YouTube’s biggest star has claimed that he’s dropping some of the edgy humour he’s known for after a change in YouTube’s advertiser rules.
While PewDiePie has made claims before that turn out to be false, in a new video he seems to insist that a switch to more family friendly content is actually on the cards.
“No more swearing, no more sexual jokes and definitely no more Hitler jokes,” he said. “I wish I was joking. I’m not. It seems that YouTube has made some changes, and about a third of my videos have become demonetised.
“I’m going to have to be family friendly from now on so I don’t go homeless. I love money too much.”
He says that YouTube has altered its advertisement policies, which would certainly be consistent with recent events. As a result, PewDiePie’s content will have to clean up if he is to maintain his revenue levels.
Over the weekend PewDiePie, who was recently dropped by Disney’s Maker Studios and has seen his YouTube privileges eroded, is making the jump to Twitch. His new weekly show, Best Club, debuted at the weekend.
The announcement was made in a video last week where PewDiePie lamented the collapsing advertising scene on YouTube – and also added to the chorus of YouTubers attacking The Wall Street Journal (albeit with tongue firmly in cheek) and lamented the number of creators making Minecraft videos.
Buried among his frivolity, however, PewDiePie does make some serious points. He acknowledges that advertisers absolutely would not want to be associated with racist content, but argues that any problem content that does exist on YouTube has been massively overblown by – yes, you guessed it – the media. He also argues for the benefit of YouTube’s open platform, claiming it is this freedom which differentiates it from the controlled and commercial world of TV.
Again, however, PewDiePie downplays the content which got him into this controversy in the first place. And perhaps there lays the real problem.
It was reported last month that a growing list of major global brands are withdrawing their advertising spend on YouTube due to the fear of being associated with hate speech.
The Google-owned company has been rocked in recent weeks by the increased awareness of the racist hate speech that has become alarmingly common among some of its top stars. Gaming has been hard hit by controversies including the likes of PewDiePie and JonTron, although of course the problem of games pundits espousing extreme right wing views has been around for some time.