Natalia Taylor, who has an Instagram following of 318,000, decided to play a little trick recently. Pretending she was in Bali, she posted several swoon-worthy pictures to her account. However, these images were actually taken from inside her local IKEA store.
Taylor declared that Bali was the “perfect place to totally fake an Instagram vacation and totally lie to all of my followers.” Plus, it is also the perfect location for Instagram models to go to in order to capture those much-loved bikini snaps that their followers adore. In fact, Veronica Bielik is one such model who has recently posted content from Bali to her Instagram account.
However, Taylor and photographer Ally Amadeo were trying to prove a point about how internet content can be curated to exactly how a user wants it to be.
None of the pictures on her Instagram account included images showing Balinese landscapes. Instead, the model chose inside shots with tropical vibes and geotagged the holiday destination to further perpetuate the guise that she was holidaying abroad. While her Instagram account was devoid of landscape shots, Taylor did use photos of Bali on her Snapchat account. These were snaps taken by friends who had actually traveled there.
“Immediately, people started buying it — including my close friends,” Taylor explained.
Many of her followers quickly started commenting, automatically assuming that what the model had said was correct and that the geotag was also reliable.
“Our Bali princess,” one fan wrote in the comments section.
However, others were not so easily fooled.
“I know this is an IKEA!!!” said another follower.
“I see the price tag. I’ve seen this exact furniture there.”
However, Taylor was not phased. In fact, she was hoping that her followers would work it out. She even intentionally left some of the IKEA tags in the pics in the hope that they would be discovered.
Later, she posted a YouTube video that exposed herself and her fake trip to Bali. In the video, she explained to her 1.9 million YouTube followers exactly what she was doing recently with her Instagram account.
Using the fake influencer vacation, Taylor explained that she was trying to prove to her fans that not everything they see on the internet is actually real.
“Don’t trust everything you see on the internet,” Taylor said in her latest video.
“Sometimes, people wanna lie about who they are as a person and it’s not hard to do apparently.”
While she may have been trying to expose a valid truth about the world wide web, she did also state that she felt bad for potentially breaking the trust between herself and her followers.
Taylor also pointed out that the experiment was not sponsored by IKEA.