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Travis has been keeping a relatively low profile since 10 people died during his Astroworld performance in November, but his social media activity has been branded “incredibly offensive” toward victims’ families.
The annual event, named after his 2018 album, is produced by Travis and the tragedy occurred during his headline performance, where he was accused of “inciting the crowd.”
Despite calls to stop the show as fans struggled with the growing audience, Travis continued performing for a reported 37 minutes after the festival had been declared a mass casualty incident.
Sources close to the rapper have maintained that Travis was not aware of the severity of the crowd surge, and in December he suggested that the media were unfairly pinning the blame on him in his first sit-down interview since Astroworld.
“I’m the face of the festival, I’m an artist,” Travis said at the time. “So yeah, the media is… They wanna put it on me.”
Over the weekend, a clip of 20-year-old singer Billie Eilish stopping her show to help a fan at a recent concert in Atlanta went viral.
In the clip, Billie noticed that somebody in the crowd was struggling to breathe and asked if they needed an inhaler.
Pausing her performance, Billie spoke to the fan from the stage and waited for crew members to locate an inhaler and take it to them. “Relax, we’re good. We’re taking care of our people, hold on,” Billie told the waiting audience.
Once she was sure that the fan had recovered, Billie said: “I wait for people to be OK until I keep going.”
Although she did not name Travis, many interpreted this to be a reference to the Astroworld tragedy, and she soon hit the headlines for making a “shady” comment about the rapper.
On Thursday, Kanye West — who legally changed his name to Ye last year — shared a screenshot on Instagram of one of these headlines, which read: “Billie Eilish dissed Travis Scott at her concert after she stopped the show to give her fan an inhaler!”
In the post’s caption, Ye demanded that Billie issue an apology to Travis, who he is good friends with, and threatened to boycott Coachella Festival if she didn’t.
Kanye, Billie, and Harry Styles are each due to headline different days of the California event in April.
“COME ON BILLIE WE LOVE YOU PLEASE APOLOGIZE TO TRAV AND TO THE FAMILIES OF THE PEOPLE WHO LOST THEIR LIVES NO ONE INTENDED THIS TO HAPPEN,” Kanye wrote.
The rapper went on: “TRAV DIDN’T HAVE ANY IDEA OF WHAT WAS HAPPENING WHEN HE WAS ON STAGE AND WAS VERY HURT BY WHAT HAPPENED AND YES TRAV WILL BE WITH ME AT COACHELLA BUT NOW I NEED BILLIE TO APOLOGIZE BEFORE I PERFORM.”
The post sent the internet into a fever pitch, with many insisting that Billie had nothing to apologize for — a stance that she maintained when she acknowledged Kanye’s post.
Keeping her cool, Billie simply commented: “literally never said a thing about Travis. was just helping a fan.”
Travis also reacted to Kanye’s statement, with fans noticing that he had liked the social media post in a move that sparked a fierce backlash.
Sharing a screenshot of Travis’s like on Kanye’s post to a Reddit forum, a commenter wrote: “Travis liked the post, he really has no remorse for what happened 🤢.”
“Omfg the audacity of Travis. Dying to save face… No remorse. Him liking it literally shows his disingenuousness and selfishness,” another agreed. A third said: “Seriously! The lack of empathy drives me nuts. It’s devastating. It’s incredibly offensive to the families that he’s doing petty stuff like agreeing with this wrong opinion.”
One more wrote: “Travis needs to go away. The families are still reeling over this tragedy, to like a post saying you basically did nothing wrong is so disrespectful to the families of the victims. Get outta here.”
Travis now appears to have unliked the post, and BuzzFeed News has reached out to his representatives for comment.
Earlier this month, it was revealed that Travis and Live Nation — the company responsible for organizing Astroworld — now face one giant lawsuit that combines almost 400 individually filed cases against the festival.
The individual lawsuits will move forward as one case that will represent close to 2,800 victims who have been affected by the tragedy.
A Texas court panel granted the joint motion to combine the litigation before a single judge for all pretrial hearings on Jan. 26.
The lawsuits allege that Travis and Live Nation were legally negligent in the planning and execution of Astroworld, with legal documents obtained by Billboard reading: “We conclude that the cases arising out of [Astroworld] are related, and we find that transfer of those cases would result in more efficient pretrial of the related cases.”
This kind of multidistrict litigation (MDL) is common in mass injury lawsuits and used to avoid the inefficiency of trying multiple separate cases that share similarities — such as Astroworld.
A single judge will now oversee the hundreds of cases in a more efficient way, with the MDL also meaning that negotiating a single settlement to resolve all of the separate cases will be easier.
Billboard report that thousands of victims are seeking billions of dollars in total damages through the lawsuit.
Following the tragedy, Travis and his partner Kylie had a brief social media hiatus, but slowly returned to Instagram over Christmas and New Year.
On Sunday, Kylie announced that they had welcomed their second child, a baby boy, on Feb. 2, 2022, but they have yet to confirm his name.
The pair already share 4-year-old daughter Stormi.