Ice cream man charges influencers double because they keep asking for free cones
Complimentary food is the creme de la creme of freebies. No matter when or where someone offers it to you, always say yes, no questions asked (unless it's in the middle of a dark alleyway at midnight). But some social media influencers are so desperate for on-the-house treats that they're disrupting the stable equilibrium of culinary commerce.
CVT Soft Serve in Los Angeles (where influencers roam like wild horses) has finally put their foot down. When influencers kept asking the food truck for handouts in exchange for tagged posts, the CVT co-founder decided enough was enough.
The ice cream vendors posted on Instagram that anyone who asks for free food will now have to pay twice as much as everyone else. The photo, shared on Monday, shows co-founder Joe Nicchi holding a sign that reads "Influencers pay double" with the caption:
"We’ve decided to make this thing official with signage. We truly don’t care if you’re an Influencer, or how many followers you have. We will never give you a free ice cream in exchange for a post on your social media page. It’s literally a $4 item...well now it’s $8 for you. #InfluencersAreGross
This comes after a post two days earlier of just the sign with the caption: "We couldn’t care less about how many followers you have, and we’re super embarrassed for you when you tell us."
Since their original posts, CVT Soft Serve has shared several screenshots from news sources writing about their new 'no influencers' policy. Though most of the comments on the post praise the company for its initiative, CVT decided to clear up their good press just in case:
"Of course the irony of this situation isn’t lost on me! I’m thrilled for the press, but my true excitement comes from exposing 'Influencers' and their fake followers."
And it seems like the food truck doesn't even need press from influencers. They already have famous customers like Bill Murray, who once stopped by for a cool treat in the Los Angeles heat.
Joe Nicchi started CVT - which stands for Chocolate Vanilla Twist - in 2012 with his wife Taylor. The couple wanted to open up an ice cream truck that dishes out East Coast soft serve in the West. CVT offers the two flavours and sprinkles. No other toppings. No nonsense.
Nicchi told Newsweek that being an influencer is today's version of asking "do you know who I am?" but for people without talent:
"I came up with the policy after being burned out on people trying to get free ice cream in exchange for their posts. L.A. is full of so-called 'influencers' with large followings that are actually fake because they most likely paid for likes and follows. Anyone can have a following if they want to pay for it. Google 'social media bots.'"
It's about time we started taking down the confusing influencer culture, one fit bikini-clad woman at a time.