Billie Eilish Stopped Reading Instagram Comments Because They Were "Ruining" Her Life

Billie Eilish and her brother Finneas O'Connell spoke candidly about internet trolls during an interview with BBC Breakfast

By Elyse Dupre Feb 18, 2020 3:49 PMTags
Billie Eilish, Finneas OConnell, 2020 Oscars, Academy AwardsVALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images

Billie Eilish is getting honest about internet trolls.

The 18-year-old singer and her brother, Finneas O'Connell, opened up about the topic during a new interview with BBC Breakfast.

When Louise Minchin asked the five-time Grammy winner if she still read everything posted on Instagram, the "bad guy" star revealed she'd "stopped, like, two days ago. "

"I stopped reading comments fully," Eilish said, later explaining "it was ruining my life."

She then reflected on the hate she's received from followers.

"It's weird," Eilish continued. "Like, the cooler the things you get to do are, the more people hate you. It's crazy."

When asked about a possible solution, Eilish said she didn't have an answer.

"I don't know, dude. It's crazy," she added. "Cancel culture is insane. I mean, that's not what has been happening. It's just been, like, just the internet is a bunch of trolls, you know? And it's, like, the problem is a lot of it is really funny. I think that's the issue—that's why nobody really stops because it's funny."

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O'Connell also blamed a "lack of accountability." 

"I think even if it's your own face and your profile picture and it's your own name, it's still—everybody is much braver behind a cell phone screen than they would be if they walked down the street, you know?" he said. "It's kind of crazy, even when you interact with people."

In addition, Eilish said people are willing to say "anything for a joke" and to "make somebody laugh."

"I've experienced that back in, you know, growing up, I'd say things that I thought people would laugh at and then later I realized, like, that wasn't cool to say," she said.

O'Connell also suggested some may feel like they have "no public voice" and that it can seem "so immeasurable in the equality scale of whose voice is louder."

"You feel like your voice is very quiet—even though on platforms like Twitter and Instagram it can reach them directly," he said. "So I think you might see someone who's like a famous celebrity and you might think, 'Sticks and stones—nothing I can say is going to actually be, you know, potent to them.' But it all is. It's all very equal online."

In fact, Eilish said it's "way worse than it's ever been right now." 

"It's insane that I even have been reading comments up until this point. I should have stopped long ago," she said. "It's just the problem is I've always wanted to stay in touch with the fans and keep talking to them and, like, people have ruined that for me."

She also agreed this has "ruined it for them," which "sucks." Still, she tries to engage in other ways.

"I still try to like, you know, like fan posts or whatever and especially, like, you know, if I see fans anywhere, like, I just want to talk to them and, like, you know, be around them because they're people," she said. "Like, they're me....They're like other me's. So, they're like friends of mine. But yeah, the internet is ruining my life. So, I turned it off."

To watch more of the duo's interview, including their thoughts on their new Bond theme song, check out BBC Breakfast's interview.