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Youtuber faces criticism

Quinn Cunningham

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Top Youtuber Felix Kjellberg, known on Youtube as PewDiePie, recently had piece written about him by the Wall Street Journal (WSJ). The piece pointed out a recent string of what they called anti-semetic imagery and jokes in Kjellberg’s videos. The WSJ claimed that Kjellberg, with 53 million subscribers, is normalizing hateful beliefs.

Soon after, Disney owned, Maker Studios, severed ties with Kjellberg, and Youtube cancelled an upcoming series called “Scare PewDiePie Season 2 ” and removed him from their premier advertising program: Google Preferred. In a recent video, Kjellberg responded by stating that while he understands why people were offended by his jokes, they were done not to incite hate but as satire to expose the hypocrisies of different websites and Youtube policies. The controversy has brought to light a conversation about what is acceptable as humor on the internet.

The tricky part about the internet and things like Youtube is that many times it is children that are watching. Children are widely impressionable and can have their realities shaped by what they view on the internet. For this reason, I do understand much of the concern about the influence of Youtubers spreading bad of hateful messages. On the other hand, claiming someone is a racist of anti-semite is not a small thing. To do so, one must have a great deal of evidence and character judgement. PewDiePie’s jokes were certainly done in poor taste and fashion.

However, I don’t believe he instantly deserves the label “racist” or “anti-semetic.” My main reasoning is that many other top Youtubers including h3h3 Productions, Casey Neistat, and Philip DeFranco state that they known Kjellberg personally, and he is not hateful or racist. People who know him best have the most informed idea of what kind of person he is.

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Quinn Cunningham, News Editor

Senior Quinn Cunningham is a news editor and has served on staff since 2017.

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Youtuber faces criticism