I’m Shmacked. Some call it a movement, some call it absurd. No matter what you’re calling it, with seven million YouTube views and counting, no one can stop it. The online videos have sparked controversy with their most recent stop at The University of Delaware, which started what could be considered a mini riot. I’m Shmacked has received attention from national news outlets countless times for their online videos, which celebrate the party scene at universities such as LSU, UCLA, Miami and, most recently, UT.
I’m Shmacked officially announced their visit on Twitter on Sept. 15. The video team had an official fall tour which did not include UT or other schools like Delaware, but they decided to make a party pit stops at both schools along the way. The first party was supposed to be thrown the next day at the UT pool on campus but ended up getting moved to a house on West Grace Street. I’m Shmacked’s second event was their filming of Tic Toc Tuesday at Cass Bar.
“West Grace was awesome. It had a Slip ‘n’ Slide and stuff, and Cass was just jam-packed and hectic,” said Junior Danielle Carr, who attended both events. “People were doing such crazy things just to get on camera. It was definitely the best parties UT has had yet.”
However, some students were annoyed that I’m Shmacked’s event at UT occurred on a Monday night.
“I definitely thought it was cool how the students were all so excited and social, but it was a little too much for a weekday,” Carr said.
Sophomore Kyle Ewing added, “I think it was a waste of time for them to come on a Sunday and Monday.”
Is UT getting “shmacked” necessarily a good thing? The video team has taken a lot of heat from the media who report I’m Shmacked are promoting underage drinking and drug use. Not only that, but in a world where employers can see your every move with the click of a mouse, how safe is it to be seen in an I’m Shmacked video and know that you can’t take it back? Jeffrey Ray (A.K.A. YoFray) and Arya Toufanian, the co-creators of I’m Shmacked, retaliated against these claims in a 2012 ABC interview.
The two said that students come to them saying they worked harder to get into the colleges they wanted because of I’m Shmacked. Because no students are tagged in the videos there is a slim to none chance of employers finding them, they said. Toufanian also added that employers should realize that drinking is a part of the college experience. On Sept. 20 I’m Shmacked tweeted, “People who film violence abroad don’t promote violence. Why is me filming drinking the promotion of drinking?”
Some feel that I’m Shmacked’s videos give a false representation of UT.
“I would be embarrassed to be in the video, because in those videos the things that they show don’t actually happen at parties here, and I would not want to be seen like that,” freshman Andrea Munoz said.
Freshman Reina Stern, who attended the I’m Shmacked party on West Grace, said, “girls were making out everywhere trying to get on camera. People started doing stupid sh*t like putting stuff from the lawn on the roof.”
Other students think I’m Shmacked’s video exaggerates the party scene at UT, but it still promotes school unity.
“I think it does promote school spirit for kids who party at least. The videos say, ‘Hey look how awesome our school is and how much fun we’re having,’” freshman Lisa Hatch said.
I’m Shmacked has already released a teaser video of their experience at UT, which can be found on their Instagram (@imshmacked). They returned to Tampa on Friday, Sept. 20, for another stay with UT students at the Hojo, but no official parties were thrown. I’m Shmacked will be returning to Tampa for Halloween weekend to film UM vs. FSU and will also possibly return in January for a feature on Gasparilla.
Selene SanFelice can be reached at email@example.com