Report: Disney Cuts Pewdiepie Deal Following Anti-Semitic Videos

Spokesperson says YouTube star went too far with provocative videos.

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Disney has reportedly cut ties with popular YouTube streamer Felix Kjellberg, aka Pewdiepie, following a controversy over his production of anti-Semitic videos. Maker Studios, a division of Disney, issued a statement, while noting that he had editorial independence in producing them.

“Although Felix has created a following by being provocative and irreverent, he clearly went too far in this case and the resulting videos are inappropriate,” a spokesperson told The Wall-Street Journal

WSJ reports that Kjellberg has posted nine videos with anti-Semitic content in the last several months. Among them were a video in which two men held a sign that read, "Death to All Jews," another with a man dressed as Jesus Christ saying, "Hitler did absolutely nothing wrong," and several that included imagery of swastikas or Hitler. Three of the videos have since been taken down.

The two men in the "Death to All Jews" video were hired through the freelance service Fiverr, and later apologized, saying they didn't realize the implications of the statement they were hired to convey. They were banned from Fiverr, along with Kjellberg, who asked for the service to lift the ban on the two men he hired.

Kjellberg issued a statement after the controversy began circulating, distancing himself from hate speech. While he claimed he was merely trying to point out the absurdity of online services like Fiverr, he did openly recognize their offensive nature.

"I make videos for my audience. I think of the content that I create as entertainment, and not a place for any serious political commentary," he said. "I know my audience understand that and that is why they come to my channel. Though this was not my intention, I understand that these jokes were ultimately offensive.” He also stated he did not support "any kind of hateful attitudes" or "hate-based groups."

Joke or not, though, Jonathan Vick of the Anti-Defamation League said it presents a real problem in normalizing hate-speech. "“Just putting it out there brings it more and more into the mainstream,” Vick said. To that end, he pointed out that a neo-Nazi Web site actually praised Kjellberg and thanked him for making the public "more comfortable" with their views.

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  • reply
    February 13, 2017 7:40 PM

    Steve Watts posted a new article, Report: Disney Cuts Pewdiepie Deal Following Anti-Semitic Videos

    • reply
      February 13, 2017 7:40 PM

      What the fuck. That's amazing it took that long

    • reply
      February 13, 2017 8:15 PM

      Arggg can he go away now, like forever...

      • reply
        February 13, 2017 11:48 PM

        Nope cause he's awesome

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 1:48 AM

          Woah. We've got an actual real life pewdiepie fan.

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 4:28 AM

            how?

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 5:01 AM

            I can't say i'm a fan but i like some of his work and i respect what he does. At least he provides a higher quality content compared to shack's all time favorite Anita Sarkeesian.

    • reply
      February 13, 2017 8:20 PM

      Walt Disney loved the Jews!

    • reply
      February 13, 2017 8:26 PM

      I'm probably I bad person but I found those videos hilarious.

      • reply
        February 13, 2017 8:49 PM

        You should reconsider your humor filter. Just laughing at a race of people being grossly generalized isn't exactly funny

        • reply
          February 13, 2017 8:52 PM

          its 2017, racism is okay again

        • reply
          February 13, 2017 8:55 PM

          Pewdiepie is a comedian. I support whatever companies dropping support for him.

          But I also support him creating comedy. The comedy here being the people in those vids were paid $5 to write that. Most people would scoff at that in the western world. These guys didn't care or even know what it was saying. That's who is expense in the joke. If he adopted it as a catch phrase or changed his channel name to that- yeah he's saying something about being bigoted. But in his current frame? It seems like something Louis CK could do a bit on stage and get laughs. He could say he paid these guys $5 to see if they'd say this. And they did, because they don't know any better.

          I see no correlation to his bit and him being a nazi.

          • reply
            February 13, 2017 9:02 PM

            SJWs are just counting coup.

          • reply
            February 13, 2017 9:08 PM

            He can make his racist art all he wants.

          • reply
            February 13, 2017 9:30 PM

            He's mega rich now and needs to understand there's no place for jokes like that in the gaming community, where the majority of it are impressionable kids who when they see things like this, will probably think it's ok to say in school, home, etc.

          • reply
            February 13, 2017 9:33 PM

            Mostly the problem is that his audience is 12 year old boys that will parrot that shir.

            • reply
              February 13, 2017 9:42 PM

              So you're saying since 2K people watch him perhaps he shouldn’t act like a complete asshole?

              • reply
                February 13, 2017 9:47 PM

                2k? 50m subscribers.

                • reply
                  February 14, 2017 12:01 AM

                  Year 2000 and up? He knows that he is getting more than 2k

          • reply
            February 13, 2017 9:44 PM

            If you make a racist video that garners praise from Nazis/White Supremacists, you have made a racist video. It's that simple. No explanations are needed as to what you intended, or how you wanted it to be seen, or how your audience is smart enough to understand.

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 12:27 AM

            "Pewdiepie is a comedian" ehhhhhhhhhhhhhhh He screams at mundane things.....not sure if that counts

            • reply
              February 14, 2017 1:49 AM

              Exactly! He is no comedian whatsoever, he just happened to be at the right place at the right time...

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 6:15 AM

            The point to me is not whether he's a Nazi or hates Jews or whatever, but that him portraying this the way he is (a joke or not) is legitimizing and spreading abhorrent behavior. Whether he says "it's a joke!" and whether it actually is not the point; the point is that people (including kids) will be watching this, and imitating it.

            He has a big audience. That brings some responsibility. I think he's refusing to admit that.

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 7:06 AM

            They are hilarious. People need to watch them before they call it racism. It is very clearly his scandinavian sense of humor on display, which can easily trigger people without sarcasm filters. People need to fuckin chill and find other shit to be offended at.

      • reply
        February 13, 2017 9:32 PM

        I'm probably a bad person, but I find your posts hilarious.

    • reply
      February 13, 2017 9:28 PM

      What a dumb kid.

    • reply
      February 13, 2017 9:31 PM

      Money changes people. Or really they reveal who they truly are since they don't care once they reach a certain threshold.

    • reply
      February 13, 2017 9:34 PM

      A few friends of mine just worked on a show starring him. I wonder if that's cancelled now.

    • reply
      February 13, 2017 10:22 PM

      Those videos were hilarious, stupid Disney, it was obviously he was joking

      • reply
        February 14, 2017 4:04 AM

        Yeah, no. Being in any way connected to a guy who paid people to hold a sign saying "Death to all Jews", as a clean, family image company like Disney? Come on, they had to let him go. Doesn't even matter if some people find that funny or not.

      • reply
        February 14, 2017 10:10 AM

        awful anti-Semitism confirmed.

    • reply
      February 13, 2017 10:30 PM

      Douches gonna douche

    • reply
      February 13, 2017 10:31 PM

      Oh, so he is making Ethan Bradberry-esque "don't be so offended, it's just a Social Experiment" videos, now?

      • reply
        February 13, 2017 11:50 PM

        You people need to stop being dickheads and so sensitive about this, pewdiepie is well known for being simple and funny person and he's far from being a racist or anything.
        Also why it's ok for someone like Borat (who we all know is a Jew) ot make dark jokes about Jews and the rest can't do 0.1% of that!!

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 1:05 AM

          Borat doesn't have an audience that's aimed at 8-12 year olds

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 1:43 AM

          Which dark joke from Baron-Cohen garnered praise and support from White Supremacists? I seem to recall them getting pissed off at being fooled.

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 2:16 AM

          He ought to stick to being simple and funny, then. He's not good at subversive humor, clearly! Not to mention that in the current climate, where racism is on the rise, that type of thing can be easily construed as serious.

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 2:17 AM

            This video has been published more than a month, people need to stop over reacting, it's just a joke

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 2:26 AM

          Yeah but he can't make the transition from Disney poster child to Louis CK overnight.

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 4:25 AM

          pewdiepie is well known for being simple and funny person by 10 year olds everywhere

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 4:49 AM

            I'm 33 and I find some of his videos funny, it doesn't have to be adult and smart funny, sometimes silly kiddish funny is funny

            • reply
              February 14, 2017 5:10 AM

              He's not my style of humor, but I can get why some people would think it's funny. When he starts using hate speech for shock value, that's when it crosses a line for me.

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 5:25 AM

          Aren't you our resident anti-semite? Not sure I can take your opinion on this seriously.

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 5:45 AM

            Yes, he is, it's sad because he has a legitimate grievance against Israel but for some reason he takes all his anger out on Jews instead of the state that fucked his family over. Makes it hard to sympathize with him.

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 5:54 AM

            How can I be an anti semite if I was a semite!!

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              February 14, 2017 10:42 AM

              The same way black people can still be racist in their attitudes towards other black people? Being the thing you hate doesn't mean you can't hate that thing for being a thing in your mind.

              Enjoy the cognitive dissonance!

              • reply
                February 14, 2017 11:27 AM

                But what if some of his friends are Jews?

                • reply
                  February 14, 2017 11:28 AM

                  Hm yeah good point, I hadn't considered that angle...

            • reply
              February 14, 2017 11:17 AM

              Depends. Semitic also includes Arabs, not just Jews.

              • reply
                February 14, 2017 11:18 AM

                Guess I need to read farther before I post.

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 5:54 AM

            And what does this fact has to do with PewDiePie!!!

            • reply
              February 14, 2017 6:27 AM

              well it directly explains why you're defending his anti-semitic jokes fucking obviously

              • reply
                February 14, 2017 6:52 AM

                It's a fuckin joke by a stupid kid, stop making big deal out of it, he didn't literally mean anything with that

                • DM7
                  reply
                  February 14, 2017 7:27 AM

                  It is a big deal to Disney, who has cut ties with him.

                • reply
                  February 14, 2017 7:28 AM

                  how the hell can any of us possibly know that?

                • reply
                  February 14, 2017 8:09 AM

                  Wait, are you really anti-Semitic? Like, for reals?

                  • reply
                    February 14, 2017 8:18 AM

                    I can't be anti-myself you know

                    • reply
                      February 14, 2017 8:20 AM

                      Ok so you're not anti-semite but you hate Jews, I don't really see how that's any better.

                      • reply
                        February 14, 2017 8:24 AM

                        Please don't turn the thread into this but I'll explain view, i'm anti-zionists and NOT anti-jews.

                        Incoming shitty responses that got nothing to do with the the thread, im getting just because I like PewDiePie and understand his humor

                    • reply
                      February 14, 2017 8:26 AM

                      You're being disingenuous. Everyone knows that when someone says "anti-semite" they mean "anti-jews".

                      • reply
                        February 14, 2017 8:29 AM

                        Then maybe it's the right time for people to fix it and start calling it anti-jews because Arabs are also semites

                        • reply
                          February 14, 2017 12:38 PM

                          We live in a world where hate for Arabs has caught up to hate for Jews for the irrational general public. "Anti-Semitism" as a term that lumps us both together is probably more relevant than ever before, but exactly because of that, there's more need to break it down into its two subgroups as well.

                          Too much goddamn hate in this world.

                  • reply
                    February 14, 2017 8:19 AM

                    IIRC his family was booted off their land in Palestine by Israel >50 years ago, and he doesn't differentiate between jews and Israel.

                    You should read some of the back and forth exchanges between him and UBP if you're really curious.

                    • reply
                      February 14, 2017 8:27 AM

                      I understand the difference and I explained my view in a response above

                • reply
                  February 14, 2017 8:14 AM

                  You are doing yourself a severe disservice by defending this so hard.

                  PDP isn't a kid. He's a nearly 30 year old multi millionaire youtube star. More than once has been recognized as being savvy enough to be one of the first to do so. He was signed on by Disney for christ's sake.

                  Given that, you'd think that he and his supporting staff might have hit the breaks on getting a "Death to All Jews" 'prank' done. Want to talk about what he literally could have done? They could have literally picked from a million other witty phrases/memes, but instead settled on "Death to All Jews".

                  He's getting right fucked and it's well deserved. You can join him if you can't understand the idiocy of what he did.

                  tl;dr - Christ, what an asshole.

                • reply
                  February 14, 2017 8:15 AM

                  He's nearly 30 and has an audience of ~50M. He's not a kid.

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 6:57 AM

            TIL the shack has a resident anti-Semite.

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 8:12 AM

            He's also the guy that said all US/Israeli soldiers should hang, or something like that.

            hanged_man is a prat at the very least.

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 9:17 AM

            Yes, he is. Never take anything he says on this topic seriously. He's a fairly outspoken anti-semite.

            • reply
              February 14, 2017 12:43 PM

              i mean, it's not like you have even remotely the same perspective as him. personally if my family got treated like shit and kicked out of a place we belonged i'd be pretty raw too.

              the shack sure likes defending native americans vs WHITES so i don't see why a palestinian can't hate jews

              • reply
                February 14, 2017 7:06 PM

                I don't give a flying fuck what his perspective is in terms of him being a fucking anti-semite hate spewing poster.

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 6:51 AM

          leave Britney alone, *sobs*

      • reply
        February 14, 2017 5:59 AM

        Nope. He paid some people to say some extreme stuff on Fivver just to see if they'd do it. They did. Now the cult of outrage is outraged.

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 6:15 AM

          It looks like he did more than just the one video though; the article says he did nine.

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 7:09 AM

          So do you think a multi-billion dollar company like Disney should have just ignored it?

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 8:34 AM

            Nope. I think the tone and demographic for his content are changing though and Disney sponsorship doesn't make sense with the type of humor he's going for.

      • reply
        February 14, 2017 7:00 AM

        Yeah, and I'm sure half the assholes on /r/TheDonald aren't really white supremacists, they're just trolling or doing it for the luls. Doesn't really matter what your motivation is here.

    • reply
      February 14, 2017 12:10 AM

      Edgy entertainer leans on shocking content for views, more at eleven.

    • reply
      February 14, 2017 2:51 AM

      He is friends with H3H3 so he must not hate all the jews. really makes you think

    • reply
      February 14, 2017 5:18 AM

      This is a can of worms, the response to this is reasonable (businesses should be able to decide not to support him), but he has a huge audience. It'd be really bad if this pushes more kids into the world of hating "SJWs" and therefore putting on blinders towards real policy discussions between actual politicians.

    • reply
      February 14, 2017 6:01 AM

      ITT: Bunch of people commenting with no context.

      • reply
        February 14, 2017 7:30 AM

        what context is required? was pewdiepie oppressed by jews his whole life?

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 7:49 AM

          No Pewdiepie made a joke so it's automatically free from criticism

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 8:04 AM

            "it was a just a joke" the get out of jail free card for all internet tools

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 8:36 AM

          Obviously I mean watching the video and knowing the context of the joke. It's not nearly as bad as the witch hunt is making it out to be.

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 8:44 AM

            im not going to lie, i've yet to hear a joke that gives sufficient context to make death for jews funny

            • reply
              February 14, 2017 9:55 AM

              Oh well look at you!

            • reply
              February 14, 2017 10:13 AM

              That's because you haven't heard my Dutch oven joke yet.

            • reply
              February 14, 2017 12:51 PM

              I think I first heard the "how many Jews can you fit in a car" joke when I was 8 years old. Pretty funny stuff tbh!

            • reply
              February 14, 2017 1:26 PM

              I guess you don't know who invented the dab then.

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 8:48 AM

            I've watched them, and it's not "the joke" that is burning him, it's the fact he keeps digging. Watch the WSJ link I posted. What started as (probably) a bad and unfunny joke gets worse each time he tries to explain it away.

          • reply
            February 14, 2017 10:11 AM

            Obviously many people watched it and have different opinion on it than you.

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 8:45 AM

          He meant to say "kill all Jews" (with kindness)

        • reply
          February 14, 2017 12:13 PM

          apparently that was hanged_man

      • reply
        February 14, 2017 8:45 AM

        You want nudes of Pewdiepie?

      • reply
        February 14, 2017 10:46 AM

        Forks

    • reply
      February 14, 2017 9:59 AM

      Why did Disney even associate with the guy in the first place???! Have they not seen any of his youtube videos before??

      • reply
        February 14, 2017 10:08 AM

        Because he's majorly tapped into a youth market, which has always been Disney's long term integration strategy. Target kids so they become lifelong Disney lovers. They were probably looking for brand exposure, and his level of prominence on youtube probably afforded him a fair bit of leeway.

      • reply
        February 14, 2017 12:02 PM

        Iirc Disney owns maker, which is one of the bigger channel networks

    • reply
      February 14, 2017 10:01 AM

      Pewdiepie threads are usually almost as bad as political threads.

    • reply
      February 14, 2017 10:41 AM

      Does he have anything similar in his backlog, before getting these deals? If so, then foul on Disney for not researching better.