The world highest paid Youtuber, Pewdiepie, has been under fire again for using a racial slur during an online gaming stream. The Swedish 27 year old named Felix Kjellberg, could be heard using the racial slur while he was streaming Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds. Pewdiepie has over 57 million subscribers on Youtube, and gained this following by recording himself playing games and providing a commentary for his audience.
During the livestream, Pewdiepie uttered “What a f***ing n*****! Geez! Oh My god. What the f***? Sorry, but what the f***?”
This was followed by him laughing off his choice of words (realising his mistake), and said “I don’t mean that in a bad [way].”
To add insult to injury, this isn’t the first time Pewdiepie has been in the public eye under a negative pretense. Earlier this year Disney terminated it’s partnership with him following an anti-semitic video he had created using the popular site Fiverr.
Sean Vanaman, a Firewatch developer said “We’re filing a DMCA takedown of Pewdiepie’s Firewatch content and any future Campo Santo Games.” Vanaman said on Twitter.
“I am sick of this child getting more and more chances to make money off of what we make,” Sean continued.
“He’s worse than a closeted racist: he’s a propagator of despicable garbage that does real damage to the culture around this industry.
“Freedom of speech is freedom of prosecution. His stream is not commentary, it is ad growth for his brand. Our game on his channel = endorsement.”
However Sean did admit that they’ve indirectly profited from Pewdiepie’s publicity, however he stated that they’re not proud of this benefit.
So far, Pewdiepie has not commented on the issue however his fanbase has been clearly divided between innocent and guilty. Some of his fans have been defending him, saying he didn’t mean it in a bad way, as well as highlighting some of his charitable contributions in the past. Others claim whether or not it was a mistake, having such a large audience means there is a certain amount of responsibility involved and should mean a greater attention to detail should be taken when broadcasting live online.
Whether this was an innocent mistake or not, due to his previous anti-semitic remarks and twitter comments resulting in a ban about joining Isis makes many people dubious about any apology. Furthermore Pewdiepie’s fan base is of a younger generation, and encouraging racial slurs and offensive language shouldn’t be tolerated at all.
So far the only action that has happened, is Pewdiepie’s Let’s Play series involving content from Firewatch has been removed from Youtube. It’s not clear if this was a result of a DMCA takedown, or was a damage limitation from Pewdiepie himself.