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From former Vice journalist and executive producer of hit Netflix documentary Fyre comes an eye-opening look at the con artists, grifters and snake oil salesmen of the digital age--and why we can't stop falling for them.
We live in an age where scams are the new normal. A charismatic entrepreneur sells thousands of tickets to a festival that never happened. Respected investors pour millions into a start-up centered around fake blood tests. Reviewers and celebrities flock to London's top-rated restaurant that's little more than a backyard shed. These unsettling stories of today's viral grifters have risen to fame and hit the front-page headlines, yet the curious conundrum remains: Why do these scams happen?
Drawing from scientific research, marketing campaigns, and exclusive documents and interviews, former Vice reporter Gabrielle Bluestone delves into the irresistible hype that fuels our social media ecosystem, whether it's from the trusted influencers that peddled Fyre or the consumer reviews that sold Juicero. A cultural examination that is as revelatory as it is relevant, Hype pulls back the curtain on the manipulation game behind the never-ending scam season--and how we as consumers can stop getting played.
Gabrielle Bluestone is a journalist and licensed attorney from New York whose writing has appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, New York Observer, Sunday Times Magazine, Esquire, InStyle and Gawker. She is the Emmy-nominated producer of Netflix’s “Fyre” and the associate producer of “Different Flowers,” winner of the 2017 Kansas City FilmFest Festival Prize.
Cat Marnell is the author of the New York Times bestselling memoir ‘How To Murder Your Life’. She was a beauty editor at LUCKY magazine. She wrote the 'Amphetamine Logic' column for VICE and was a founding editor of XoJane. Currently, she writes the column BEAUTYSHAMBLES—exclusively on Patreon.
Leah McSweeney is a streetwear pioneer, female entrepreneur, cultural provocateur, influencer, and mother living in New York City. Leah became notorious in New York City for launching Married to the Mob in 2004, one of the first streetwear brands for women, by women. For Leah, MOB was a direct response to the male domination of the streetwear scene at that time, and she set out to prove that women could not only establish themselves as innovators, designers and influencers in the arena, but as consumers as well. She successfully brokered exclusive partnerships for MOB with some of the world’s most desirable brands, like Kangol, KRINK, Colette, Reebok, Burton, and Nike to make MOB a cult classic brand. Leah McSweeney joined Bravo’s hit show Real Housewives of New York City last year for its 12th season, and was promptly dubbed the show’s “breakout star”. She recently launched a sleepwear brand called Happy Place. Leah is also an accomplished writer whose work has appeared in Penthouse and Tablet Magazine. She oversees her budding empire from her native New York City, where she lives with her daughter and chihuahua.