The saga of Fyre Festival -- the music festival that promised an ultra-luxurious Bahamian getaway accompanied by major recording artists, super models, and yachts but instead delivered a scene of devastation -- just got dirtier. An exhaustive report in Vice News details how Fyre Festival organizers wasted the company’s money on endorsements from models, yachts, and a glut of other lavish outlays before logistical planning even began.
According to multiple interviews with former Fyre Media employees, serious planning for the April festival didn’t begin until February or early March, even though CEO Billy McFarland initially conceived of the event in October 2016. For months prior to the supposed bacchanal, organizers poured vast sums of money into glossy marketing campaigns, promoting the festival through social media influencers and models. Now 400 of those posts are the subject of a lawsuit filed against McFarland, Fyre Media, and his main business partner Ja Rule in Los Angeles Superior Court, alleging a violation of Federal Trade Commission rules. Consumers were allegedly made to believe that they’d rub shoulders with influencers and super models alongside yachts and gourmet cuisine, but the socialites and luxury fare were nowhere to be found at the festival site in Exuma, Bahamas. And as Vice reports, none of the influencers were paid less than $20,000 for their posts, while Kendall Jenner was given a whopping $250,000 for a single endorsement on Instagram.