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PewDiePie Is Inexcusable But DMCA Takedowns Are Not the Way To Fight Him (vice.com) 506

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Motherboard: Felix Kjellberg, better known as PewDiePie, is the most popular YouTuber in the world. He's gotten himself into another controversy, this time for shouting the n-word while livestreaming a video game. The 27-year-old Swede has repeatedly been criticized for hate speech, and just last month said he would no longer make Nazi jokes after a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia turned violent. But while playing PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds on Sunday, Kjellberg, who has over 57 million subscribers on YouTube, called another player the n-word before erupting into laughter. "What a fucking n****r," he said. "Jeez, oh my god. What the fuck? Sorry, but what the fuck? What a fucking asshole. I don't mean that in a bad way." Kjellberg did not immediately respond to a request for comment, and has yet to publicly acknowledge the incident.

In response to Kjellberg's use of a racial slur, a number of video game players and developers have condemned the creator. Sean Vanaman, the co-founder of video game company Campo Santo, decided to use copyright law to push back against Kjellberg. On Twitter, he said he was filing a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) takedown request against the famous YouTuber regarding a video in which Kjellberg plays Campo Santo's game Firewatch. There are compelling reasons to [remove hate speech from major internet platforms] by any means necessary, but DMCA overreach is among the least compelling options, considering that it unilaterally puts power into the hands of what are essentially uninvolved parties and allows for little arbitration or defense on the part of those who have their content removed.

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PewDiePie Is Inexcusable But DMCA Takedowns Are Not the Way To Fight Him

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  • Who gives a shit? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Friday September 15, 2017 @07:09PM (#55206809)

    Seriously, who?

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 15, 2017 @07:24PM (#55206887)

      This matters because the DMCA is being used for the purpose of censorship. That's an abuse of the DMCA and, as I noted in another comment, creimer has used the same tactics here on Slashdot. It's not especially rare, and it's an abuse of the law. The DMCA exists to prevent copyright infringement, not as a tool for censorship. I know who PewDiePie is, but I don't care about him. I do care that the law is being abused to censor unpopular views and free speech, because that can easily be turned to censor other speech and viewpoints. I have no sympathy that PewDiePie is getting backlash for using the n-word, but I do care about protecting free speech.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        *Only neo-nazis defend free speech*... Sarcasm aside, this quote:

        There are compelling reasons to [remove hate speech from major internet platforms] by any means necessary...

        is dangerous bullshit. There are no compelling reasons to remove any speech from the internet, ever. Censorship is tyranny and evil and must be defeated by any means necessary. We must make the internet absolutely 100% indelible!

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          The fucking leftists are going to take us half way to a 1984 thought police, and the inevitable right wing reaction will take us the rest of the way as it burns out the leftist infection.

          Fucking Marxists.

    • Copyright is even more inexcusable. It steals culture and knowledge from humanity and is much much worse than someone's hurt fee fees
    • I think the only place I have ever heard the name is on Slashdot in this story and one previous story. So yeah who gives a shit.
  • Oh please (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 15, 2017 @07:10PM (#55206811)

    How is what PewDiePie said "inexcusable?" Ever said something in a heated moment you regret later? That's all the happened. A slip of the tongue. It happens. Fucking deal with it.

    Oh, wait, I accidentally swore. Clearly all my YouTube videos should have DMCA take-downs against them over a single fleeting expletive.

    You may not like PewDiePie, but stop trying to pretend he did anything objectionable. He didn't.

    • Re:Oh please (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Kohath ( 38547 ) on Friday September 15, 2017 @08:48PM (#55207283)

      Yes. Too many people have too much invested in milking grievances and hunting witches for such a thing to be excused.

      If people started accepting apologies and being tolerant and magnanimous and kind and understanding, we'd all live happier, more peaceful lives.

      And then what would community organizers do to become rich and powerful? Who would pay professional protestors? What would diversity coordinators do at colleges? How would you get out the racial vote to elect the same old politicians to continue to fail to solve any problems?

      • Re:Oh please (Score:5, Insightful)

        by BlueStrat ( 756137 ) on Saturday September 16, 2017 @12:34AM (#55208143)

        Yes. Too many people have too much invested in milking grievances and hunting witches for such a thing to be excused.

        If people started accepting apologies and being tolerant and magnanimous and kind and understanding, we'd all live happier, more peaceful lives.

        And then what would community organizers do to become rich and powerful? Who would pay professional protestors? What would diversity coordinators do at colleges? How would you get out the racial vote to elect the same old politicians to continue to fail to solve any problems?

        So much this.

        In gaming lingo, all the people who get triggered over a word (or image, flag, symbol, etc etc) are being *farmed* by the professional shit-stirrers like those mentioned in your post, who are only looking to gain wealth and political power from all the the hatred, division, and strife they incite, to the greater misery of everyone.

        Holy crap, people! This is kindergarten stuff! Here's a little milk-and-graham-crackers quiet-time story.

        "Little kindergartner Johnny pulls Sally's hair whenever the teacher isn't looking, and she screams and cries. He keeps pulling her hair and laughing at her screaming and crying. Then, Sally decides to *not* scream and cry. Little Johnny isn't enjoying pulling Sally's hair any more and stops doing it."

        The End

        Take the power to offend away and the offender loses interest when he isn't rewarded with the reaction he wants.

        Now, go finger-paint something and stop empowering haters!

        Strat

    • Said something in the heat of the moment? Sure, but anyone who's immediate reaction without thinking go to exclamation is ni*ger is in the wrong. It's not just a generic "cuss word," it has a very specific meaning with a long nasty history and ongoing use today. Just because it was a "slip" as you say doesn't excuse it, it just shows what kind of person he is. He has a history of racist comments, it's not like the backlash is out of nowhere. The content owners of the games that he makes money off of have
    • by HalAtWork ( 926717 ) on Saturday September 16, 2017 @07:44AM (#55209179)

      N*gger isn't a swear word it's a demeaning and dehumanizing word.

      Curse words like fuck allude to sex, n*gger is designed to erase anything distinct about someone and reduce them to a preconceived construct designed to abstract the target instead of dealing directly with the individual on common terms.

      Perhaps words can change meaning over time but there are many people alive who have had negative experiences involving that word being used as I described above, and to hear someone who you are supposed to enjoy drop that word takes a lot of the enjoyment out for certain people.

      • by Cederic ( 9623 )

        So why do so many black people use the word?

        Seems to me all this fuss is racism against someone for using a word while white.

  • harden up (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 15, 2017 @07:10PM (#55206815)

    No one ever got their feelings hurt and woke up the next morning with Leprosy. This 'hate speech' crusade is just ridiculous.

    • Quite a few of them woke up hanging from trees though. Well, they didn't wake up per se...
  • To find a solution to this problem, just take a tip from Mr. Paul Anka [youtube.com]

  • by enigma32 ( 128601 ) on Friday September 15, 2017 @07:18PM (#55206851)

    I'm not advocating hate speech, but why is there the need to censor "n****r" when "fucking asshole" was printed in plaintext?

    These are all just words. It's no different than "chink" or "beaner". By censoring them we elevate their status and perpetuate the undesirable meaning behind them. It's just stupid.

    Even slashdot required me to censor it to post. wtf.

    • by Kohath ( 38547 )

      Because saying "fucking asshole" doesn't summon the inquisition and start the witch hunt.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by quantaman ( 517394 )

      I'm not advocating hate speech, but why is there the need to censor "n****r" when "fucking asshole" was printed in plaintext?

      These are all just words. It's no different than "chink" or "beaner". By censoring them we elevate their status and perpetuate the undesirable meaning behind them. It's just stupid.

      Even slashdot required me to censor it to post. wtf.

      For "n****r" vs "fucking asshole", fucking assholes aren't really a distinct class of people, and to the extent they are they have a lot of control over whether they're a "fucking asshole" or not.

      As for the other racial slurs, the percentage of black Americans coupled with the history of anti-black racism make anti-black racism an unusually taboo subject in the US.

      On a more general note, if you freak out every time rules are applied inconsistently in the English language you're just end up looking like a fu

    • by Britz ( 170620 )

      WTF Slashdot? This post at +5 Insightful? This is the exact opposite of insightful. This is just someone who does not understand racial slurs and hate speech.

      http://lmgtfy.com/?q=why+racia... [lmgtfy.com]

      It's not difficult...

    • by seoras ( 147590 )

      Ever been to India? It's a bit surreal walking about and seeing a Nazi symbol adorning everything.
      As a westerner you need to remind yourself that Adolf stole it from India and that it really symbolises the eternal wheel of life.

      The "N" word has a source too "The variants neger and negar derive from the Spanish and Portuguese word negro (black)" (I'd add the wikipedia link but the dumb ass "lameness filter" won't let me link to it because it involves spelling out the N word in full. Really /. ? FFS...)

      I find

  • by Gravis Zero ( 934156 ) on Friday September 15, 2017 @07:21PM (#55206865)

    DMCA overreach is among the least compelling options, considering that it unilaterally puts power into the hands of what are essentially uninvolved parties and allows for little arbitration or defense on the part of those who have their content removed.

    It seems like if a DMCA takedown is so powerful then it shouldn't be blindly accepted. This is just a symptom of the problem that is the DMCA.

  • by rmdingler ( 1955220 ) on Friday September 15, 2017 @07:21PM (#55206869) Journal
    When we ascribe the power of offensiveness to a word, it decreases the likelihood it will wither away from the language.

    For unlawful carnal knowledge.

    • When we ascribe the power of offensiveness to a word, it decreases the likelihood it will wither away from the language.

      Maybe, maybe not, but that has nothing to do with the case at hand, because no one is ascribing power of offensiveness to the word. The word absolutely has power of offensiveness, which arises from centuries of bloody horrific oppression. Nothing you can do will remove that history, so the best thing you can do is to make it clear that invoking the history is an anti-social action, not acceptable among decent people.

  • by tfranzese ( 869766 ) on Friday September 15, 2017 @07:25PM (#55206893)
  • by Anonymous Coward

    PewDiePie got angry during a game and cursed. There really is no issue involved.

    The real racists out there are incredibly casual about it. They aren't trying to be shocking for humor or to get a reaction (some of whom try too hard and it's obvious). It's just a part of their mind and it can't be separated.

  • Or we could accept the fact that he doesn't live in america and that the 'n-word' has difference meanings depending on location. For example, it simply isn't that big a deal where I live. It's a nasty word, but that's all.

  • by cfalcon ( 779563 ) on Friday September 15, 2017 @07:36PM (#55206933)

    It's fucking ludicrous to try to discuss this on a website where neither the summary, title, nor comments, can actually contain the word in question.

    I'm generally surprised at how censorship has a history of complete failure, but maintains complete adherence from those who wish to police language.

    Anyway, not joke he made was "inexcusable". But how could you have that discussion here?

  • The DMCA is frequently used by commercial entities to take down speech which has even less relevance to it than this. That's an example of why the DMCA is an atrocious law, but why should only the abusive entities, like the RIAA or the MPAA, be allowed to use it?

    (There is at least one reason, but think about it for a minute first.)

    The only reason I've been able to identify, is that then you hate the law less than it deserves. I.e., you become complicit in its injustice. But most laws are unjust to someon

  • by DontBeAMoran ( 4843879 ) on Friday September 15, 2017 @08:43PM (#55207253)

    Please refer to Michael Anthony Richards, a.k.a. "Cosmo Kramer" on Seinfeld.

  • by Athanasius ( 306480 ) <slashdot AT miggy DOT org> on Friday September 15, 2017 @08:45PM (#55207269) Homepage

    "An anonymous reader quotes a report from Motherboard" and yet I can't see a link to that report in this article. Also, having heard about this whole thing elsewhere I know that PewDiePie has most definitely responded already in another video:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cLdxuaxaQwc&ab_channel=PewDiePie

    Yet another case of poor editing at /.

    Note I'm not in any way, shape, or form defending PewDiePie, despite his thorough apology and admittance of guilt. The fact the n-word came out like that for me points to it being part of his cultural vocabulary.

  • by LynnwoodRooster ( 966895 ) on Friday September 15, 2017 @09:17PM (#55207411) Journal
    He could never made a classic movie today [dailymotion.com]. Must be his racist, misogynist, cis-centric, religiously intolerant background...
  • I don't approve of that kind of language, not that I haven't heard the same language a billion times in online games. Its pretty common. The saddest part of the story is all the snowflakes convinced that they will melt into a puddle at the first "micro-transgression."

    FFS grow a spine, focus on what matters and move on with your life. You will be better off for it. Words are just words, nothing more, nothing less. If you want to see some real problems that need champions look to Africa or the Middle Eas

  • by Khyber ( 864651 ) <techkitsune@gmail.com> on Friday September 15, 2017 @09:27PM (#55207463) Homepage Journal

    The game company gave explicit license to everyone to stream game play and monetize it, and made no mention on that page of any limitations.

    Thus, PDP owned copyright to that video, as a unique public performance, by implicit license from the game company. The DMCA takedown is false and thus actionable.

    PDP should be smart and sue the ever living fuck out of the game company.

  • So when do the public executions begin?

  • I still fail to understand who really gives a rat's ass about someone else using "naughty words". Seriously, the entire planet needs to grow the f up in my opinion.

    Sorry, just had to get that off my chest after reading this stupidity.

  • PewDiePie (Score:2, Funny)

    by sexconker ( 1179573 )

    PewDiePie IS inexcusable, not because of any "racism", but because he's an annoying little shit.

  • by wkwilley2 ( 4278669 ) on Saturday September 16, 2017 @01:20AM (#55208269)

    may break your bones, but someone will always offend a feminist

  • by WolfgangVL ( 3494585 ) on Saturday September 16, 2017 @01:21AM (#55208271)

    RE_FUCKING_LAX

    JUST listen to the pretend things the kids say. While they put pretend bullets in each other. While they crash cars into each other. While they run pretend bankjobs, pretend kidnap each other, pretend knife, shank, and teabag, and sometimes even kill pretend nazis.. We laugh when we pretend beat the money out of the hookers, and pretend murder whole races.

    It's pretend shit talk. Just like the rest of the clowns on the internet. None of it is real. It's the fucking INTERNET. That's why the 400lb man in his moms basement pretending to be a 12 year old girl is the joke.

    Have some fucking perspective ya wimps. THIS IS NORMAL BEHAVIOR WHILE GAMING.

    Don't like it? - Stop paying for the privilege!

    To put it another way...

    "We train young men to drop fire on people, but their commanders won't allow them to write "fuck" on their airplanes because it's obscene!" -Colonel Walter E. Kurtz

  • by Isendur ( 1561333 ) on Saturday September 16, 2017 @02:13AM (#55208391)
    Negro. There I said it. Can we move on?
  • by wonkey_monkey ( 2592601 ) on Saturday September 16, 2017 @06:22AM (#55209005) Homepage

    In response to Kjellberg's use of a racial slur, a number of video game players and developers have condemned the creator.

    Well, yeah, God's done a lot of stupid stuff.

    Oh wait, you mean the game guy? "Creator" is a bit grand for what he does.

  • The problem is not with malspeech, but malhearing. Anyone who listens to you just _waiting_ for you to say something bad so they can pounce on it is not, in fact, listening. They are stalking you.

    It doesn't even matter what specific fault the malhearer is waiting for -- liberal, conservative, culture, relationships, whatever. It is impossible to have a conversation with anyone who is waiting to be offended.

Mathematicians stand on each other's shoulders. -- Gauss

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