- A man posted a video showing an income-ranking spreadsheet he said his friends used to plan vacations.
- The lowest earner on the spreadsheet, nicknamed “Broke Bobby,” makes $US125,000 ($AU175,110).
- The video went viral, and “Broke Bobby” trended on Twitter. Critics called the video “out of touch.”
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A man’s TikTok sharing his friend group’s income-ranking vacation-planning spreadsheet went viral, particularly for assigning the moniker “Broke Bobby” to someone who the man said makes $US125,000 ($AU175,110) as an accountant.
The video, uploaded on Instagram Reels on Tuesday by Tom Cruz, was shared widely on Twitter, leading to “Broke Bobby” trending on Wednesday and Thursday.
The video was also uploaded on Cruz’s TikTok account, which has over 819,000 followers. Cruz told Insider the video was removed from the app. TikTok told Insider it did not remove the video.
“So a few years ago, me and my friends started making this spreadsheet breaking down our incomes and availability for travel, and it looks like this,” Cruz says in the video.
The spreadsheet ranks friends who make $US125,000 ($AU175,110) to $US5 ($AU7) million annually and indexes their paid time off, vacation budget, relationship status, whether they’re willing to travel to “3rd World Destinations,” and whether they’re a “degenerate gambler.”
In the caption, Cruz called it a “Forbes Friend list,” a play on the outlet’s billionaires list.
Cruz’s social-media profiles indicate he’s a real-estate investor with over 380 rental properties. A LinkedIn profile that appears to belong to Cruz says he’s based in North Carolina. His Instagram bio describes him as a “serial entrepreneur,” and his Linktree pointed to a Section 8 real-estate video course and a real-estate investing community on Discord.
The “Broke Bobby” video went viral on Twitter after a user shared it with the caption “What in the wealth is this.” It amassed 2.5 million views in less than one day.
Cruz elaborated on the ‘Forbes Friend list’ in further videos
Cruz posted a video on TikTok on Wednesday night answering questions about the original video.
Cruz said the person who’s planning the vacation comes up with the activities and a budget in addition to booking transportation like a private jet if necessary. They then invite those whose vacation budget aligns with the trip so they don’t “hurt any feelings,” he said.
According to Cruz, “Broke Bobby” works as an accountant.
In another video, he showed a spreadsheet of the “bottom 10 income earners” in his friend group, who, Cruz said, call themselves the “Welfare 10.” According to Cruz’s comments on the video, it is not satire.
Cruz’s video generated discourse on Twitter
Twitter’s public count suggested there were over 11,000 tweets associated with “Broke Bobby” by midday Thursday.
Many people said the video was “out of touch” and made memes about Bobby and other elements of the spreadsheet.
According to census data, “Broke Bobby” makes more than double the 2019 real median earnings for men who worked full time year-round, $US57,456 ($AU80,489). The median household income was $US68,703 ($AU96,244) in 2019.
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In one video about the spreadsheets, Cruz said that he didn’t care about his friends’ incomes but that the information was helpful in planning outings. He also said in tweets that he and his friends “all joke about each other’s income” and that they all contribute their own information to the spreadsheet.
Cruz declined Insider’s interview request, saying he was “slammed busy this month.” He did not comment on the criticism.