Felix “PewDiePie” Kjellberg has issued a response regarding the recent stories surrounding his anti-semitic joke, his lost advertisement revenue and the cancellation of his YouTube Red show. He apologizes for the joke, and he tears into the media. Here’s the video, then we’ll play catch up:
In case you’ve managed to keep clear of the drama surrounding Pewdiepie, here’s the rundown. Pewdiepie made a video making fun of Fiverr, the site where you can pay people small amounts of money for all sorts of odd jobs. He paid two Indian men to hold up a sign that read “Death to All Jews.” They did. He has since removed the video.
Weeks later, The Wall Street Journal ran a story titled “Disney Severs Ties With YouTube Star PewDiePie After Anti-Semitic Posts.” The subtitle for that story, written by WSJ, was “Move came after the Journal asked about videos in which he included anti-Semitic jokes or Nazi imagery.”
Today, we have the response video from Pewdiepie above. The video features a few things. Pewdiepie apologizes for the anti-semitic jokes. He points viewers to a Tumblr post where he offers an official statement on the matter. That statement went up on February 12, 2017. That statement essentially announces that Pewdiepie does not support “hateful attitudes,” though it does not include an apology.
He apologizes in the video. He thanks the community for their support through teary eyes. Then Pewdiepie turns to the media.
Pewdiepie vs. the media
At the start of the video, he hits Vanity Fair for covering him in 2013. He paints them, and the sites that cover him today (waves) as “old school media.” The video, starting there and picking up after his apology, is framed with a me vs. them mentality. At one point he says “old school media does not like internet personalities because they’re scared of us.”
He turns his focus towards The Wall Street Journal‘s article referenced above, labeling it as an attack against him based on the writers’ personal agendas. The Wall Street Journal gathered evidence and provided it to Disney and YouTube.
Without casting judgement on Pewdiepie or The Wall Street Journal, jokes have consequences. Pewdiepie’s under an international spotlight, so his consequences are larger. I highly doubt this drama will affect his lifestyle, though I can’t imagine having the world’s attention. Granted, he does have more than 50,000,000 subscribers, so he’s used to it.