This week I had a blog post all planned. It was written just waiting in its folder to be edited for upload. All was well until yesterday evening, when I got offended by something. Now let me tell you, I’m a white girl and according to the internet, we have a propensity to get offended by things. So I’m about to launch into a rant because I was offended so it will be a tall order to get people to listen.
What has thus offended me so? Yesterday I came across an article written by a news source I had previously considered to be a relatively reputable, The Guardian. Their offering discussed YouTuber ‘Pewdiepie’ (whose real name is Felix Kjellberg). It was, in my opinion, a pathetic, click-bait-esque, joke. It disgusted me.
Thankfully I was not alone, and Philip DeFranco (also of YouTube) discussed it in his latest video.[i] I won’t link the article, I won’t give them the satisfaction, but the tagline they went with was, “ To call him an alt-right agitator would perhaps be unfair as he has never publicly identified with the proto-fascist movement. But he shares much of their culture and amplifies it across the world. People should pay Pewdiepie more attention.”
In other words, here is a trained journalist writing about a world they don’t understand. They are seemingly praising Kjellberg in a backhanded, superiorly arrogant way. The article is a mess, as the Journalist themselves doesn’t seem sure whether or not they should be chastising him or in awe of him. Let me answer that puzzle for you, it’s simple, be in awe. This one guy has 61,944,085 subscribers and an average of 3 million views on each video.
You are using his name so people will click on your pathetic media source. YouTube has allowed the rise of entertainers such as Kjellberg because people can choose who to watch. Views are the votes, and Kjellberg’s views speak for themselves.
We know the big media corporations fear people like Kjellberg because they represent the shifting tide. People want to watch entertainers who not only understand them and their dank meme posting, game streaming, internet humour lives, but they want them to be just like them. Kjellberg is not a trained actor, reading lines someone else wrote. Or a news anchor who is forced to read the same disclaimer about fake news. People watch him because he is a real person.
This is not a new phenomenon, but it stands that if you are going to report on something nascent like YouTube (10 years old) from a form of media like newspapers (100s of years old) then do some actual investigative reporting and understand why it’s popular.
By the way, Pewdiepie is not anti-semantic, and neither is Mark Meechan of Scotland. Who will now serve jail time, for a humorous video that the stuffy generation (not by age but by choice) didn’t understand.[ii] It wasn’t a joke that didn’t land well, it was a joke that conservative assholes failed to realise was a new type of satire.
Fuck mass media. Learn how the internet works before you make an ass out of yourself commentating on a YouTuber who is loved by millions of people. Do not call him a proto-fascist because you are afraid of him, that’s how people in America were killed during the cold war. They were simply called a communist and then they were ‘disappeared’.
Go watch 50 hours of Pewdiepie videos and you might have a clue what he’s about. Or, go back to writing about truly troubling public figures and stop wasting your time on things you don’t seem to understand.
I will probably write more about this, I image Felix will respond to the article. Until then you can see Philip Defranco’s views on the situation, and subscribe to him and Felix. Trust me. You won’t be disappointed.
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