Culture / Music

‘Scamfluencers’ is the latest podcast series to sink its teeth into the world of lies and deception


Scammers, some of you will have witnessed their smooth delivery, been wooed by their magnetism — you may have even loved them (for that we're deeply sorry). Others will have only observed the elusive figures in shows like Inventing Anna and The Dropout. Either way, what's clear is that the social parasite is definitely having a cultural moment. So it was only a matter of time before their lies and deceptive ways were examined in a slate of true crime podcasts. One podcast in particular that's made our ears prick up is Scamfluencers, a Wondery series unpacking the point in which fame and fraud collide.

Hosted by Scaachi Koul, a Canadian author and culture writer at BuzzFeed, alongside Toronto-based journalist Sarah Hagi, the newly released podcast digs into the symbiotic relationship between scamming and social media, particularly how the biggest fraudsters are hiding in plain sight. Because as we're beginning to find out, Fyre Festival was merely the tip of the iceberg.

So far two episodes have dropped, with a third arriving on April 18 in line with Scamfluencer's weekly format. If your Mondays have been lacking colour since Euphoria wrapped up for its second season, then flock here for your weekly dose of chaos. There's two episodes dedicated to what the podcasters have described as "The Fyre Festival of the ballet world", a tale that involves dancing, a struggling marriage and as is sometimes the case, even death. Meanwhile, the upcoming episodes will centre on Zach Horwitz, whose Hollywood Ponzi scheme resulted in his arrest in 2021. Only after defrauding investors of $227 million first.

Of course, you can't discuss the phenomenon scammers without sinking your teeth into the pressures that come with late stage capitalism and the American Dream, so expect commentary of this ilk from Koul and Hagi also.

Listen to the first episodes of Scamfluencers on Apple Podcasts, Wondery or Spotify.

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