Image credit: Rodnae Productions
By Isabelle Merralls
Where were you when you found out that Kim Kardashian and Kanye West were divorcing? When Scarlett Johnanson and Colin Jost got married and, most frighteningly, when the allegations of Armie Hammer’s cannibalism catapulted into pop culture news?
I know where I was… refreshing @Deuxmoi.
Mirroring the 2007 series ‘Gossip Girl’, The New York-based anonymous Instagram account ‘Deuxmoi’ went viral at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, offering an outlet for celebrity gossip for bored followers worldwide. It has since grown to boast 1.3 million followers and has transformed the way that I, and many others, consume news.
Having grown up fascinated by the glossy covers of tabloid magazines, I was compelled to follow Deuxmoi when it broke the Armie Hammer scandal in January 2021. Since then, my social calendar has shifted to ensure I am up to date with the latest influx of pop culture news.
My Wednesday nights are reserved for ‘blind items’, whereby the account editor shares anonymous submissions regarding upcoming projects and insider information. For example, a post hinted towards Rihanna’s pregnancy weeks before the news was published. My Sunday nights are even more interesting as the account shares countless ‘celeb spottings’, such as Bernie Sanders ordering soup at a Senate cafe and Sebastian Stan on a morning run. The limited 24-hour posts keep viewers interested and demanding more and more insider information.
So, is Deuxmoi an invasion of privacy?
It is fundamentally an intrusion upon the lives of famous people. Even Adele has admitted to being fearful that her name would appear in a post.
Is Deuxmoi a 2020s adaptation of the paparazzi?
The paparazzi are infamous for their obscene invasion of privacy, leading to the death of Princess Diana and the psychological breakdown of Britney Spears. The paparazzi’s influence meant that the front pages of magazines and newspapers forced the latest celebrity news upon the general public, many of whom are apathetic. Deuxmoi’s popularity is from word of mouth, meaning that those who wish to follow it can access the information, and those who lack interest are not forced to subscribe.
Ironically, tabloids like The Sun are using Deuxmoi as a source for some of their articles, emphasising the grip it has on celebrity news
By utilising anonymous public submissions, the account can remain blameless to the invasions of privacy alongside the blind items (which give riddle-like clues into the gossip).
Should the account be held accountable for spreading incorrect information?
To further distance themselves from accountability, the precursor to blind submissions reads “PSA: Don’t believe everything you read when it’s an email” which emphasises the lack of accuracy with the account by acknowledging that some submissions may be fake.
Will there ever be a limit to these intrusions?
I am torn between seeking out this frivolous gossip and respecting the lives of those in the limelight.
For the moment, my innate curiosity continues to stand above my moral reasoning, as I now return to Instagram and refresh the latest post.
Categories: Digital Culture