YouTube sensation Felix “PewDiePie” Kjellberg outraged many of his fans this week when he announced that he would be donating $50,000 to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), a pro-censorship organization that regularly targets dissidents for Orwellian censorship on Big Tech platforms.
Just two days later, PewDiePie announced that he is rescinding the donation. He admitted his ignorance about the organization in a YouTube video published on Thursday and thanked his fans for helping him understand more about the insidious nature of the ADL.
“I made the mistake of picking a charity that I was advised instead of picking a charity that I’m personally passionate about, which is 100 percent my fault,” he said of his initial decision to give to the ADL.
“Usually when I pick a charity, I take my time, I find a charity that I’m really excited about and actually passionate to donate to, so when I uploaded the video talking about the charity, it was very brief, and people could tell something was off,” PewDiePie explained while laughing.
“To be fair, I saw it as an opportunity to put an end to these alt-right claims that have been thrown against me. It wasn’t to try and clear my name or save grace. If it was, I would have done it years ago, but after the Christchurch tragedy, I felt a responsibility to do something about it because it’s no longer just about me. It affected other people in a way, and I’m not okay with that,” PewDiePie said explaining his motives.
PewDiePie said that he announced the ADL donation with noble intentions, but the backlash from his fans helped him to see the error of his ways.
“I’ve struggled to figure out how to do that, but this was not the right way to go about it,” PewDiePie said. “I knew it wasn’t perfect, but I also didn’t know a lot of things that surfaced throughout this whole thing about the charity that doesn’t fit at all, so I understand why people had concerns about it, and these are things that I would have known myself if I had just taken my time.”
“This whole thing was planned during my wedding, and the honeymoon, and 100 million was coming up as well so it was all very rushed. It really doesn’t feel genuine for me to proceed with a donation at this point, and I instead want to actually do take my time, keep the intent that I had, but just doing it with the right charity and doing it properly,” he concluded before apologizing for the entire situation.
PewDiePie’s fans were incensed for his ADL donation because the organization had targeted him in the past, leading a hate campaign against PewDieDie that resulted in him being dropped by Disney back in 2017.
“ADL commends Disney’s decision to sever ties with PewDiePie following his posting of videos on YouTube containing swastikas and other anti-Semitic content,” ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt said in 2017. “This clearly crosses a line, but is becoming all-too commonplace on social media.”
The ADL also proudly works with tech monopolies to devise new ways to censor content, as the Big Brother crackdown kicks into high gear heading into the 2020 presidential election.
“We work with Google on using AI to try and interrupt cyber-hate before it happens,” Greenblatt told the Council on Foreign Relations earlier this year.
“So there are different ways [Facebook] can tweak their algorithms and adjust their products so they think not only about free speech… but protect the user’s right to not be harassed or hated,” he added.
“There is a gap in the legal regime. There are techniques that extremists have used online to terrorize Jews and other people like doxing, and swatting and different forms of cyberbullying that are not covered by existing laws and need to be,” Greenblatt concluded, making it clear that his organization’s ultimate goal is destruction of the Bill of Rights and Constitution.
The mainstream media is outraged at PewDiePie for listening to his fans and withdrawing the ADL donation.
Fake news artist Ben Collins whined about it in a Twitter post, claiming that YouTube is abetting extremism because they gave him a gift for amassing 100 million subscribers.
PewDiePie announced he was withdrawing a $50,000 donation to the Anti-Defamation League because of fan backlash while unboxing a gift sent from @YouTube itself.
The money was donated by the app @Honey.
Extremism abetted by Silicon Valley at each turn.https://t.co/uKL4KYgqSp
— Ben Collins (@oneunderscore__) September 12, 2019
The left-wing consumer terrorism organization Sleeping Giants claims that PewDiePie listened to “anti-Semitic trolls” when making his decision.
Let’s be honest with what happened here. PewDiePie has a significant number of anti-Semitic trolls that follow him that made a lot of noise when he tried to PR his way out of his past transgressions. He listened to them. https://t.co/yVLyLzC620
— Sleeping Giants (@slpng_giants) September 12, 2019
Mashable tech reporter Matt Binder said that PewDiePie’s fan base is racist, and said without providing evidence that the video blogger has been guilty of anti-Semitism in the past.
a good way to move past your previous instances of antisemitism is to backtrack on your publicly announced donation to the ADL meant to explicitly do that because your racist fans got mad at you https://t.co/zpjMmIrLSq
— Matt Binder (@MattBinder) September 12, 2019
The fake news backlash isn’t likely to hurt PewDiePie’s popularity, as his fans understand that he listens to them and respects their perspectives in light of his decision to rescind the ADL donation.
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