Pewdiepie PS4 Culture Industry

We almost didn't run this, but Pewdiepie is perhaps the biggest name in gaming culture, and so it probably deserves a quick post. In case you haven't seen the news, the Swedish YouTuber has been dropped by Disney-owned network Maker Studios after a failed gag which included anti-Semitic undertones. As the biggest YouTuber bar none, this is kinda big news.

While we're not going to go into detail about the video itself – you can seek out that information if you so choose – it's perhaps worth noting that Pewds apologised for the clip immediately: "I don't feel great about this," he said of the stunt. "I'm sorry, I'm so sorry. I don't know what else to say." But it seems like it's proved a step too far for his corporate overlords.

"Although Felix [Kjellberg, aka Pewdiepie] has created a following by being provocative and irreverent, he clearly went too far in this case and the resulting videos are inappropriate," a Maker Studios spokesperson told the Wall Street Journal, who put together a compilation of anti-Semitic references uncovered on his channel. This has caused Pewds to release a statement, which we've reproduced in full below:

It came to my attention yesterday that some have been pointing to my videos and saying that I am giving credibility to the anti-Semitic movement, and my fans are part of it as well for watching. I don't want to cite the sources because I don't want to give them any more attention.

This originated from a video I made a couple of weeks ago. I was trying to show how crazy the modern world is, specifically some of the services available online. I picked something that seemed absurd to me - that people on Fiverr would say anything for $5.

I think it's important to say something and I want to make one thing clear: I am in no way supporting any kind of hateful attitudes.

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. 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.

As laughable as it is to believe that I might actually endorse these people, to anyone unsure on my standpoint regarding hate-based groups: No, I don't support these people in any way. Thanks for reading.

It's a challenging one, isn't it? While it's clear that Pewds overstepped a line here, it could be argued that his channel's success has been built upon courting controversy. And yet with such a large audience of youngsters watching, it's also perhaps fair to expect the icon to behave a little more responsibly. It just goes to show, though: no one is untouchable.