Why People Are Trying To Ban PewDiePie From YouTube
Looks like 93 million subscribers *can* be wrong. A change.org petition to ban YouTube’s top channel, PewDiePie, has reached nearly 75 thousand signatures because of the content creator’s blatant racism.
PewDiePie, aka 29-year-old Swede Felix Kjellberg, is being called a white supremacist in the petition both for his past actions and for emboldening his fans to parrot his warped ideologies. It’s been known that Felix is the worst. Just a few of the examples from this petition include him using the n-word and hiring others to do so as well, paying Indian men to hold signs spelling out “death to all Jews,” making a video with a man in a Jesus costume that holds up a sign saying “Hitler did absolutely nothing wrong,” and repeatedly using images of Leslie Jones to represent the gorilla Harambe. Just typing all of that made me feel yucky, imagine actually supporting this sh*t. Anyway, he’s also performed the Nazi heil salute, promoted anti-Semitic videos, and purposefully attributed photos of famous black people with the wrong names.
Yeah, dude. You’re racist.
His fans claim that detractors just don’t understand Felix’s humor. I claim that his fans are either thirsty tweens, grown-*ss people acting like thirsty tweens, other racists, or gamers that are trying to convince themselves they look more like Felix than they look like the Babadook. Like, just because PewDiePie has a nice face for a dude who decided that “internet troll” and “full-time gamer” were acceptable career options doesn’t mean that he’s not a racist. There are tons of hot guys on YouTube that don’t make rape jokes, PSA.
To be honest, the only question we had when we saw this petition was, “Why now?” The petition was actually created in response to the New Zealand mosque shooting last month, which saw one white supremacist murder fifty people and injure fifty others at two mosques during Friday Prayer. The mass murderer live streamed the first attack, shouting “subscribe to PewDiePie” before killing innocent worshippers. Subscribers have tried to push accountability off of Felix by pointing towards the deep-web “subscribe to PewDiePie” meme as the reason for the quote, attributing its use to the shooter’s cache of memes within his manifesto. Writing off a mass shooter’s direct reference to Felix’s channel as one in a series of memes overlooks that his affinity for 4chan memes and trolling are part of a deep-web culture that has normalized the white supremacist behaviors PewDiePie exemplifies.
Making things more complicated is the rolling waves of support Felix has seen in his battle to remain the most-subscribed creator on YouTube as his title is regularly threatened by Indian music company T-Series. Other creators see this as a battle between an individual and a corporation in a community that needs to remain ruled by independent creators and have promoted his channel to support that cause, completely ignoring his problematic content and therefore condoning it.
The gaming company Campo Anto has attempted to remove any PewDiePie streams featuring their content, Disney terminated their contracts with Felix, and as of 2017, YouTube stopped considering his content “brand safe,” but petition creator Maria Ruiz wants more action to be taken to stop the gaming star. While it’s highly unlikely that YouTube will be able to remove Felix (considering they saw no grounds to remove Logan Paul for posting footage of a suicide victim on their platform), the guy needs to be demonetized *yesterday*. Do better, YouTube. Be better.