This weekend we wrote about an Instagram travel blogger who was being ‘stalked’ by a copy-cat account, but new information has revealed everything is not as it seems.
It was a crazy story that seemed to show an Instagrammer stalking Lauren Bullen (gypsea_lust), a famous travel blogger, around the world and recreating her photos with frightening detail.
Lauren then outed her ‘mega fan’ as @diana_alexa in a blog post entitled Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, that forced Diana to make her account private, although the two supposedly reconciled.
However the super sleuths over at Business Insider have discovered an insidious conspiracy at the heart of this story which may turn the whole thing on its head.
Apparently when they attempted to get in touch with Lauren she refused to put them in contact with Diana and they were unable to find her on there own leading to speculation this was a ruse to get Bullen more followers.
The theory goes that it would be extremely difficult for Diana, who doesn’t have much of a following on Instagram, to travel the world like Lauren does.
And while we’ve no doubt there are people on the web who would spend thousands to get a few hundred likes on Instagram this is where things get deep.
You see Lauren never geo-tags her posts, only tagging the city, which makes it highly unlikely that Diana could track down every single shop, beach and street Bullen had visited.
Another piece of evidence is the fact that Lauren and Diana appear to be wearing identical outfits which makes Business Insider believe that the pair are travelling together and swapping outfits.
The final nail in the PR stunt coffin is that if you Google ‘Diana_alexa’ and ‘gypsea_lust’, the results include a Twitter account from 2011 that links Diana with Bullen’s email address.
For her part Bullen denies faking the photos, but it’s worth noting she did gain 70,000 followers from the incident so…
More of a concept than a journalist, Tom Percival was forged in the bowels of Salford University from which he emerged grasping a Masters in journalism.
Since then his rise has been described by himself as ‘meteoric’ rising to the esteemed rank of Social Editor at UNILAD as well as working at the BBC, Manchester Evening News, and ITV.
He credits his success to three core techniques, name repetition, personality mirroring, and never breaking off a handshake.