11 Aug, 2023

The internet has been talking nonstop about Lil Tay — a 14-year-old American rapper whose ‘death’ shook social media. Except, she isn’t actually dead.

The young rapper, whose real name is Tay Tian, told TMZ she is the victim of a fake death hoax and social media hacking. A now deleted post on her official Instagram claimed that Tay and her brother had died. The post also falsely claimed her name was Claire Hope.

In a statement provided to TMZ by her family, she said “I want to make it clear that my brother and I are safe and alive, but I’m completely heartbroken, and struggling to even find the right words to say. It’s been a very traumatising 24 hours. All day yesterday, I was bombarded with endless heartbreaking and tearful phone calls from loved ones all while trying to sort out this mess.”

She said her Instagram account was “compromised by a third party and used to spread jarring misinformation and rumours regarding me, to the point that even my name was wrong. My legal name is Tay Tian, not ‘Claire Hope’.”

The post, which has since been deleted, did not give a cause of ‘death’.

Doubts about the veracity of the post began to arise when several media outlets contacted her father but he did not confirm the rapper’s ‘death’.

According to Variety, Lil Tay achieved viral fame as a nine-year-old social media influencer. She called herself the “youngest flexer of the century” and was known for her Instagram videos in which she showed off her lavish lifestyle. She hasn’t posted on her Instagram account since 2018.