Jessica Lucas

Jessica Lucas is a London-based writer who covers internet culture and online communities.

Riding the rails with YouTube’s hobo vloggers

Critics say their content is dangerous and irresponsible, but these influencers can’t get enough of the train-hopping life.

The Great Outdoors

YouTube lawyers are getting famous covering the Johnny Depp–Amber Heard trial

The legal commentators say they’re having fun — and making a tidy profit.

Celebrity

Meet the TikTokers obsessed with Harry Styles’ ‘secret’ love life

Fans known as Larries are convinced he’s in a same-sex relationship with One Direction bandmate Louis Tomlinson.

Conspiracy theories

Pro-choice pastors are using TikTok to preach to the masses

Male progressive Christian leaders are speaking out — and trying to change minds — about the Supreme Court’s likely decision to overturn abortion rights.

Religion

Ahoy! Meet the boatfluencer moms raising kids on the high seas

Despite major challenges, YouTube vloggers are taking their young children along on their oceanic adventures.

Mother's Day 2022

Squishmallows are adorable, but their online fandom has a dark side

Vigilantes are doxxing and bullying resellers. “People are going feral,” says one collector.

Animal instincts

Meet the TikTok ‘rave moms’ changing the male-dominated EDM scene

Women on the platform are advocating for a safer and more inclusive space for festival-goers.

Dance dance revolution

Meet TikTok’s cannamoms, mothers who proudly smoke weed

“We use cannabis, and we are productive as f*ck,” says one.

Parenting

Twitch streamers are struggling with 'trauma dumping'

Viewers are derailing chats with their personal problems, and streamers feel ill-equipped to deal with their issues.

Mental health

Meet the goonettes, women with staggering online porn habits

Hours-long masturbation sessions are the norm. “I love going brain numb to porn,” says one scenester.

Sex

Need your aura cleansed? These TikTokers can help.

Skeptics be damned, Reiki practitioners swear by their form of energy healing.

Spring Cleaning Issue

How TikTok heartthrob William White’s thirsty fandom turned toxic

Feuding among White’s middle-aged women fans is getting ugly. Meanwhile, the influencer is raking in the cash.

Drama

Meet the influencer dentists trying to save TikTokers’ teeth

TikTok is rife with terrible tooth-care trends and advice. Professionals are seeing the disastrous IRL consequences.

Dental health

‘The Sims’ machinima is a dying art form. Why do these creators still do it?

The heyday of the animated mini-movies is long over, but some YouTubers just can’t quit making them.

YouTube

Inside the high-drama world of prison wife TikTok

“There’s a lot of romance in this,” says one influencer married to an incarcerated man, “but there’s also a lot of hardship.”

Relationships

How one group is remaking sign language for the VR age

Helping Hands is forging connections between D/deaf and hearing people on the VRChat platform.

VR Week 2022

Inside the volunteer 'police department' arresting people in VR

Thousands are roleplaying as cops on the VRChat platform, engaging in a mix of right (saving hostages) and wrong (planting drugs on civilians).

VR Week 2022

Is the Actualized.org forum leading followers down a deadly path?

Ex-members are sounding the alarm about the site, led by self-help YouTuber Leo Gura. At least three adherents allegedly have died by suicide.

Dangerous mind

Middle East streamers are reeling after Twitch blocks their payments

The platform cites “certain tax information” discrepancies for the payout freeze. Arabic gamers feel betrayed and frightened.

Gaming

The British are coming! How U.K. drill music is taking over TikTok.

Americans invented drill, but the Brits have evolved the hip-hop genre — and are attracting huge audiences on social media.

Rap game