An influencer best known as Miranda Sings was accused of 'mocking AAVE' when she joked about Gen Z slang

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Moises Mendez II
·3 min read
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Colleen Ballinger aka Miranda Sings
Colleen Ballinger aka Miranda Sings Michael Kovac/Getty Images
  • YouTuber Colleen Ballinger, aka Miranda Sings, was called out on Twitter for "mocking AAVE."

  • Ballinger wrote in an apology that she was "trying to sound like an awkward mom who uses gen z slang."

  • Much of "Gen Z slang" derives from AAVE, or African American Vernacular English.

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

YouTuber Colleen Ballinger, more widely known as Miranda Sings, responded to allegations that she mocked AAVE - African American Vernacular English - in a tweet on Wednesday.

From her Miranda Sings account on Twitter, according to a screenshot captured by Twitter gossip account Def Noodles, she tweeted "Yo BRUH TikTok is so lit no cap I'm gonna yeet over there so fast low key. If I don't get on the fyp I'll be big mad and big yikes like high key that's not straight fire and so sus. Bet. But lowkey fr TikTok is so lit and GOAT" on Wednesday.

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One Twitter user commented on the tweet and told Ballinger that she was "mocking AAVE." Ballinger promptly posted an apology saying she felt "so stupid."

"I was trying to sound like an awkward mom who uses gen z slang so I google 'gen z slang' and used all the words that popped up. I should have done more research and realized that the words were AAVE. I deleted it and I'm so sorry."

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Twitter users were split as to whether or not this was something to be upset about because it was "Gen Z slang" or "stan language." This conversation has happened multiple times online, with some people arguing that AAVE and online "stan culture" have distinct languages.

Insider's Bria Overs previously explained that AVVE was "developed through the 'processes of second language acquisition' among slaves. 'West Africans newly arrived on plantations would have limited access to English grammatical models because the number of native speakers was so small (just a few indentured servants on each plantation),'" quoting linguist Jack Sidnell.

Overs continued to write, "Those critical of the appropriation of AAVE by white or non-Black people say that the practice reinforces toxic racial power structures in society that have an actual cost for Black creators."

She said this was exemplified through Peaches Monroe - the original creator of the term "On Fleek" and how it was commodified by Denny's, IHOP, and Domino's Pizza. She received no monetary compensation for the use of her term.

The same could be said about Jalaiah Harmon, Overs noted, the creator of the widely popular dance on TikTok - the "Renegade" - who received recognition for her dance after the New York Times' Taylor Lorenz profiled her.

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One person replied and said that Ballinger was "misusing and overusing AAVE," while numerous users followed suit and said that AAVE and stan language are not synonymous. A follower replied with a Carrd - a website-building platform that is commonly used on social media to provide additional information or resources for specific causes - that explained what AAVE is. Ballinger thanked them for sharing it and apologized once again.

Brittany Broski, also known as Kombucha girl, came under fire in similar criticism back in August 2020. "I feel like it's a very fine line between genuinely calling out a creator that's using AAVE or 'the blaccent' for comedic purposes versus quoting something," Broski said in a since-deleted Tiktok video. Broski tried to explain that "internet culture, like stan Twitter, stan culture has its own language" and "this is how you speak within these online communities," but later apologized saying she was trying to have an open dialogue with the ever-evolving conversation.

Read the original article on Insider