Travis Scott has been accused of ‘exploiting’ the Astroworld tragedy and ‘profiting’ from the trauma of concertgoers after collaborating with the controversial virtual therapy provider BetterHelp.
The 30-year-old rapper appeared on stage at his Astroworld Festival in Houston last Friday when a spectator rally left at least eight people dead and hundreds of others injured.
Scott, who has had more than 40 lawsuits against him since the concert, issued a statement on Monday promising to cover all funeral costs and refund the price of all tickets.
He also announced that he is partnering with BetterHelp to provide free one-on-one online therapy to all concert-goers affected by the tragic events at Astroworld.
Criticism: Travis Scott, 30, faces backlash for collaborating with BetterHelp therapy app to offer Astroworld victims one month of free counseling
Allegedly: Jeff Guenther, co-founder of the National Therapy Registry TherapyDen, claimed in a TikTok video that BetterHelp, and possibly Scott, profited from the tragedy
However, the initiative was met with setbacks, and some even speculated that Scott would benefit financially from the partnership, which BetterHelp has denied.
A source close to Astroworld told DailyMail.com. Scott fully funds himself the free mental health service and in no way earns a profit on the initiative.
Problem: There has also been renewed criticism of the therapy app itself, including allegations that the company shares information with third-party advertisers
The person said that BetterHelp does not pay him anything and fans who decide to use the service will not be automatically billed at the end of the free month.
There has also been renewed criticism of the therapy app itself, including allegations that the company shares information with third-party advertisers.
“I can not really explain how much this makes me out,” tweeted podcast host Bridget Todd. ‘Therapy apps like BetterHelp have been [called] next to their outlined, non-properly regulated privacy and data policies. This’ partnership ‘just offers these young people to be further extracted and exploited for money.’
She added: ‘These children were already at extreme risk, so corporate interests and streaming platforms could make more money regardless of their well-being. Pumping them into BetterHelp just confirms it – everything is for sale. Everything is a “partnership opportunity,” even your death. ‘
Arguments: Critics slammed BetterHelp and Scott, claiming the partnership ‘exploited’ Astroworld victims
“This is so silly,” activist Wagatwe Wanjuki said in agreement. ‘Betterhelp is not adequate trauma treatment, it pays therapists like s ** t and they collect data. And a month is nothing. ‘
Another commented sarcastically: ‘Hi, I’m Travis Scott and I’m largely responsible for the deaths of eight people and thousands of traumas. That’s why this month I’m working with BetterHelp so they can sell your information to a third party to target you with ads in the hopes that you’ll spend money when you’re depressed. ‘
A number of people pointed out that the app already offers a one-month free trial via partnerships with Ariana Grande and Venus Williams, while accusing Scott and BetterHelp of taking advantage of the sign-ups.
‘DO NOT USE BETTER THERAPY FOR THERAPY. THEY SELL YOUR DATA TO THIRD PARTY APPS TO MAKE MONEY. THEY PAY LOTS OF $$$ TO INFLUENCERS TO CREATE PARTNERSHIPS AND EXPAND THEIR BUSINESS. “DO NOT LET TRAVIS SCOTT GET A GIVE OF THE ASTROWORLD TRAGEDY,” one person wrote.
Answer: A source close to Astroworld told DailyMail.com Scott fully funds himself the free mental health service and earns ‘no way’ on it
Tragedy: Scott appeared on stage at the Houston Festival last Friday when a spectator rally left at least eight people dead and hundreds of others injured
Legal issues: In the midst of the setback, Scott is facing over 40 lawsuits after the festival
‘Did we just go from a tragedy to a BetterHelp fire partnership?’ another asked, while another added, ‘Travis Scott is the type who turns 8 dying people into a paid promo post from BetterHelp, what a businessman.’
Many people shared Jeff Guenther’s recent TikTok video, in which the licensed mental health therapist describes how ‘BetterHelp, and possibly Travis Scott, benefit from the Astroworld tragedy.’
Guenther, co-founder of the National Therapy Registry, claimed that Scott ‘could make big money on all the referrals he sends to BetterHelp.’
How deadly chaos at the Travis Scott concert unfolded
Around 14.15, before the concert, video showed hundreds of people crashing through barriers at a VIP security checkpoint and crashing past the security checkpoint.
At least one person was injured in the afternoon scrum.
Houston Fire Chief Sam Pena said he was not aware of what caused the rush, but said any special precautions for this year’s festival “were not enough.”
Police Chief Troy Finner visited rapper Travis Scott before his set to express ‘concerns about the energy in the crowd’, according to The New York Times.
Scott was to perform at 21.00. A massive countdown timer came up 30 minutes before his set on a big screen.
ICU nurse Madeline Eskins said that the closer the timer came to zero, the worse the pressure was in the crowd.
“People were pushing themselves up against each other and pushing back and forth,” she told CNN.
Just after 9 p.m., Scott went on stage to launch his set, which also included a surprising performance by Drake.
When the rapper entered the stage, people had already begun to faint.
At 9.30 pm, officials received the first reports of injuries, Pena said.
Around 9.30pm, an ambulance entered the crowd and took 10 minutes to reach the patient.
Video footage, which has since been deleted, shows two men who appear to be part of Scott’s entourage approaching him on stage.
“You all know what you came to do,” Scott said, turning to the crowd before the music started up again.
Then he asked the tens of thousands in front of him to make ‘the earth shake’.
21.38, a ‘mass accident’ was declared, the fire chief said.
Scott maintains that he was not aware of the seriousness of what was happening, but he stopped the show on at least three occasions to ask the affected people for help.
Around 22.10, the show was finally stopped.
‘How do I know that? Because back in 2019, BetterHelp also tried to cooperate with me, and they waved a lot of money in front of me, ‘he explained.
Guenther has previously warned about BetterHelp’s practices, which he reiterated in his recent @TherapyDen video about Scott’s partnership with the app.
‘So all the kids who sign up for the free month should be aware that their data is being extracted.’
The source close to Astroworld told DailyMail.com that much of the information on social media regarding Scott’s partnership with the app is inaccurate, saying that the allegations that he is making a profit are ‘disgusting’.
“There are no sponsorships or branding agreements between BetterHelp and Travis Scott,” she said. ‘It’s disturbing [that] people are trying to punch holes in this partnership, potentially deterring those in need of mental health resources from seeking it. ‘
BetterHealth has also addressed the allegations on its website and insists that Scott is not being paid in any way.
The company also denied allegations that a person participating in the initiative waives any of their legal rights while addressing some of the misinformation that hovered online.
“Following the tragic event at Astroworld, Travis Scott’s team contacted BetterHelp with an initiative to cover the cost of therapy for those affected,” BetterHelp wrote.
‘As a mission-driven organization, we are happy and proud to help when we can, such as with the free therapy we provided to people affected by Hurricane Dorian, the El Paso shooting, California wildfires, the evacuations from Afghanistan and other events. , where there was a need for mental health. ‘
In the midst of the backlash, Scott and Live Nation – the entertainment company behind the Astroworld festival – are facing dozens of lawsuits.
A number of injury lawyers, including famed civil rights lawyer Ben Crump, claim that Scott, Live Nation and other parties behind the festival failed to provide the necessary security measures to prevent the storm surge that injured hundreds of people and killed eight concertgoers.
Crump – who represents victim Noah Gutierrez, 21 – said the tragedy was ‘years in the making’ due to a history of injuries reported at Scott’s performances, including three hospitalizations at the same event in 2019.
The lawsuits also claim that Scott continued to sing for more than 30 minutes despite numerous deaths, injuries and screams from fans that the show should stop.
“We hear horrific stories of the terror and helplessness people experienced, the fear of a crushing crowd and the horrific trauma of watching people die while trying to save them,” Crump said in a statement.
Meanwhile, more than 28,000 people have signed an online petition trying to block the rapper from performing as a headliner at the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival in California next April.
Crump created a special website where anyone else traumatized by the experience can seek legal assistance, which can be found at astroworldclaimshelp.com.
“We will seek justice for all our clients who were injured in this tragic and preventable event,” he added.