An influencer has responded after accusations that she faked a motorcycling accident for the sake of a promotional Instagram post.
Tiffany Mitchell, who goes by the Instagram handle @tifforelie, boasts 212,000 followers, and last July posted a slideshow of images depicting a motorcycling accident she sustained.
In the now-archived post, photos depict Tiffany lying on the ground with her helmet lying nearby, while a friend helps her up.
But earlier this week she was accused of staging the shoot, in an article written by BuzzFeed editor Tanya Chen.
The feature particularly called Mitchell out for the appearance of a Smartwater bottle in one of the images, which the feature suggested could be a “brand endorsement”.
An Influencer Is Defending Her Decision To Post A Photoshoot Of Her Motorcycle Accident On Instagram— Tanya Chen (@Tanya_Chen) August 19, 2019
she also denied to me that the Smartwater featured in one of the professional photos is a brand endorsement https://t.co/pXe5HDcCF3 pic.twitter.com/r7tuXUNAS1
It is also pointed out in the Buzzfeed comments section that Mitchell has different coloured helmets in the two photos.
Tiffany Mitchell responds to staged photoshoot claims
The influencer has come back with a heartfelt response to the criticism, denying claims that the photoshoot was staged.
In a series of videos posted to her Instagram Stories highlights, she says she “didn’t even know” the photographs – shot by her photographer friend Lindsey Grace Whiddo – were being taken.
“A lot of the comments on that post were wonderful and supportive and encouraging and beautiful,' she says.
“But I did start getting a few more negative comments questioning, 'Why would you take photos during an accident? Why were you doing this sponsorship with Smartwater? Why are you glamorising an accident? Why weren't you wearing a helmet?''
She adds: “That's when someone brought me the water, I was laying there processing everything and I didn't know that Lindsey was taking photos, I wasn't even thinking about it, the water could have been any brand,' she added.
“This is a heavy moment for me, that's scary and I have this treasure of having these images.”
Earlier today, she posted a photo of herself on Instagram, which depicts her on her motorcycle.
In the post caption, she says she has used Instagram as a “tool for healing”, highlighting previous life experiences she has shared with her social media followers including miscarriage and divorce.
She also claims she lost a partner in a motorcycle incident three years ago.
This isn’t the first example of a social media influencer being held to account.
Yovana Mendoza, 28, AKA Rwvana, clocked up over three million followers across her YouTube and Instagram channels by promoting the benefits of a raw vegan diet, but earlier this year found herself under fire after fans allegedly found footage of her eating fish.
She later explained to her followers that she had stopped being a vegan for health reasons.