A new Twitter joke format has turned into real transactions over the mobile payment app Venmo.
Over the last few weeks, people online began tweeting about carrying out various tasks and petty favors for people in the form of “Venmo me and I’ll” do x thing for you.
At first, the tweets were mostly jokes. People said things like: “Venmo me $20 and I’ll comment ‘my condolences on your ex’s Instagram pic with their new significant other,” “Venmo me and I’ll endorse your skills on LinkedIn,” or “Venmo me $20 and I’ll comment ‘yikes’ on your enemy’s Instagram photos of your choice.”
A bunch of Twitter users confirmed to BuzzFeed News that they were merely joking and that they have not had anyone seriously inquire about their tweets. They were still eager to be paid, of course, if anyone was down.
However, some are actually receiving Venmo payments to carry out online and social media requests from strangers.
Keani Jury, 24, of Waianae, Hawaii, said she tweeted a series of favors to solicit Venmo payments last week “to be funny.”
“Venmo me $20 and I’ll comment ‘ew’ on an enemies selfie, $10 to msg your mans and see if he’s cheating, $5 for some feet pics,” Jury tweeted.
Despite it being a joke, she told BuzzFeed News that deep down she knew some may actually take her tweet seriously and take her up on the offer. She said she’d previously been offered money for photos of her feet, for example.
Lo and behold, within days of her tweet being retweeted a few hundred times, she actually received 15 direct messages from people inquiring about her services. Not all of them followed through, but a handful of them proceeded to send her money over Venmo.
“I wasn’t surprised people were paying me,” said Jury. “Women want security and $10 is a small price to pay, and some people just like feet.”
“I found out $5 is very, very cheap as well, so of course they want that deal,” she added.
Jury received four requests from strangers to message their boyfriends “and see if he’s cheating,” three for pictures of her feet, and two from those asking her to comment “ew” on their ex-partner’s photos.
She confirmed that she’s carried out every deed that was paid for. (We reviewed a series of screenshots of messages with boyfriends, comments, and messages of her sending over feet photos...but we’ll spare you from those.)
Jury is delighted to have what potentially could become a budding side business.
She said she feels like she’s conducting a social experiment of sorts. She wants “to see how someone would react to a total stranger roasting them for apparently no reason,” she said.
People online are applauding her for her entrepreneurial ambitions.
Others, like user @pumpkiim, who tweeted asking for $20 to “DM your man to see if he’ll cheat on you” on Monday, told BuzzFeed News she was amused and surprised to find messages from people asking if she was serious.
She said she’s in current talks with two women “wanting [her] to test their boyfriends.”
“We’re working on the details,” she said, laughing.
As amusing as she found this to be, she isn’t sure she’s entirely comfortable receiving the Venmo payments from these women.
“I feel bad...I don’t think I would actually let them Venmo me, but I’d be down to help catch a cheater for free,” she said.
27-year-old Emily Krieg, also known as @imkrieger on Twitter, joked that they’d “comment ‘yikes’ on your enemy’s Instagram photos of your choice” for a bargain of $20. They also received serious inquiries from people over DM.
Although only one person “followed through” with a request, they told BuzzFeed News.
Once their Venmo payment is approved and goes through, they vow to indeed comment “yikes” on the Instagrams of the customer’s choice. They also vowed to BuzzFeed News that they would screenshot the comment as an official receipt for the service.
It’s been a very short, and simultaneously a very long, 2019 so far.