Hype House is currently under fire for allegedly "scamming" fans with a new merch promotion.

On Tuesday, the LA-based TikTok collective released their new "Hype" Chain with co-founder Thomas Petrou advertising the necklace as a "free" product on his own Instagram. Not only that, but on the merch website, Hype House even went so far as to claim that the chains were worth $100 and say that fans would only be able to get one chain per order โ€” though "if you want multiple free chains, make multiple orders."

However, it didn't take long for eager fans to conclude that something strange was afoot when it came to the $20 shipping and handling cost โ€” an unusually high rate for a package of that size. Plus, as noted by Twitter user @DefNoodles, the same $20 shipping cost was applied to different mailing addresses in Miami, NYC, and even the nearby LA area when "mailing chain of similar weight can cost as low as $3.80, according to USPS."

"This is the Free + shipping scheme where the product costs wholesale @ $1.50 and they charge for it in the shipping SO IT NOT FREE," YouTuber Vice Versa wrote. "Oldest [e-commerce] game in the book."

Meanwhile, others took more issue with who the underhanded promotion was aimed at, with many accusing Petrou and the rest of the Hype House crew of taking advantage of their "young, naive" fanbase.

"The thing that bothers me about this hype house chain scam is that Thomas knows the hype house has a younger audience, so he knew they'd buy into the whole 'it's free' scenario," user @frenchxxy added. "He's literally manipulating them. Sketchy as hell if u ask me."

That said, this isn't the first time popular influencers have allegedly attempted to pull a similar stunt. Last September, Jake Paul faced criticism for his own "free" chain which came with an extra $14 in shipping costs. Additionally, according to Insider, Paul also promised that buyers would be entered into a competition to meet him โ€” though his vlog about the topic was subsequently deleted and the issue was never brought up again.

Petrou and Hype House have yet to comment.

Photo via Getty

You May Also Like
Paper People 2020

PAPER People: @nmillz1

Creative direction by Agusta Yr / Styling by Erika Golcher