Emma Chamberlain’s online store has been put "under construction" after fans critiqued a listing for a DM from her for $10,000.
On Saturday, Layla Saliba, a 23-year-old graduate student, tweeted a screenshot showing Chamberlain's store with a chance to buy a "Personal Thank You Note From Emma in Instagram DM!" for $10,000. The screenshot also showed the store's installment shopping service offering a payment plan of $902.58 a month for a year.
"why is emma chamberlain charging 10K for an instagram DM this is wild," she tweeted on Saturday.
Since Saliba's tweet, Chamberlain’s online shop has been "under construction." In a statement to BuzzFeed News following the publication of this story, Chamberlain's representatives called claims that she was selling DMs for $10,000 "false and inaccurate." Her representatives suggested that the post may have been part of testing and said that Chamberlain was never aware of it.
Celebrities and influencers charging fans for personalized messages isn't anything new. Cameo, a site where anyone can buy a personalized video message from their favorite D-list celebrity, has been around for years. But the most expensive Cameo is $2,000 for a customized video message from Gurdeep Pandher, whose dancing videos have gone viral.
Saliba told BuzzFeed News that at first she thought the $10,000 message for sale on Chamberlain's site was a typo. Saliba said she used to listen to Chamberlain's podcast, Anything Goes, but doesn't anymore because she didn't find it relatable.
"Nothing against her, but I’m a WOC working multiple jobs in grad school and I just got tired of someone who was very wealthy complain about how hard their life is," Saliba said.
So after not listening to the podcast for about six months, Saliba googled it to see what she had missed. And that's when she stumbled upon the online store’s page with the $10,000 DM.
Since her tweet about it on Saturday, Twitter users have started to make fun of the listing and also anyone willing to pay $10,000 for a DM from an influencer.
"LMFAO IM CRYING. no one is this important," one Twitter user said.
"You could get a used car for that price LMAOOOOO," another tweeted.
“'sorry, I can’t go out tonight. I need to save money for my $902.58 monthly ShopPay bill for the Emma Chamberlain dm I bought earlier this year,'” one user tweeted.
People also pointed out the absurdity of the payment plan option.
"At least you can finance it," one person tweeted.
"Hey man I don’t think I can go out tonight, I still got my monthly affirm payment for the emma chamberlain dm I got a couple months ago," another tweeted.
"The payment options was the craziest part," Saliba said. "$902 per month is more than a lot of people’s rent."
In a March 21 statement to BuzzFeed News, Emma Chamberlain's merchandise company, Cozak Inc, called claims that Chamberlain was selling DMs for $10,000 "false and inaccurate."
The company added, "In 2018, Cozack (Emma’s merch company) was testing a prospective reward program related to Emma’s Merch without her knowledge. In testing they created an outrageous, never activated reward level that was not intended to be active or purchased. These reward ideas were never run by Emma since they were not meant to be available for sale or reward, but simply intended for internal testing purposes. What we suspect is that data was activated and crawled by Google’s SEO indexing system and discovered by an individual who then began spreading false information to press outlets. This was never made public, and certainly was never planned to be sold or purchased. The test program was never discoverable on the main page or product listing site, which is another reason that Emma had no knowledge of this. With the internet’s tendency to create false narratives around sensationalized stories we wanted to provide you with the truth firsthand and from the source. The site is currently down for internal review."