If, for the past several months, it seemed as though Kanye West’s increasingly bizarre behavior was building toward something, it turns out that might very well be the truth. According to Rolling Stone, sources close to Kanye say he’s filed a bunch of trademark applications that would allow him to launch his own, self-contained mini-city. Fittingly, he’s apparently planning to call it the “Yecosystem”; it’ll have its own stores selling Kanye-branded food and beverages. He plans to have the first campus up-and-running by the end of the year and open more across the country.
If any of this sounds familiar, it should. This is both the “company town” business model that was literally made illegal by the same round of legislation during the Industrial Revolution that ended the practice of using scrip and child labor. It also very much sounds like a corporate version of those cult communes they’ve made a bunch of documentaries about — which seems very much in line with the rhetoric he’s been espousing over the past half decade (including very recently) as well as his plans of building “dome homes” in 2019.
Among the trademarks filed are names like Yzyverse, Yxyverse, and Yeezyverse. He also apparently wants to add reproductive healthcare, children’s education, and “biological cloning” as services provided under the Yecosystem umbrella. There’s more information about it in the full Rolling Stone article, but let’s be real here: It sounds very much like Kanye’s inching that much closer to full-blown cult leader status. Just don’t drink the Kool-Aid.