Lil Tay, the unfortunate 9-year-old Instagram star who dubs herself “the youngest flexer,” is...gone? She may not be gone for good, but as Jezebel points out, all of her problematic Instagram posts have disappeared.
The last footage seen of Tay, following her enlightening Good Morning America interview, came from WorldStar. In the video her face is blurred out, but Tay can be seen inhaling hookah and saying “oh my god” as she exhales. If you’re wondering where this girl’s parents are, well, WorldStar labels the person in the background as Tay’s mother and the hand giving her the hookah as her 16-year-old brother. While the criticism for this kid’s troubling behavior was first aimed toward the 9-year-old herself, over the past month the concerned mob has shifted its attention to Tay’s mom and brother, who seem to be pulling the strings.
It’s unclear, though, who exactly deleted all of the young IG star’s videos and photos where she brags about having a handful of expensive cars, clothes, and curses nonstop (she’s even said the n-word once). While she still maintains her 2.3 million Instagram followers, her avatar and bio have also been scrubbed.
In her interview with GMA, Tay maintained that she ran her own account. "No one is forcing me to do this," Tay said, adding that "it's not true" that her mother Angela Tian "wants to make money" off her and is running her social accounts. "I run my own Instagram,” Tay explained. However, the account bio previously included that it was “managed by management team,” perhaps to adhere to the Instagram’s age policy.
So was it Tay? Her management team? Her mom? Her brother Jason? Who deleted Lil Tay? And how long do we have before she returns?
I doubt this is the last we’ll see of the young flexer. When asked about the controversy surrounding his sister, and the claims that he was behind her persona, Jason told GMA “a lot of people are going to say this and that, we just keep going.”
Claims against Tay’s brother metastasized when a video of the 9-year-old being coached by someone off camera surfaced. In the video, the person can be heard giving Tay a script and telling her to sound “more ignorant.” DJ Akademiks also came by the Complex offices to expose Tay’s persona as being a concoction of her 16-year-old brother who is trying to recover from his failure as a wannabe YouTube star.
Whatever is going on here, I hope Lil Tay is taking her vacation from IG to get some fresh air, read a book, and hang out with some kids her own age. Her consulting team recently said Tay’s still on the come up after all this negative press, and looking forward to several commercial sponsorships and collabs with artists. It’s probably only a matter of time before she returns to once again clog our feeds with troubling content.