The Rise of the NYC Clout Guy

The Rise of the NYC Clout Guy

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The internet was recently captivated the story of “Tabi Swiper,” a man who allegedly took and then returned a pair of Maison Margiela Tabi Mary Janes from a woman after spending the night with her. This incident brought attention to a type of man known as the NYC Clout Guy, a twenty-something who idolizes models, name-drops celebrity acquaintances, and ghosts Tinder dates but occasionally swipes expensive items. One TikTok creator, Jean-Luc Lukunku, has gained fame for satirizing this phenomenon and creating humorous videos about it.

Lukunku, a musician and creative producer at GQ, first came across the Swiper when he was mistaken for him on Twitter. His TikTok videos resonated with people who recognized the Clout Guy character in their own lives. Lukunku’s intention was to create a web show with diverse characters who aspire to make it in the city, similar to shows like “Friends.” However, he decided to build a following through TikTok first.

The Clout Guy resonates with many because of the accessibility of fame in the era of social media. As Andy Warhol predicted, everyone can now be famous for 15 minutes. The rise of social media culture has made fame more attainable, causing many people to desire stardom or to feel connected to someone famous. This culture is not limited to residents of Soho; it has permeated society at large.

When it comes to fashion inspiration, Lukunku admires Lenny Kravitz, as well as the rock and roll stars of the ’70s such as Mick Jagger and Elton John. He finds inspiration from friends and brands he finds on TikTok. Lukunku admits to being part of the Dimes Square/Soho scene and has made friends with individuals who embody the Clout Guy persona. While his videos may depict exaggerated versions of himself, Lukunku maintains that he does not steal from stores or women, contrary to popular belief.

In conclusion, the NYC Clout Guy has become a recognizable figure due to his pursuit of social media fame and association with luxury items. Jean-Luc Lukunku’s satirical TikTok videos shed light on the absurdity of clout-chasing and provide humor for those who can relate to the phenomenon.

– GQ