• Follow us

Social Media

Fyre Festival designer Oren Aks says he's proud of the work he did with FuckJerry

2018%252f04%252f02%252f74%252fheadshot.edeb7.jpg%252f90x90By Morgan Sung2019-02-08 18:32:17 UTC

You probably remember Oren Aks as the often exasperated former FuckJerry employee who was featured in the Hulu documentary Fyre Fraud. 

The graphic designer managed the disastrous festival's social media accounts but quit the company about six months after the festival fell apart. After Hulu's documentary was released, Twitter users voiced their support (and thirst) for him — even Chrissy Teigen gave him a shout out. 

Hi. It is me. Oren Aks. I’m actually the designer behind the festival. I’m happy to be here. Would love to make some cheese sandwiches with you @chrissyteigen sometime 🙃

— Fyre Festival (@fyrefestival) January 15, 2019

Although he's settled in Barcelona at the moment, Aks is still proud of the work he did for Fyre, design-wise. He even still manages the official Fyre Festival Twitter account, and includes it in his online portfolio — with a disclaimer that says: "I am in no way affiliated with the mismanagement of the festival, I was only contracted in the start to consult & design."

During a phone interview with Mashable, Aks chatted about when he realized the festival went to shit, why he left Jerry Media, and why he actually likes the work he did for Fyre. 

I've seen stories that you're running away from Fyre, but on your Instagram you're just on vacation — can you just clear that up? 

Just chilling, yeah. No running away. 

So is this a vacation for you? What brought you to Barcelona?

It's a little ... I work remote. I'm a designer so I hop around. I'll be in Tel Aviv soon, bouncing around the states, I just like to take my work on the road. 

As someone who saw it [Fyre Festival] all go down, I think you would be more inclined to believe the Hulu documentary was more accurate than the Netflix one, but what were the biggest blind spots you saw in either documentary? 

I think a lot of characters, on both sides, were leaning on specific sides of the story. Hulu had people that Netflix couldn't, and vice versa. Hulu relied heavily on one team, or two teams, describing the story. 

I've seen a lot of people complain that it was ethically slimy that FuckJerry was working on the Netflix documentary, considering their part in Fyre. What do you think of it? 

It was just a client, any other agency would take on. There's a certain time when a client is in ... it puts you in a position that you need to decide what to do next. And at some point Jerry Media quit, and where we are now is a real question of "How do we handle the story?" You can fight it or you can just live with it. 

But do you think it was possible to produce a well-balanced documentary, considering they had a stake in it? 

Hmm. Yeah, I think they could have, if they really wanted to. They could have delved really deep into it. Both of these docs could have been even better if if people got really into it, and got really psychological. There's really so much more both sides could have done, but it's a light watch. 

And why exactly did you leave the company?

There was a multitude of things, but in general I just felt like I was wasting my time there and that I could do everything that I was doing there on my own, that I was just not feeling the energy of my coworkers. Things were just boring me, I was bored and felt mistreated. 

What do you mean by mistreated? 

Not treated the way I wanted to be in the office. The environment was just hostile sometimes, in these weird office-y ways. Salary-wise, I was asking for raises and never getting anything. No benefits, since the day I started there, zero insurance. 

Those are just basic things, those aren't even personal-level requests. 

Do you remember an exact point when you were working on the festival but you realized it was going to shit? 

There were a few key points that I really put things into question. The moment it really hit, though, was when we arrived and I saw it in person. 

But your website still shows off the design you came up with for Fyre's social media, like that Instagram feed. Are you still proud of the work you did for it? 

Yeah, I think as a design piece, I'm proud of it on its own. I don't like what has happened after or because of it, but I think as a standalone it's a pretty cool thing that I've done. 

So you stayed on at Jerry Media after the festival anyway. Why?

I tried to work it out. I had stock in the company and I felt like it would be a shame to leave over some short term, petty feelings, and maybe I can keep working on it because I want to be here for the long run. But after a while, the money just didn't make sense for how I felt. 

What do you think about FuckJerry donating what they made from the festival to the Bahamian restaurant owner who wasn't paid? Do you think it was genuine, or do you think it was just a PR stunt?

I think it was ... I think it was both. He's [Elliot Tebele] not a bad human, but I think the timing ... it was also done in a weird way. But whatever, it doesn't matter. It was done. It was interesting to see now, I'm curious how they feel. 

What do you mean? 

It's just interesting working on something and then having to donate everything you worked for. I didn't do this for money, Hulu never paid me. For me it was time and money put into this. 

Speaking of that, why did you agree to be in the Hulu doc? 

Basically to tell the truth! I knew the Netflix doc was coming out, and I didn't want my story to be unheard. I couldn't go into meetings and show this product off, it had a bad taboo to it. I wanted to clear the air and make sure future clients were like, cool with it, and understand it, and my career is not over forever because of it. 

I've been thinking of ways to show it on my website and my portfolio, and it's complicate. You have to educate somebody and a whole industry just to be like, "See, now that you understand marketing, it's fine!" 

So it's hard to do that in a really quick combover of your website. 

Before the documentary come out, did you advertise the fact that you were involved in Fyre Festival? 

Yeah, it was like, my shining jewel. I was always posting about progress on Instagram, doing polls on what design I should go with. Just having fun with people who are into my work, or my friends. 

And the second it all went down, everyone, even the influencers, took their orange squares off and ... we were watching it in the office, we were watching the internet just take everything down. We were like, we have to make sure we screenshot everything. Top level influencers took theirs down. Mid-range influencers took them down. 

[After the] fallout, people definitely came out the woodwork after I deleted it and said, "Hey, I saw this thing on your Instagram, weren't you part of this thing?" 

How did you usually respond to that? Have you ever like, hid the fact that you were part of it? 

Not hid, but just like, not talked about it. I had a meeting for a pitch about something that would be perfectly aligned with what I did there, and I just left it out. Just telling myself that I'll be fine, even without this great addition to it, I'll be alright. 

But then other times I've worked with some younger entrepreneurs who did understand it and will hire me specifically ... for mentality of how we got things done. 

In a legal sense! Haha, working hard in a legal sense. 

Yeah! There's been a lot of criticism of FuckJerry stealing content, and stealing posts for ads. What's your stance on that, from someone who's worked so heavily in social media?

It's one of those things, I came from a very traditional design background. Things were copyrighted, and you owned your work, and people that ripped you off are really bad. So it was hard for me in the beginning to be like, "Here's your task. You have X, Y, and Z to accomplish for this new account." 

And now, I'm thinking, I'm just gonna illustrate it. I'm gonna do my own design stuff.

They were like, "Yeah, this is great and all, but just do it quicker." 

So the point is that, my background [at Thrillist] was Getty and stock images, just having this very limited amount of what I could and couldn't do, and then the week after just being like "Do whatever you want." 

Do you feel like what you're doing now is more fulfilling? 

Yeah, slightly so. I'm not working as much as I'd like to be. I'm taking it slower, which is nice ... but I'm also ready for bigger projects. 

When looking for projects, what are the red flags you look for to prevent another Fyre Festival?

I think these days what I'm looking for is management. It's a lot about management, who's in charge, what are they saying, how are they backing it up? It's a major, major thing that I never looked at in jobs before. 

I'm just kind of doing my own little research on that end. 

Anything else you wanted to say? 

Just in general, the next thing I'm working on is getting out there. Working on some projects that do good, whatever that looks like in the arts. 

This interview has been edited for clarity. 

Cms%252f2017%252f5%252f398a6713 b681 c4d9%252fthumb%252f00001.jpg%252foriginal.jpg?signature=xehmeusvkvf35honmzz4wt7v ac=&source=https%3a%2f%2fvdist.aws.mashable

Read More

Leave A Comment

More News

TechCrunch » Social

Instagram’s fundraiser stickers could lure credit card numbers 2019-02-18 17:04:37Mark Zuckerberg recently revealed that commerce is a huge part of the 2019 road map for Facebook’s family of apps. But before people can easily

YouTube under fire for recommending videos of kids 2019-02-18 13:31:24More than a year on from a child safety content moderation scandal on YouTube and it takes just a few clicks for the platform’s recommendat

UK parliament calls for antitrust, data abuse probe 2019-02-17 19:01:25A final report by a British parliamentary committee which spent months last year investigating online political disinformation makes very uncomfortabl

VCs aren’t falling in love with dating startups 2019-02-17 12:09:44Coinciding with Valentine’s Day, Crunchbase News took a look at the state of that most awkward of pairings: startups and the pursuit of finding

Even years later, Twitter doesn’t delete your direct 2019-02-15 13:57:50When does "delete" really mean delete? Not always, or even at all, if you're Twitter.

TikTok spotted testing native video ads 2019-02-14 16:51:29TikTok is testing a new ad product: a sponsored video ad that directs users to the advertiser’s website. The test was spotted in the U.S. TikTok

First look at Twitter’s Snapchatty new Camera feature 2019-02-14 11:48:20Twitter has been secretly developing an enhanced camera feature that’s accessible with a swipe from the home screen and allows you to overlay ca

Instagram confirms that a bug is causing follower 2019-02-13 09:28:01Update: Instagram says the issue will be fixed by 9AM PST on Thursday. Update: we’re expecting to have this issue resolved by 9 a.m. PST tomorro

Manipulating an Indian politician’s tweets is worryingly easy 2019-02-13 06:46:01Here’s a concerning story from India, where the upcoming election is putting the use of social media in the spotlight. While the Indian governme

2018 really was more of a dumpster fire 2019-02-13 06:00:53Around 37 percent of Americans were subjected to severe hate and harassment online in 2018, according to a new study by the Anti-Defamation League, up

No, your tweets aren’t awful. Twitter’s Likes are 2019-02-12 19:59:53Update: Twitter said the issues have been resolved. We’re happy to report that these issues are now resolved. Thanks for your patience! —

Instagram is now testing a web version of 2019-02-12 15:11:49Insta-chat addicts, rejoice. You could soon be trading memes and emojis from your computer. Instagram is internally testing a web version of Instagram


Elon Musk would rather sit in freeway traffic New! 2019-02-21 18:38:03While making bold predictions about full self-driving cars during a podcast session with an investment firm this week, Tesla CEO Elon Musk also shared

Doug Bowser is the new president of Nintendo New! 2019-02-21 16:47:14Reggie Fils-Aimé is retiring as president and COO of Nintendo of America, Nintendo announced Thursday, and Doug Bowser is taking over. Yes, his

This space harpoon could be a solution to New! 2019-02-21 16:31:01The RemoveDEBRIS mission has successfully tested a harpoon that was designed to capture space junk in orbit. This marks the second successful attempt

Neptune's newfound mini moon may have been created 2019-02-21 16:29:20Astronomers refer to it as "the moon that shouldn't be there." Read more...More about Mashable Video, Neptune Moons, Hippocamp Moon, Hippocamp Form

People are thirsting over this unnervingly hot statue 2019-02-21 15:59:22Good news everyone. Abe Lincoln is hot.  At least this statue of him is. A rock-hard Abraham Lincoln, 16th president of the United States, graces

'Jeopardy!' fans are freaking out over the new 2019-02-21 15:49:10Since the dawn of the the show, Jeopardy! has followed basically the same structure. When Alex Trebek appeared on the premiere of the Jeopardy! All St

A study of 'ultraprocessed foods' had some bleak 2019-02-21 14:42:48A French study revealed there is a 14% higher risk of early death with each 10% increase in the amount of ultraprocessed foods consumed. Read more...M

Kingdom Hearts III continues Disney's crossover gaming magic 2019-02-21 14:36:30The latest installment of the epic pairing between Square Enix and Disney sticks to all the things that made the first two installments of Kingdom Hea

Want to try CBD? Get 25% off CBD 2019-02-21 14:17:04CBD talk has been so prevalent on the internet (and in Coca-Cola meetings) recently, it's nearly impossible to not be at least a little curious as to

Obama advises men to avoid toxic masculine behavior 2019-02-21 13:59:40At the fifth anniversary celebration for "My Brother's Keeper Challenge," the former U.S. president said the idea of men dominating others to prove

The first trailer for Jordan Peele's 'Twilight Zone' 2019-02-21 13:18:34 "It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity..." — now, with Jordan Peele at the helm.  The first trailer for CBS'

'The Haunting of Hill House' renewed as anthology, 2019-02-21 13:04:40Netflix has conjured up a second season of last fall's buzzy, spooky drama The Haunting of Hill House.  It will be helmed once again by creator

The Next Web

Arkadium CEO Jessica Rovello on Solitaire’s enduring appeal New! 2019-02-21 17:18:28There’s a certain kind of computer game everyone plays, the kind that have been around for so long most people don’t even know a time when

Predictive policing is a scam that perpetuates systemic 2019-02-21 16:19:20It’s difficult to tell whether wide-spread use of predictive policing AI is the result of capitalism or ignorance. Perhaps it’s both. AI c

Marketing and CX enter the age of machine 2019-02-21 14:40:46There is no longer a delineation between digital and traditional customers. Anyone with a smartphone traverses between online and offline activities w

Can foldable phones deliver where tablets failed? 2019-02-21 12:32:09Yesterday, Samsung unveiled its most ambitious phone to date — the ultra-flexible Samsung Galaxy Fold. This 5G-enabled tablet-smartphone hybrid

S10, S10+, S10e hands-on: Samsung’s galaxy of Galaxies 2019-02-21 12:06:24After months of seemingly endless rumors and speculation, the Galaxy S10 is here, and we had the chance to play with it – or rather, several ver

Meet the lawyer-turned-artist behind classical cryptocurrency paintings 2019-02-21 11:11:07Over the past 10 years cryptocurrency, blockchain, and art have become the most surprising and unlikely of bed fellows. Street art, graffitti, and mem

A brief history of cryptocurrency and blockchain white 2019-02-21 10:11:33It’d be foolish to undermine the role of white papers in the cryptocurrency and blockchain ecosystem, given these industries – estimated t

This $20 course breaks down the secrets to 2019-02-21 09:30:00Ilise Benun is one of the world’s most vocal advocates for not only dreaming about life on your own terms, but actually doing it. With her cours

TNW and the Financial Times partner for TNW2019 2019-02-21 08:09:49Our annual technology conference is fast approaching. On May 9 and 10, we’ll bring together the brightest minds in the industry to discuss the f

Zuckerberg’s ‘blockchain login’ plan makes absolutely no sense 2019-02-21 08:02:43Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is exploring the possibility of leveraging blockchain technology for the company’s third-party login services. In a

Angel/Devil: Should I buy Apple Airpods? 2019-02-20 12:22:48The last quarter of 2018 was a watershed moment for Apple’s Airpods. The wireless earbuds went from being a (sorta) niche bit of hardware, to th

How to choose the right musical instrument for 2019-02-20 11:59:40This is the second article in a series imploring STEM workers, students, and entrepreneurs to learn to create music. The first article explained


Model 3 Gets Bad Report Card, Leading to New! 2019-02-21 17:50:00Plus, more signs of a sputtering U.S. economy stoked fears of a bigger economic slowdown and sent stock prices lower today.

10 Questions to Ask Before Committing to a New! 2019-02-21 16:49:54Having a partner could share the load ... or create added burden.

75 Items You May Be Able to Deduct New! 2019-02-21 16:33:00You could save a bundle this year if you carefully consider your business expenses for possible deductions for taxes.

9 Low-Cost Business Ideas for Animal Lovers 2019-02-21 15:47:55'Products and services that help people care for their four-legged family members are in a growth pattern that I don't see slowing down for the near

With Democrats in Control, House Looks at Ending 2019-02-21 14:00:00The federal government taxes cannabis mercilessly, and all in cash.

8 Toxic Types of People You Should Keep 2019-02-21 13:57:59Individuals with these qualities can sap your energy and put a strain on your business.

How This Fight Club Entrepreneur's $50,000 Investment Turned 2019-02-21 12:34:57As a boxing and MMA promoter, Roy Englebrecht knows something about staying tough in business.

6 Myths About Presenting and How Overcoming Them 2019-02-21 12:30:00Give great presentations by ignoring the conventional wisdom.

The Essential 5-Step Sales Tactic That Will Improve 2019-02-21 12:00:00Your sales tactic needs room to flourish. Here is the format you can use to organize it.

A 5-Step Approach to Commanding More Attention in 2019-02-21 12:00:00Here's how to position yourself and your business.

5 Steps for Turning Your Invention Ideas Into 2019-02-21 11:47:00Got a great idea for an invention but not sure what to do with it? Turn your dream into a marketable product with these easy steps.

Nike High-Tops Split Open Mid-Game, Injuring Duke Basketball 2019-02-21 11:44:40Here are three things entrepreneurs should know today.

Disclaimer and Notice:WorldProNews.com is not responsible of these news or any information published on this website.