After members of the Hype House were slammed online for continuing to host major gatherings amid the current coronavirus pandemic, Thomas Petrou has spoken out and explained exactly why influencers will not stop partying despite California’s recommendation that residents avoid prolonged, unmasked contact with those outside of their homes.

“Our jobs are to entertain people,” the Hype House cofounder recently told The New York Times. “We live with groups of people, and we are all intertwined for work. We can’t put our entire lives on hold for a year and not make any money.”

As fans know, Thomas isn’t only social media star who spoke out about celebrating during the pandemic. Yep, his comments came a few days after Jake Paul told Insider that he’s “not gonna sit around and not live his life.” For those who missed it, the YouTuber came under major fire for his massive party. News reports even claimed that the mayor of Calabasas, CA — Alicia Weintraub — was “outraged” after a video went viral from the 23-year-old’s gathering hosted at the Team 10 house.

Sources even reported that some stars have allegedly tested positive for COVID-19 following the celebrations. On July 28, comedian Elijah Daniel spoke out and begged influencers to stop attending parties. He also alleged that “a lot of influencers” have caught the disease. Twitter account Def Noodles also alleged in a lengthy thread on August 1 that multiple sources reached out to him and said, “Some Hype House and Sway House members may allegedly have COVID, according to person with knowledge of situation who wants to remain anonymous.”

Thomas has since denied these allegations and claimed that fellow internet star Nikita Dragun had “someone come test people at the house and they all came back negative,” after she threw two birthday parties at the Hype House. Def Noodles even posted screenshots of DM conversations with members of both the Hype and Sway House, in which he asked them if the allegations were true. Members of the two TikTok influencer squads have not publicly responded to him and have stayed quiet about the entire situation.

The World Health Organization has reported that more than 19,300,000 people have contracted coronavirus so far. For those who missed it, medical professionals have called for “social distancing” to prevent further spreading of the illness, which is defined as “trying to keep yourself away from other people, especially large crowds.” Because of this many events, concerts, award shows, conventions and festivals have been canceled, including all Broadway plays and sports games. People are urged to stay indoors, avoid public places and isolate themselves during this time. The disease has resulted in more than 718,000 deaths and has infected people in 213 countries. 12,400,000 people have recovered.

Love J-14? Be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel for fun, exclusive videos with your favorite stars.