily Mail, “I am focused on rebuilding a life for our son... This is what I am trying to do, and this is my only focus.”
And in her new song, Ariana appeared to address the buzz around the apparent relationship for the first time. She penned the lyrics: “Your business is yours and mine is mine / Why do you care so much whose dick I ride?”
While there is no confirmation of who Ariana is referring to in the song, many people speculated that she was making a jab at all the backlash around her romance with Ethan.
And so, while some fans argued that Ariana had done nothing wrong, “yes, and?” was met with heaps of criticism from people who were disappointed with her controversial lyric choice.
One person appeared to reference the singer’s history of seemingly being involved in breakups, as well as her 2019 track, “Break Up With Your Girlfriend, I’m Bored,” as they suggested that Ariana has “glorified being the other woman.” Meanwhile, someone else called Ari “out of touch.”
Well, a further look into the backlash Ariana has faced shows that the singer has lost hundreds of thousands of Instagram followers this month.
According to analytics site SocialBlade, Ariana has lost a total of 369,630 followers on Instagram since the start of January.
The data shows that the vast majority of people who unfollowed Ariana did so after her song “yes, and?” was announced on Jan. 7.
Ariana hasn’t addressed the backlash towards her song, but we’ll let you know if she does.