Why is PewDiePie still allowed on YouTube

What responsibility do YouTubers have?


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The two German YouTubers Fabian Siegismund and David Hain were also faced with the questions when they called a format in 2014 Win grove published on YouTube. Dressed in Nazi uniform, they wanted to establish a "new form of game journalism". The video was originally intended as an April Fool's joke, polarized the German games scene - and one year later won the German Web Video Award in the gaming category. The YouTuber JuliensBlog fared differently: He was convicted of sedition last year because he said in a video that one should "gass the bastards". Meant were the members of the train drivers' union GDL who had called a strike. The court was of the opinion that the limits of satire had been exceeded here.

PewDiePie does not yet have to fear any legal consequences. YouTube also found that the clips concerned did not violate the guidelines (however, the platform deactivated the advertising revenue in one of the posts). The Swede has meanwhile said that he "in no way" supports anti-Semites and neo-Nazis. And in fact, with the exception of the clips mentioned, in recent years he was not known for flirting with Nazi symbolism and rhetoric. Without being 100 percent certain, one could make his apology for him. What does not protect him from criticism: The clips mentioned were clicked millions of times before they were deleted again, and with a fan base of 53 million people, not a few of them underage, he should be aware of his responsibility.

"The children and young people could not have the historical context that Kjellberg assumes," writes the IT portal Techcrunch. In other words: PewDiePie may package Nazi videos as a joke, but not every viewer may understand why it is satire and why it could be problematic to use the symbolism. The pro-Israel lobby organization Anti-Defamation League believes that a video in which people hold a poster with "Death to all Jews" in front of the camera could bring right thought into the mainstream, even if it was actually intended very differently.

Neo-Nazi sites appropriate PewDiePie as a supporter

The debate about PewDiePie is also interesting in view of the current political and social developments. In terms of how right-wing, nationalist and populist actors try to co-opt content. An American neo-Nazi website currently has a banner with the portrait of Kjellberg and the subheading "The World's # 1 PewDiePie fansite". In a recent post, they attack both Disney and the" Jewish-sounding "reporters of the Wall Street Journal at.

It is an example of the ways propaganda can now take on the Internet and how the net-savvy Alt-Right movement works in the USA. Even if one shouldn't fool the viewers on YouTube or deny them media competence, it is not completely unrealistic to believe that young PewDiePie fans could come into contact with right-wing ideas for the first time through such actions.

In the best case scenario, Felix Kjellberg should learn from the matter. Not because it costs him respect among his loyal fans. But hard cash: the collaborations with both Disney and YouTube's payment portal Red were certainly worth more than a few tasteless and poorly thought out Nazigags.