â€˜Sheâ€™s a Sim.â€™ â€˜Sheâ€™s real!â€™ â€˜Sheâ€™s definitely fake.â€™
An Instagram account is sending users into a frenzy because they canâ€™t decide if its star is a real person or not.
Lil Miquelaâ€™s (@lilmiquela) Instagram account has only been active for around 14 weeks and has posted 75 times, yet boasts 65,700 followers.
While there seems to be little doubt that the photos posted to the account have been digitally altered â€“ at least in some way â€“ many of Miquela’s followers are still desperate for answers.
User Nicole.dogs_5 insisted she was a fan before admitting she was still bewildered by the images. â€œIâ€™m so sorry if anyone or yourself gets offended but I am so confused. You seriously look fake,â€ she wrote.
Chillcolin wrote: â€œShe is a video game/ graphic designer. She does this on purpose. Rumour has it, she is doing something for sims 5.â€
A photo posted by *~ MIQUELA ~* (@lilmiquela) on
Miquela herself has yet to confirm, deny or address the speculation over her identity. The list of accounts she follows gives little away â€“ she seems to be a fan of US hip hop and the American â€˜It girlâ€™ scene â€“ she follows Willow Smith, Sarah Snyder, Lily-Rose Depp, Hailey Baldwin, Khloe Kardashian, Kylie Jenner, Rihanna and Ariana Grande.
Dazed published an in-depth analysis of the account where it compared Miquelaâ€™s account to that of Amalia Ulman, the performance artist who constructed herself into a fictional character based around archetypes of femininity online, and who acted this out entirely over Instagram and Facebook accounts.
On Instagram Ulman was a beautiful woman with a lavish lifestyle. A narrative arc was played out in almost 200 photographs that documented a fake nervous breakdown, a fake rehab stint, and a fake breast augmentation, before she revealed that she had duped some 90,000 followers in what was hailed as â€œone of the most original and outstanding artworks of the digital eraâ€.
So whether this is a marketing campaign for the next Sims game; an art project by Jaden and Willow Smith or a graphic designer flexing their muscles, weâ€™re taking this one with a healthy dose of skepticism.