The fallout from libertarian paradise/social experiment Fyre Festival has continued today, with charges that the truly elite invitees were warned to stay far away, a kind of apology from Ja Rule and revelations from a former talent organizer at the festival who celebrated not having to sign an NDA by immediately writing about what a mess the attempt to organize the festival was.
— William N. Finley IV (@WNFIV) April 28, 2017
Writing about her experiences for The Cut, Chloe Gordon explained just how many things went wrong in the run up to The Island of Dr. Ja Rule:
I was excited, at least at first. Flying in, the water looked beautiful — but I was almost immediately warned not to go near it because of a rampant shark problem. That was an omen I regrettably missed.
Gordon writes that after landing, instead of being taken to a beautiful green space, she and fellow Fyre Festival employees were taken to a gravel-strewn lot full of sand flies. From there, her job mostly involved trying to get money that didn't seem to exist for the festival performers, and letting her bosses know that the whole thing was a disaster waiting to happen. Ja Rule eventually showed up to check things out, and gave the following toast to try to pump everyone up: "To living like movie stars, partying like rock stars, and fucking like porn stars."
Despite Ja Rule's inspirational words, Gordon quit shortly after most of the production team was fired and she was "allowed" to stay on provided she agreed to be paid two-thirds of what she was originally promised. Still, she was one of the lucky ones, since at least she didn't wind up actually staying on the island as it all fell apart. Also missing in action though, were the highly influential models and A-listers who were supposed to frolic in the shark-infested waters. According to Page Six, they were M.I.A. because they were warned to stay on their yachts or just not come near the island at all. Fortunately, Page Six reports that poor Kendall Jenner, who's really been through a lot lately, was "safe in L.A." and doing alright despite managing to get associated with another internet Schaudenfraude festival.
Ja Rule posted an apology to his Twitter account in which he wrote he was sorry even as he insisted that this was "NOT MY FAULT." He also used the time-honored tactic one uses when something is not a scam and wrote in all caps that the Fyre Festival was "NOT A SCAM."
— Ja Rule (@Ruleyork) April 28, 2017
The Fyre Festival organizers also apologized in their own way on their website, in a statement that began "Billy McFarland and Ja Rule started a partnership over a mutual interest in technology, the ocean, and rap music." It turned out that a mutual interest in the ocean didn't quite translate to an ability to build a small city on a remote island or cover travel logistics for the thousands of guests who also shared the men's interest in technology, the ocean and rap music. "The team was overwhelmed," the organizers wrote in the apology/explanation for why the festival was canceled.
But even in this dark moment, there was a silver lining:
Then something amazing happened: venues, bands, and people started contacting us and said they’d do anything to make this festival a reality and how they wanted to help. The support from the musical community has been overwhelming and we couldn’t be more humbled or inspired by this experience. People were rooting for us after the worst day we’ve ever had as a company. After speaking with our potential partners, we have decided to add more seasoned event experts to the 2018 Fyre Festival, which will take place at a United States beach venue.
That's right people, the Fyre Festival will be BACK in 2018, so save some jokes for next year when the festival is hit with the world's first actual Sharknado.