You might know Brittany Broski and Sarah Schauer from their presence on various social media platforms. Their intensely online existence spans across platforms such as Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and even as far back as Vine. They’re now extending into the podcasting sphere, with a new addition to their repertoires: “Violating Community Guidelines.”
Brittany Broski (whose real name is Brittany Tomlinson) is a 24-year-old originally from Dallas, Texas. Tomlinson might look and sound familiar — she was known as ‘Kombucha girl’ for a while, due to a TikTok of her taste-testing the drink, and her very mixed emotions that came along with it (“you know what, no … well!”). Her TikTok inspired countless memes and remakes in 2019-2020. But Tomlinson has more than proven she’s not just a one-hit-wonder. Her content on TikTok seems to have emerged at just the right time to penetrate the “weird girl” market. It seems she reflects the funniest, loudest, most honest parts of many young women, and shares it all with zero filters to her followers.
Her honesty — from crude toilet humor to transparent crippling insecurity — resonates with so many. In the wake of her TikTok account’s massive success (with 6.6 million followers to date on her main account), she eventually branched out to YouTube. Videos like “Kombucha Taste Test Pt. 2” piggy-backed off her success on the short-form platform, providing a gateway to longer content to engage further with her audience. Her content is as diverse as her personality. In one video she’s attempting drag makeup with Trixie Mattel, in another she’s giving her bedroom a makeover, and in another, she’s deep diving into art history (or “FART History,” to stay on brand). She’s also massively popular on Instagram, with 904,000 followers to date. Whatever she puts out, her fans are here for it.
Sarah Schauer describes herself on her website as a “former Viner, current copywriter, amateur Youtuber, and extremely online person.” The 28-year-old’s go-to platform is Twitter, where they have amassed over 500,000 followers, but they also have a notable presence on TikTok (1.9 million followers) and YouTube (529,000 subscribers). Schauer’s YouTube channel is filled with a mix of reaction videos (for example, bizarre Zillow listings) and discussions of trending topics (like “Cheugy” and what it means, and videos titled “Are the Straights OK??”). Just like in her old Vines, her delivery in these videos is often sarcastic and quick-witted, making them fast-paced and engaging experiences.
The two influencers also often collaborate on YouTube videos, made easier by the fact that they live together. The videos they record together are arguably some of their best work. When Schauer’s drier, witty sense of humor combines with Tomlinson’s louder, more chaotic energy in a single space, it’s always a delight to observe. They are internet personas through and through, qualified through years of experience to speak on all manners of niche topics online.
The two of them together is a perfect storm for an engaging podcast. Their newest online venture, “Violating Community Guidelines,” is a podcast that explores “all corners of the wild and wacky web.” They’ve both been on the internet for most of their lives and have plenty to say. Their debut episode covered Facebook Marketplace, which might seem an odd choice for a first episode, but it’s an entertaining deep dive into the weirdest things strangers list for sale on the internet and sets a precedent for the kind of subjects they’ll canvas in the future on their show. Schauer explained in the premiere episode that both hosts have been talking about starting a podcast together for a while and wanted it to be something that they could “rant on and on about.” They both expressed a mutual love and hate for the internet — Tomlinson said, “I feel like for better or for worse, I know a lot about it … [It’s] both my downfall and the reason why both of us have careers.” Other episodes of “Violating Community Guidelines” cover AI Influencers (such as Lil Miquela), furries, Creepypastas and fan fiction. Their banter throughout is a fascinating combination of informative discussion and hilarious back-and-forth.
In the most recent episode discussing fan fiction, Tomlinson took a front seat and explained the ins and outs of the subject matter to Schauer, who was less informed on the topic. Tomlinson grew up on Tumblr and Wattpad, so she had a deeper understanding of the nuances of the online phenomenon. Schauer would occasionally interject with questions from the perspective of an outsider, and Tomlinson explained the topic that is both niche and near-and-dear to her heart to her co-host. In their episode on LinkedIn influencers, Schauer had more expertise. They worked as a copywriter for LinkedIn for some time, so they had more of an insight into the platform itself. The two social media stars share their experiences in a casual and conversational way that makes “Violating Community Guidelines” easy to follow, and even easier to binge.
At its core, it’s clear the show is built on the hosts’ genuine friendship and respect for one another and their unique life experiences. Schauer has praised Tomlinson on their Twitter, tweeting “brittany is so insanely talented i cant even tell y’all. holy f*ck dude!!!” followed by “dude this woman is a f*cking star. in every single way.” Similarly supportive, Tomlinson, who is straight, regularly makes space on “Violating Community Guidelines” (and in their collaborative videos) for Schauer to speak on queer issues, queer identity and their coming out story. It’s heart-warming to listen to two people succeeding at the same time, eager to support one another, all while making content they love.
Both Schauer and Tomlinson’s videos on YouTube and TikTok are designed to keep Gen Z’s fleeting attention, so they keep the jokes light. But in a podcast format, with episodes running for over an hour each, they have much more space to move. They’re able to delve deeper into nuanced topics like unattainable beauty standards on social media and engage meaningfully with a variety of online spaces in what becomes a fascinating commentary on living life online. They’re gifted storytellers and conversationalists, and “Violating Community Guidelines” is yet another avenue for them to share stories, connect with their audiences and spread joy.
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