In context: Squid Game has become the biggest TV show of the year, but one person who's not too happy about its success is streamer Lydia Ellery. The Yogscast member has been using the name 'SquidGame' and 'SquidGaming' for over a decade, but that's not stopped fans of Netflix's series bombarding her with abuse. Her handle has also cost Ellery two presenting jobs because of its association with the Korean smash.
The BBC reports that UK-based Ellery, 32, has been on YouTube, Twitch, and Instagram for 11 years as SquidGame, and uses SquidGaming on Twitter. "For me it was just a silly name I thought up on the spot," she said. "My friends called me squid because it rhymes with lid, and my name is Lydia."
But the phenomenon that is the Squid Game TV show, which was viewed by 142 million people globally in its first four weeks, has brought unwanted attention to Ellery.
"I started getting abusive messages from people. People were getting angry with me because they were mega fans [...] and thought I took the account from the show," she told the BBC. "I had to turn off notifications on my Instagram because it was just constant. My phone has been flooded."
People also started reporting Ellery's Instagram account and trying to access it. "I keep getting emails from people trying to log in. It's been really frustrating," she said. Her account was even banned temporarily.
In addition to the hateful messages and attempted hacks on her accounts, the streamer has also lost work because of the name she chose many years ago. "I've lost two amazing presenting opportunities because people don't want to hire me with my 'squid game' handle. This is really getting me down now," she tweeted. "I guess it's the connotations of the show - it's a very violent show, maybe it's that?"
The issue has become so bad that Ellery is now considering changing the brand name she's been building for over a decade, even though it's not something she wants to do. "If you search for me and my brand, which I've had for over ten years [...] all you get is the TV show."
While the second season of Squid Game hasn't yet officially been announced by Netflix, it'll almost certainly happen at some point, so Ellery will likely be dealing with this problem of association for some time yet.