Once again, the “face of YouTube” PewDiePie has found himself in hot water – and once again we have a throng of people ready to rip out his proverbial throat and a throng of people ready to defend him to the grave, and seemingly very few people understanding the actual issues that are coming about as a result of this.
I’ll be very clear: I don’t like PewDiePie’s brand of humour. I did, however, used to watch some of his videos when I was younger, as the style of humour appealed to me more then than it does now. Felix – his actual name, for those unsure of who I’m talking about – would probably do well to keep this in mind in the future. Because you see, the problem with Felix calling somebody a “nigger” on his PUBG livestream is not, in fact, that he called somebody playing a pixel avatar a nigger. And I’d like to dub this the “PewDiePie Problem” because, frankly, he’s the biggest face of this problem that we actually have.
So caught up in the problem at face-value – with the virtuous warriors of self-imposed social justice feeling the need to demonise Felix for being a racist in their eyes, and the mass of people thinking that their favourite YouTuber has done nothing wrong and most certainly isn’t a racist for his actions – nobody seems to be focusing on what this means in the bigger picture, here. And that bigger picture is a lot bigger than anybody seems to give it credit for.