Travel influencers have the ability to make us all feel FOMO with just one picture of whatever beautiful locale they happen to be staying in that week. It turns out, they also have the ability to make many people angry. That's just what one traveling couple known on Instagram as Positravelty has done.
The pair, Kody Workman and Kelly Castille, shared a pic from high above a gorgeous landscape in Laguna Humantay in the Peruvian Andes. However in the shot, Kody is holding Kelly off the side of a cliff.
They captioned the pic, "The world is waiting for you. Behind the masses of those that wish to watch you lead a quiet and sedentary life is an open, unlined canvas. We urge you to take a chance, to push past barriers of negativity and oppression of self-fulfillment and paint the picture of who YOU want to be. Never let yourself be beat down for living your life by those too afraid to live their own. There is a difference between risking your life and taking a risk at having one. We know which side we would rather be on, do you?"
Of the couple's 175,000 followers, many praised the pic, but just as many were furious over it. One said it was "just stupid beyond belief," while another noted, "I don't know how high that cliff is, but one slip of your boot, no matter how slight, and both of you will be at the bottom of it."
In response, the couple told Business Insider, "We love to push our creativity and play with perspectives. It is not dangerous. We would never risk our lives."
Some commenters pointed out how risky the photo is not for the couple but for their followers, writing, "It doesn't matter if you played with perspective and it wasn't dangerous for you. You really don't understand the power you hold, do you? Saying we all have personal responsibility is just a conscience-salving tool. You encourage others who DON'T know how to play with perspective, and someone will kill themselves by accident trying to emulate you. You're an influencer. You influence. The clue is in the title. Be inspirational by all means, but stop ratcheting up this pseudo-dangerous vibe before you encourage someone to kill themselves."
It's not the first time the couple has been under fire for this sort of thing either. In April, a very similar situation arose for them after they shared a photo of Workman holding Castille off the side of an infinity pool over the sheer drop in Bali.
Following that controversy, they fought back at critics saying they weren't "going to feed into the negativity of this." They explained, "Our account is about creativity, photography, kindness, perspective, and above all... positivity. Whether a photo does well or not, whether it is perceived one way or another, is irrelevant to us. We post what we love and what we believe showcases our happiness, our adventures, our creativity. This has become a bigger deal than we could have ever imagined and we, going forward, only wish to discuss positive things and the reality behind the photo."
You can follow Kody and Kelly here.