After a parade of media coverage went PewDiePie's way over a series of allegedly anti-Semitic content posted on his YouTube channel — the most subscribed of all time — the popular YouTuber has finally responded to the allegations.
PewDiePie Anti-Semite Controversy
The YouTube star, less commonly known for his real name, Felix Kjellberg, has now offered an apology for the content in question, although not without being critical of the media, particularly on The Wall Street Journal's coverage.
Kjellberg says that the Journal's article about his videos with anti-Semitic messages was written in a way that was disparaging, and Kjellberg felt that it was a "personal attack" which disregarded his jokes out of the context.
Despite that, Kjellberg seems undeterred from the media maelstrom surrounding the controversy, and has said that he will keep on making content moving forward.
"I'm still here. I'm still making videos. Nice try, Wall Street Journal. Try again, mother*******," Kjellberg said in the clip. A warning to the faint-hearted: the video isn't exactly pared back in terms of strong language, although that's usually the expected PewDiePie fare.
According to a report by CNET, a representative from the publisher of the Wall Street Journal, Dow Jones, said the company stands by its reporting. The publication's coverage led this week to Disney-owned Maker Studios dropping Kjellberg, on top of Google-owned YouTube cancellation of the star's YouTube Red reality show series.
His main channel, however, was spared, continuing to host his videos and run advertisements. Kjellberg has since taken some of the videos down. In his response video, Kjellberg noted that he understands that "these things have consequences," and that his response video's aim isn't to put him in a position to justify his behavior.
The videos associated with the Anti-Semitic allegations included Nazi imagery, with one video featuring two men which was the YouTuber paid $5 to hold up a sign that read "Death to all Jews." Another one features a man in costume as Jesus, proclaiming that "Hitler did nothing wrong."
After a monologue which raised Kjellberg's difficulty with the media, particularly clickbait articles, he was finally able to offer an apology.
"I am sorry for the words that I used as I know they offended people. I admit that the joke itself went too far," he said, noting that he believes there's no limit to what topics can be joked about, but that there are right and wrong ways to go about telling them.
Kjellberg called the whole affair a "growing and learning experience," but also noted that the impact and reaction to the videos "has been nothing but insanity."
Kjellberg shed tears near the end of a video, thanking his supporters.
While two of Kjellberg's biggest partners might be gone, the YouTuber's channel appears to have come out unscathed, still with more than 53 million subscribers. It's unlikely for Maker Studios to reverse its decision, though, and it's similarly unlikely for YouTube Red to revive the canceled reality show.
What do you think about PewDiePie's response video, and by extension, the whole controversy? Feel free to sound off in the comments section below!