A challenge everyone is navigating right now is where their career fits into the ongoing spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, and how the recommended social distancing to halt it affects their day to day jobs. This includes influencers, particularly those whose content stream relies on them hanging out with their friends in communal properties like the Hype House, FaZe House, and Jake Paul’s Team 10 house.
As government recommendations for self-isolation get more strict, influencers are going to have to weigh up the benefits of sticking together with the health risks associated with living in big groups. For example, California, where the vast majority of influencers reside, was put into a state-wide lockdown by governor Gavin Newsom on Friday.
How influencer houses are handling social isolation so far
Some influencer houses have residents full time, like the FaZe House and Clout House. Others are a bit more come-and-go, like the Hype House, which only has a handful of permanent residents. The rest of the 20 or so members can rent out rooms as and when they please — as long as they make videos for the duration of their stay.
The latest TikToks on the Hype House’s account, as well as the profiles of many of the stars like Chase Hudson, Ondreaz Lopez, and Nick Austin, show pretty much business as usual — dancing together and promoting merch. Influencers are still gathering at Jake Paul’s mansion for skits and stunts. Gamers the FaZe Clan still appear to be chilling out at their new $30,000,000 mansion.
“The main risk when being around a lot of people in close proximity is the virus likely being passed across from person to person,” Doctor Aragona Giuseppe, a GP and medical advisor at Prescription Doctor, told Insider.
“This then promotes further spreading as once all these people leave, on their journey home they would most likely spread it on to others in close proximity on public transport, and so on and so forth.”
Dr Diana Gall from online medical service Doctor-4-U told Insider the risk becomes even greater if one or two people are flaunting the fact they are not following the self-isolation advice and are continuing to expose themselves to the virus in the outside world.
“Coronavirus can live on hard surfaces for up to three days if they are not disinfected properly and can spread easily through human-to-human contact such as dining together or sitting on the sofa watching television or gaming for more than 15 minutes,” she said.
“In a shared house, there are many high-risk touchpoints such as toilets, door handles and light switches, as well as less obvious ones such as kettles, phone chargers, washing machines, cookers, and television or gaming controls.”
‘If just one strays, they will be opening up the possibility of infecting everyone’
Alex Ruani, a doctoral researcher in nutrition science education at University College London, and Chief Science Educator at The Health Sciences Academy, told Insider that while there are no official guidelines about living in groups, anyone doing so should be extra cautious — not just for themselves, but to protect their housemates too.
“Influencers hold their mobiles in their hands for several hours daily,” she added. “This means they need to treat mobiles as an extension of their hands and sanitize them regularly, too.”
Stacy Jones, the CEO and founder of Hollywood Branded Inc, told Insider she hopes the millions of eyeballs on these influencers will stop them taking unnecessary risks. Florida spring breakers, for instance, were ridiculed online when they went ahead with their holidays despite the government and the World Health Organization urging people to stay inside as much as possible.