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Ominous message on 11-year-old influencer's Instagram leaves fans disturbed: 'This is bad news'

Kelsey Weekman
·3-min read

After more than two years of silence, a concerning message appeared on 11-year-old influencer Lil Tay’s Instagram Story, leaving fans worried about her.

Lil Tay, whose real name is Claire Eileen Qi Hope, first rose to fame (or infamy) in 2018 when her outlandish and profanity-laden videos flexing cash and expensive cars went viral. Millions of people then began following the so-called rapper, who was only 9 years old at the time. 

It didn’t take long for internet sleuths to discover that Lil Tay’s mother, who was a real estate agent, was using her boss’ car and some for-sale houses in the videos. She was fired from her job. 

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When footage of Lil Tay’s brother Jason telling her what to do off-camera leaked in May 2018, conspiracies began to form about who was truly in control of her actions, and the “free Lil Tay” movement took shape. 

By July 2018, an Instagram story with the message “help me” was shared to the account and saved as a highlight. 

Credit: Instagram/@LilTay
Credit: Instagram/@LilTay

No other content appeared until October 2018, when someone who alleged that they had worked with Lil Tay in the past shared a video of the child. The chilling caption made allegations about Lil Tay’s father, according to Dexerto.

Related: Why do we expect every child star to become a trainwreck?

“This was Lil Tay the last time she was happy, 2 hours before Christopher John Hope, her abusive absentee father who hasn’t been in her life for years, handed her a court order forcing her to go to his home in Canada in which she was constantly abused by Hope and his wife,” the post’s author claimed. The post has since been deleted. 

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Days later, Lil Tay’s father oepned up about his side of the story in an interview with Hollywood Life,

“When my daughter’s social media began to go viral this year, I disagreed with most of the social media activity. I took legal steps to stop things which I felt were dangerous to her physical and mental health and to her future,” he claimed.

Lil Tay’s Instagram account stayed dormant until April 21, 2021.

Credit: Instagram/@LilTay
Credit: Instagram/@LilTay

“We have bad news about tay…” the ominous Instagram Story said. 

Then, on April 22, an update simply stated “tomorrow 6:00 p.m. EST” with no further information about what could have happened to Lil Tay.

Fans immediately speculated about what it could mean — did something bad happen to Tay, or has someone just regained access to her account with an interest in stirring up publicity? 

Based on the fact it seems to be an announcement that was prepared in advance, people largely guessed that she’s just coming back into the public eye.

“Are they hyping up bad news? This is weird,” one Twitter user wrote

“Calling it now it’s gonna be some bulls*** like, ‘The bad news is…SHES BACK MF ALL YOU HATERS THIS IS BAD NEWS FOR YOU,'” another said

Maybe she’s back, or maybe there is something wrong. Time — and whoever is now in charge of her social media — will surely tell. 

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If you enjoyed this story, read more about why we expect child stars to become trainwrecks.

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