A Singaporean group of Instagram influencers has shut down after criticism over its accompanying Patreon campaign.
The campaign sees members of the all-female SGInstaBabes collective creating 'photos, videos and private events' for supporters. Fans can subscribe to the content, which is offered in tiers.
The Patreon tiers range from a modest $3 a month, to the accolade of 'party king' which costs a casual $3750 a month. That'll get you one private yacht party every 30 days. We're not sure if the yacht is included in the cost.
Outlets online have criticised the brand, accusing the collective of being a "thirst trap" for male fans. Asian outlet Coconuts.co highlighted the "sordid matter of these ladies (some of whom don’t even look old enough to order a drink) appearing to be pimped out in exchange for money".
The founder of SgInstaBabes, Lai Wee Kiat took to social media to defend the collective. His original posts have disappeared, but outlets managed to catch his response before it was removed.
"My team and I aren’t trying to objectify women," Kiat begins.
"When I started SgInstaBabes, it was to bring out the vibrancy and the beauty of girls in Singapore, and yes, sometimes being sexy and cheeky too. When I started our Patreon, it was to give a chance to our followers to be more involved in our activities and to fund us.
We share more photos, we organize photo shoots and we party. And we’re thankful for all our subscribers, not think that we’re so great and they should feel privileged to join us. That’s it. Anything beyond that is your assumption and extrapolation. Unfortunately, I see that our innocent intentions are being perverted, just like how the dark web would.”