Olivia Rodrigo is facing her first major controversy as a newly-minted high-profile celebrity.
On Wednesday, fans demanded an apology from the 18-year-old singer-songwriter after a resurfaced video of a previous Instagram Live stream showed her putting on a “blaccent” and using phrases within African-American Vernacular English.
In the compilation clip, Rodrigo can be seen playfully speaking to various followers while saying terms like “I be trending” and “emotional AF.” Take a look at the footage for yourself (below):
Not a good look for the rising pop star. Based on the birthday hat and the “I got my driver’s license” banner, it appears that most of the spliced videos were from earlier this year when the High School Musical The Musical star dropped her massive hit single. So BIG yikes!
In addition to the video compilation, a thread of her past tweets where she used even more AAVE terminology circulated on Twitter as well. Some of the posts read:
“Homegirl went platinum in two weeks!!!!! thank u guys so so much!!!!!!”
“I’m crine. Y’all are so talented. This is crazy.”
“boy u best believe imma be watching u kill it as evan. This means the whole world. Feeling is so mutual!”
“AHHH UR A STUNNA”
All of the messages were from around 2020 and early 2021 — after this sort of thing was more widely known to be offensive — so fans understandably were infuriated with and shocked by the Disney star’s behavior, to say the least. Some social media users commented on the original snippet, writing:
“this makes me really upset 🙁 she needs to apologize and if you are a non black person you don’t have a say if it’s offensive”
“She doesn’t sound like this when she sings big yikes”
Others were quick to point out the “double standard” of the performer using AAVE slang when the Black community is often discriminated against for speaking the exact same way. One person wrote:
“I think the problem here is the double standard… it’s cool and trendy for non-black people to talk like that but black people are still scolded for using aave even though they invented it.”
Another chimed in to support the argument, pointing out:
“I can see why ppl don’t think it’s that serious, but for me this is just annoying bc at the end of the day black folks definitely get discriminated against for using AAVE. Technically she’s not hurting anyone BUT she is perpetuating some mess and imma DOG HER for it.”
Of course, many people quickly came to Rodrigo’s defense for using slang that they considered being common across all platforms:
“I just think at this point it’s seen as “cool” or just the way gen z talks. It’s not. But at the same time we can’t blame her since everyone nowadays is trying to talk like that. As long as she isn’t being malicious or intentionally tryna harm others we should let her be.”
“It’s really not that serious. Most people in this generation talks like this now. You guys just be hating on her for just talking like how teenagers and young adults be talking. Haters gonna hate!”
Olivia has yet to address the accusations. But she may want to follow in the footsteps of Billie Eilish — who recently came under fire for the same kind of thing — and actually take accountability. Then again, those Billie videos were from several years ago…
What are your reactions to the Olivia Rodrigo scandal? Let us know in the comments (below).
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