Felix Kjellberg, better known as PewDiePie is the world's highest-paid YouTube Star. He is also the most subscribed-to individual on YouTube, and with a total views across his videos of more than 14 billion (that's with a 'B'). He's been creating progressively more off-kilter content, including using the N-word in a video in early January. Then he seemed to be ready to try reaching for new lows by paying two indian men to hold up a sign saying "Death to all Jews" in a video.
He's continued on that same track by having posted an additional eight anti-Semitic videos, including attesting "Hitler Did Nothing Wrong," various swastikas, and the Nazi party anthem. Kjellberg has since taken down three of the nine videos, but the others still remain active, with YouTube still investigating the others. While YouTube's investigation might be ongoing, however Disney's Maker Studios, which had partnered with Kjellberg up to this point has now terminated their working relationship with him.
A spokeswoman for Maker Studios told Forbes.
Although Felix has created a following by being provocative and irreverent, he clearly went too far in this case and the resulting videos are inappropriate. Maker Studios has made the decision to end our affiliation with him going forward.
Kjellberg, having been caught apparently surprised by the strong response from the Internet took to Tumblr to respond (but not to apologize).
I think of the content that I create as entertainment, and not a place for any serious political commentary. I know my audience understand[s] 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.
Which does come across very similar to his response after the Death to all Jews video, which was to say that it was meant to be taken as a joke. With the publicity that came of the video, the two indian men who he hired to hold up the sign were both removed from their jobs, to which Kjellberg has also responded by insisting he holds no responsibility for anything that might have happened to them because of his idea.
While YouTube has not yet taken action against Kjellberg's channel, they have stopped feeding ads to a few of the Nazi videos. If Google were to opt to suppress ads for his channel, his famed ten-plus million yearly in ad-revenue would be significantly impacted.