Billie Eilish and Matthew Vorce.
#youlikegirls, Billie Eilish--right?

June 13, 10:30pm PST: #youlikegirls (named after Eilish’s controversial caption) trends on Twitter amid accusations that is Billie Eilish queerbaiting and allegedly dating a racist homophobe.

Matthew Tyler Vorce is the man Billie Eilish is rumored to be dating. She hinted at a secret boyfriend in her documentary, Billie Eilish: The World’s a Little Blurry and claimed that she “went on a date for the first time yesterday” in a video accompanying her June 2021 British Vogue cover.

Billie Eilish and Matthew Vorce were first seen together during a “seemingly romantic getaway to Santa Barbara, California” on April 19, 2021. The pair were last seen together during a VIP trip to Disney World on Thursday, June 10.

Screenshots: Alleged Matthew Vorce Facebook posts.

Fans have dug up posts allegedly from Matthew Vorce’s past. The unverified Facebook posts, which date as far back as 2011, include slurs like the n- and f-words. One comment made on March 11, 2012, says, “Asian people with hospital masks on. What the fuck are you doing?” Other comments compare Adele to “a british Miss Piggy” and claim that “girls that say they are free spirits are just sluts.”

Matthew Vorce, who is 29 as of June 2021, was 19 or 20 when these posts were allegedly made.

Screenshots: corduroygraham and mxcardona on Instagram.

He responded with “FINALLY!” on Instagram (using @corduroygraham) to two comments made by a fan, one of which is about the alleged 2011-2017 Facebook posts. It’s unknown which of the two comments he was responding to. His friends have also been defending him on Instagram.

To complicate matters, Matthew Vorce is 10 years Billie Eilish’s senior and their relationship hasn’t been confirmed. If Eilish is dating Vorce, however, many consider Eilish’s recent music video “Lost Cause” and subsequent Instagram post (both published during Pride Month) to be “queerbaiting.”

What is “queerbaiting”?

Wikipedia defines queerbaiting as “a marketing technique for fiction and entertainment in which creators hint at, but then do not actually depict, same-sex romance or other LGBTQ+ representation.” Urban Dictionary adds a second definition: “When straight men or women pretend to be gay and flirt with people of the same sex as a joke.”

In 2021, Billie Eilish’s Lost Cause music video came into the discussion after multiple fans accused her of queerbaiting. The video depicts a group of women dancing, twerking, and cuddling. A closet, which some believe to be an innuendo for coming out, is also a prominent location in the video.

– Wikipedia 

Fans claim that Billie Eilish is “queerbaiting” after she posted follow-up photos of the “Lost Cause” music video with the caption “i love girls.”

 

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A post shared by BILLIE EILISH (@billieeilish)

Many fans believed this was Billie Eilish’s way of coming out and grew frustrated when her supposed relationship with Vorce was revealed. Comments under the Instagram post range from “Why can’t girls just love their girl friends?” to “She’s literally queer baiting and not one soul sees it.” to “You guys are really dramatic🤡.”

Rich Ferraro, chief communications officer at GLAAD, told Yahoo Life that “queerbaiting” or “gaybaiting” is often “from brands or talent who are trying to market products or projects to the community and have a goal not to create change, but to profit from LGBTQ dollars.”

Some on Twitter are voicing their own opinions on Billie Eilish’s long-speculated sexuality.

Others are drawing conclusions from Eilish’s association with Vorce.

Still others are pointing out that Eilish has previously denied being bisexual or gay.

Billie Eilish’s Response

Billie Eilish has not officially responded to the accusations, but has reportedly liked a post “calling out her fandom and claiming the alleged posts were made up.”

#youlikegirls Twitter Space

In a confusing and disorganized Twitter Space, speakers took turns explaining their thoughts on Billie Eilish’s recent posts, actions, and relationships.

Although topics were scattered, most of the discussion revolved around Billie Eilish’s love life. Many people expressed the belief that Billie Eilish dating a racist or a homophobe is proof of complacency.

Others pointed out her supposed “blaccent” and “performative” remarks regarding racism.

One user compiled clips of Eilish supposedly mocking Asians and using a “blaccent”.

Some users expressed frustration at the lack of Asian or women-love-women speakers, particularly when some speakers mistakenly equated women-love-women relationships to lesbian relationships. (Women-love-women relationships can involve lesbians, bisexuals, pansexuals, or nonbinary/trans women.)

At one point, rumors about Eilish’s previous relationships came up. One was about a rumored 2018 fling between Eilish and Danielle Peskowitz Bregoli, known professionally as Bhad Bhabie.

Eilish addressed the rumor in an Instagram story, in which she claimed Bregoli was her little sister.

Some users accused others of victim blaming and pointed out that Eilish had a history of being sexually groomed.

One user states that Eilish being a victim and responsible for her actions are not mutually exclusive.

The space was reportedly hijacked by unwelcome speakers and moved more than once.

Social Media History and Parasocial Relationships

Calling out problematic attitudes or actions based on previous posts or recordings is a staple of this generation’s parasocial relationships. As one user aptly pointed out, however, celebrities don’t know their audience personally and are not subjected to the same social pressure as friends or loved ones would.

Another user eloquently states that “individuals are not responsible for your interpretation of their actions as gay/homoerotic.”