So Pewdiepie got in the news for calling another player the n-word during one of his streams. You know, I want to say I’m surprised, but I’m not. Pewdiepie has had plenty of bad press lately, and what’s up with his weird beard? (Sorry…it just looks kind of… mangled).
He said: “What a f***ing n*****! Geez! Oh my god! What the f***? Sorry, but what the f***?”
So… yeah. There are a lot of ramifications here, and lots of Youtubers are pretty upset too.
Youtube has had a lot of trouble recently. A lot of well-known YouTubers have been embroiled in fiascos due to their terrible behavior. I won’t name any of them because I don’t think we should be giving any attention to them, but a quick Google search will probably give you a lot of answers. Lots of people make a living from vlogging on Youtube, and not all of them are amazing people. Plus ads are becoming more and more common–some of them aren’t even skippable, so you have to sit through really boring ads over and over again.
Personally, I agree with the criticism of Pewdiepie. He is the biggest Youtuber in the world, with 57 million followers, and much of his audience consists of young children and teenagers. When they see someone they idolize and look up to set a bad example, some of them will think that it’s acceptable to do so. One indie game developer has insisted that other developers take measures to prevent Pewdiepie from playing their games. Others have laughed at this, saying that it’s better to have publicity from Pewdiepie than it is to make a failing game. And I think that’s what’s wrong with today’s world.
Companies shouldn’t be focused solely on profit. That’s not right. Sure, companies are made to sell stuff and earn money, but weren’t they started because someone believed in something?
People who try to shield him from criticism by saying that he’s just a Youtuber aren’t getting the message. We hold public figures to insane standards because they are idols and heroes for young children. Theoretically, they should be the best of us. And Pewdiepie, even though he’s “just a Youtuber,” is actually not “just a Youtuber.” He’s a major public figure and what he does affects not only himself but over 50 million people. And the funny thing is, he’s probably going to be safe from all of this backlash, and he’s going to keep his channel because he is profitable.
After the Wall Street Journal reported on Pewdiepie’s Nazi references earlier this year, a lot of huge advertisers decided to leave Youtube. It’d be nice if that only affected Pewdiepie, but it hurt smaller channels and a lot of big ones by cutting their earnings. And just when advertisers were starting to come back, this happens again.
It’s easy to dismiss this by saying, “Oh, he’s just joking,” or, “Oh, it’s just slang.” But the thing is, Pewdiepie isn’t even American. Maybe it would be slightly more forgivable if he were American because the word is actually used sometimes in America by black people. But Pewdiepie is Swedish, and he’s living in the UK, so he didn’t learn the n-word from racist neighbors or anyone else. The fact that THIS is the word he uses when he’s annoyed or angry or whatever means that he has used it so frequently it’s become part of his daily vocabulary. That sort of thing takes effort. And that speaks a lot about him as a person.
Personally, I think we all have a right to be disappointed with Pewdiepie. And now the discussion is currently turned to whether or not an indie game developer can prevent Pewdiepie from streaming himself playing their game. They had the video removed.
He also released an apology video earlier today, where he says:
“I’m really sorry if I offended, hurt or disappointed anyone with all of this. Being in the position I am, I should know better. I know I can’t keep messing up like this.
“I owe it to my audience and to myself to do better than this because I know I’m better than this.
“I really want to improve myself and better myself, not just for me, but for anyone who looks up to me or anyone who’s influenced by me. That’s how I want to move forward away from this.”
What do you guys think? How many second chances should this guy be given? Was it just an accident, or is it a big deal?