The owner of Youtube’s number 1 channel, Pewdiepie, recently revealed that he planned on deleting his channel once he hit 50 million subscribers. He received international media attention as his follower count quickly rose and passed the milestone, at which point he deleted a different channel of his, not his main one. It was a classic bait-and-switch that was written off as a publicity stunt, but Pewdiepie recently revealed that he had motivations beyond that.
When Pewdiepie and other Youtubers started having some issues with their channels, like people being automatically unsubscribed, or the “Recommended” feed being filled with gimmicky fake prank videos instead of the channels that people had subscribed to, he made several videos to bring attention to it. Some called him out for whining, but Pewpiedie’s intentions were to give a voice to smaller channels that may not have the same reach that he does.
“What the media didn’t understand about the deletion video is that I wasn’t complaining just for me… I thought I was standing up for, not just myself, but for everyone else on the platform.” – PewDiePie
He used this as an opportunity to criticize the media for how they had been covering him, for example taking clips out of context or trying to make him look bad. For example, he claimed that Youtube was making it harder to find his channel for fans because he’s white. Pewdiepie said that was clearly in jest, but the media ran with it, labeling him a white-supremacist, to which he responded by dressing up as a Nazi soldier and watching videos of Hitler.
“I don’t hate the media. Not all of them. Some of them. Most of them.” – PewDiePie
Pewdiepie was also annoyed that not a single media outlet had covered the fact that himself and some of his fellow Youtubers were able to raise 1.3 million dollars for charity. He pointed out the fact that the media were quick to cover his tonque-in-cheek comments as if they were fact, but ignores anything positive if it doesn’t fit their narrative.
“I made this other video that was very articulate… But nobody talked about that video, they just took the first video which was half satire, half comedy, and they just took pieces out of that and it was ridiculous.” – PewDiePie
In addition to raising 1.3 million for (RED), an aids charity, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation matched another $1,000,000, and Youtube themselves donated $100,000, so maybe they’re not on Pewdiepie’s hitlist anymore.
He says that he has seriously considered deleting his channel in the past, but couldn’t aire these grievances on the actual video where he deleted the “channel” because it had to be funny otherwise people would turn on him for his prank.