On Thursday, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) spoke out against YouTube’s recent crackdown on BlazeTV’s Steven Crowder.
At the behest of Vox’s Carlos Maza, formerly of Media Matters, YouTube disabled monetization on Wednesday from all of the conservative comedian’s videos on the platform.
“YouTube is not the Star Chamber — stop playing God & silencing those voices you disagree with. This will not end well,’ the Texas senator posted to Twitter.
“This is nuts,” Cruz wrote in a subsequent tweet. “YouTube needs to explain why [Steven Crowder] is banned, but [Samantha Bee] (‘Ivanka is a feckless c***.’) & [Jim Carrey] (‘look at my pretty picture of Gov. Kay Ivey being murdered in the womb’) aren’t. No coherent standard explains it.”
“Here’s an idea: DON’T BLACKLIST ANYBODY,” added the Republican.
YouTube disabled Crowder’s ability to make money off his videos mere hours after the platform admitted that the conservative did not violate any of its policies. After “conducting an in-depth review of the videos flagged to us,” Crowder’s videos “don’t violate our policies,” the company conceded on Tuesday. “Opinions can be deeply offensive, but if they don’t violate our policies, they’ll remain on our site. Even if a video remains on our site, it doesn’t mean we endorse/support that viewpoint,” YouTube added.
Things quickly changed on Wednesday after Maza went on a victimhood-laced tweeting spree that accused the platform of being anti-LGBT and encouraging LGBT employees at the company to “walk out” in protest.
“Update on our continued review–we have suspended this channel’s monetization,” YouTube announced. “We came to this decision because a pattern of egregious actions has harmed the broader community and is against our YouTube Partner Program policies.”
Naturally, YouTube disabling Crowder’s ability to make money off his videos wasn’t good enough. “The problem isn’t Crowder and the problem isn’t monetization. The problem is that [YouTube] allows monsters and bullies to become superstars, break YouTube’s rules, build an army of loyal, radicalized followers, and then make millions selling them merch that sustains their work,” Maza complained.
Right on cue, YouTube, again, capitulated: “To clarify, in order to reinstate monetization on this channel, he will need to remove the link to his T-shirts.”
(Note: The t-shirts in question do not include the word “f**,” as Maza and YouTube have suggested.)
Still, this was not good enough for Maza. “Oh my f***ing god,” he responded to YouTube.
Crowder confirmed on Wednesday that all his videos have been demonetized and that he’s been booted from the YouTube partner program. He also warned that the so-called “Vox ad-pocalypse” was not going to stop at just conservative voices.
For example, a popular history teacher and podcast host said Wednesday that YouTube banned him for “hate speech.”
“YouTube have banned me for ‘hate speech’, I think due to clips on Nazi policy featuring propaganda speeches by Nazi leaders. I’m devastated to have this claim levelled against me, and frustrated 15yrs of materials for #HistoryTeacher community have ended so abruptly,” he wrote.
“#VoxAdpocalypse was Carlos Maza and Vox dropping a nuke on Youtube taking out tons of innocent creators, like journalist Ford Fischer, to get one guy,” posted journalist Tim Pool. “Dropping a nuke on everyone [t]o get ONE GUY.”
Other conservatives highlighted that if YouTube were to be consistent with its ever-changing standards, then left-wing late night hosts should be demonetized from their platform, as well.
“Okay, if this is the game now, let’s play. This nonsense works both ways. Please explain why it doesn’t harm the broader [YouTube] community when Samantha Bee calls Ivanka Trump a ‘feckless c***,’ when Colbert calls Trump a ‘c*** holster’ for Vladimir Putin,” said Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro, making the same argument as Cruz.
NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch posted, “Hey [YouTube], does Colbert’s video skit of me getting shot violate your standards also or are you only specifically demonetizing conservatives?”
Maza, interestingly enough, publicly endorsed the assault of right-wing politicians and activists mere weeks ago. “Milkshake them all. Humiliate them at every turn. Make them dread public organizing,” Maza posted on May 21, linking to an article about so-called “milkshaking.”
And in December of 2018, the activist tweeted: “Deplatforming works and we should use it way more aggressively.”