Friday, July 4, 2014

The Not so wonderful world of "Vloging": The delcine and death of the CTFxC

For those of whom that are of keen sense of the wave that is vloging on Youtube, you must know of the CTFxC. The vloging channel started by now We The Kings bassist Charles Trippy, his vlogs including his (Now ex) wife Alli Trippy (Nee Speed), dogs Zoey and Marley, his parents, his then in-laws, and his friends/band mates in We The Kings, has almost 1,500,000 subscribers and holds a world record in the Guinness Book for longest non-stop daily vlog on Youtube (6 straight years). Diagnosed with brain cancer in 2013, and suffering seizures since 2012, he's not stopped, even filming his brain surgery and rehab. 

Recently, on April 7th, 2014, he uploaded a vlog entitled "We Need To Talk". It's here that he announced that after a 5 and a half year relationship which included a 2 and a half year marriage, he and his wife Alli, who vloged along side him and became a fan favorite, were divorcing. After countless videos, including skits, set backs, high times and low points, they were calling it quits. Alli, who'd ran, and still runs her own, independent channel from Charles on Youtube, was absent from the video, later revealed by her as a choice made by Charles. The strong, and then considered kindest fan base on Youtube flocked to the comments to leave well wishes and kind words of sorrow for the couple who were going their separate ways, that is until the internet interfered. Uploaded in the late morning, the comments were peaceful and kind. Disaster struck later that afternoon that has only gotten worse. Gurugossiper happened, and happened in a big way.

Someone, whom I won't mention because they don't deserve it, posted link to their forum in the comments on the video, where people had started doing what the forum was designed for. Gossiping. The forum goers, mainly all teenage to early 20's aged females, had started to ease their way into the role of private investigator, and started looking at Charles' online comments and usage. They managed to dig up comments he made on various photos, and "likes" made on a woman's Instagram and Facebook profile, whilst still in the relationship with his wife Alli. This is all they had to go on (Pretty much still is), along with the "We Need To Talk" video. Commence cheating rumors on the part of both Alli and Charles, along with rumors of spousal abuse (Rumor had it that Charles had thrown a camera at Alli's face in a fit of rage, blackening her eye).

The monkey wrench of the internet that was thrown into the cogs of the fandom had worked marvelously. In the original video announcing the split, Charles addressed the fact that he and Alli had been arguing for quite some time, and that it had reached it's peak to where neither were happy anymore, despite trying to work on it away from the videos. He said that the two constantly being away traveling didn't help things. He stated that neither party had cheated or wronged the other in any fashion, and that it was mutual. Charles included that he wanted to stay close to her, and her family because they had grown very close and he wanted it to stay that way despite the divorce. Alli would echo sentiment in a video she would make weeks later, after collecting her thoughts. None of this would sit well with the fan base, who by the time Alli released her video, had split into "Team Charles" and "Team Alli". Very few, like myself who's watched from day one in 2006, were Team Both.

What was once and cohesive and kind fandom/community, had now turned like virus victims in a George Romero zombie film. Upset over many things for very selfish reasons, they attacked like said zombies and and ravaged the comments with hate, accusations and threats of physical harm, one going so far as to stalk Alli and threaten to "Rip her face off and eat it." Those against Charles use(d) cheating as their excuse, as did those who were anti-Alli along with hate about leaving him while having cancer, and cheating with first, a We The Kings band mate of Charles', and then a life long friend of her own (People using a vague section of video from the vlogs as proof). This was and still was just an attempt to make themselves feel better, and have a reason to sleep better at night, because they didn't like the truth. I liken it to the CM Punk leaves WWE debacle. 

Moving along, those at the aforementioned forums, after a series of vlogs from Charles, who is still soldiering on with the vlogs, uncovered that he had started dating again, by snooping on Facebook and Instagram. Despite both He and Alli BOTH stating that they had doubts about the relationship even before they married, and then stating that their relationship had been over for a while off camera, the "teams" just couldn't accept that. Cries of "He moved on too quickly" arose, and still echo now. These fueled the cheating rumors. They bothered and bugged and harassed and bullied and threatened Charles so much, that he had to include a daily message about being kind and moving on in the vlogs everyday until the divorce was announced as final. He has since introduced his new girlfriend (Named Allie) in the vlogs whom many have grown to like, yet some continue to harass her because the Gurugossiper forums revealed that she had a DUI her family has a criminal background. Snooping yet again throwing a wrench in the works. 

Still, hate persists towards Charles. People set up fake accounts to troll him, and baiting him to make comments about his ex-wife Alli, buy bashing his new girlfriend, or disguising it as support for him, all in the effort to get him to say something in  the heat of the moment so they can screen shot it and send to Alli, in hopes of ruining ANY chance she and Charles had of remaining friends, believing they're acting in Alli's defense. People STILL bring it up in the comments and on reddit daily, further making the fighting last longer. They STILL argue in the comments on the videos and elsewhere, so much so, some are determined to get him to admit he cheated, though both he and Alli stated he didn't, and neither did she. They refuse to unsubscribe, though some have. The last real bit of news in the story, is on the opening day of Warped tour, Charles under duress from the hate he was getting sent, and just ending a cycle of chemo treatment (Cycle 9 I believe) had a seizure on the tour bus in the wee morning hours. His band mate Hunter, and his girlfriend had to make sure he was ok, and was by his side as it happened. He played the show that day, as he had done once before. 

Moral of the story, the internet can be the greatest place on earth, and the absolute worst all at the same time, and will turn on a heartbeat the minute something changes that people don't like. Fans are passionate, and after a certain amount of time especially after 6 years, when they get used to something, and then it's no longer there, they revolt. They can be hurtful, mean, nasty and downright terrible people, but because they're keyboard warriors, and the internet and it's anonymity give them "Virtual courage", they'd NEVER walk up to them and saying anything negative. They'd have to face repercussions. Real world cause and effect. Not physical harm, but a verbal dressing down. Rightfully so. It's indicative of the fact there's no privacy on the internet. Even of you don't want it out there, people will find it and leak it, or force you to make it so. Entitlement at it's worst. Take notice, that though people would have you believe that males are predominately the bullies of society, take a look at the bullying in this case. 70% or more of the hurtful comments, come from females. 

In the end, people, especially those who live vicariously though others online, need to check themselves. There's a bigger problem than Charles and Alli's personal lives that you DON"T get to see. It's you lacking empathy, sympathy and and general manners that's the problem. Think of others before yourself. Your words do more damage than you think, and hurt more than your intended target. They hurt all involved including you. 

I know this isn't my "normal" fare, but it needed addressing.  

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