YouTube suspends Russell Brand's monetization

YouTube said that the suspension comes "following serious allegations against the creator."

Libby Emmons Brooklyn NY
YouTube has suspended monetization for popular streamer Russell Brand after anonymous allegations surfaced alleging that he is guilty of sexual misconduct. These allegations stem from a time period in his life during which he was very promiscuous, per his own writing and statements.

Brand's YouTube channel, where he has broadcast his concerns over the war in Ukraine, Covid inspired restrictions, and on other hot button issues, has 6.6 million subscribers. YouTube said that the suspension comes "following serious allegations against the creator."

"If a creator's off-platform behavior harms our users," YouTube said in their statement, "employees or ecosystem, we take action to protect the community."

YouTube said futher that this suspension of monetization "applies to all channels that may be owned or operated by Russell Brand." Brand has four channels on the platform. Brand also has a 1.4 million subscribed channel on free-speech platform Rumble, 11.2 million followers on X (Twitter), and another 3.8 million on Instagram.

Brand's upcoming comedy tour Bipolarisation was also cancelled by promoters.

"We are postponing these few remaining addiction charity fundraiser shows. We don’t like doing it — but we know you’ll understand," read a statement from show promoters.

The Times published extensive accounts of others condemning Brand after the anonymous allegations were leveled in their own pages. Other women began to speak out about their allegations against Brand as well.

The allegations against Brand surfaced in reporting from The Times, The Sunday Times, and Channel 4 Dispatches, in which four women claimed misconduct. At least three of the women spoken to by Times journalists were in romantic relationships with Brand at the time of alleged infractions. With the exception of an ex-girlfriend, none of the women allowed the allegations they made to be published alongside their actual name.

One woman claims she was in a romantic relationship with Brand in the UK when she was 16, which is the age of consent. Another woman said that Brand raped her against a wall in his home after he summoned her to his home for a sexual encounter which she states she then did not want upon arrival. An ex-girlfriend claimed that he was "controlling and manipulative." Still another woman claimed he tried to remove her clothes and kiss her.

The reporting began in 2019, and The Times stated in their initial report that the women they spoke to did not want to speak out until they were contacted by journalists investigating the rumors they had heard from the entertainment world as to Brand's behavior. It was in part due to Brand's recent success, the accusers said, per The Times, that they felt it was important to speak out now.

Before the reporting was published, Brand published a video in his own defense. He had been contacted by reporters, he said, and said that he had "received two extremely disturbing letters, or a letter and an email, one from a mainstream media TV company, one from a newspaper listing a litany of extremely aggressive attacks as well as some pretty stupid stuff, like my community festivals should be stopped, that I shouldn't be able to attack mainstream media narratives, on this channel. But amidst this litany of astonishing rather Baroque attacks are some very serious allegations that I absolutely refute."

He questioned if "there is another agenda at play" underpinning this reporting. That is also a question raised by actress Rose McGowan, who famously and publicly accused Harvey Weinstein of rape. Her allegations, launched publicly and during the MeToo era, inspired other women to come forward as well. While she didn't speak in Brand's defense, she did speak against the trend of anonymous accusations, saying that people need to use their names when they speak out.

"Let me start this by saying I stand with all victims," she said. "I think what's being done right now in the Russell Brand case with the Guardian and the other news outlets is part of a concerted effort to turn the public in general, against anybody who comes out and one of the reasons and ways they're doing this is a concerted effort to bend journalistic rules that have always been in place such as having to be on the record with who you are and what your name is, in order to accuse.

"I didn't make these rules," McGowan continued. "These are the rules. They were the rules. So there's something very strange going on. When these rules are being bent in order to push a narrative, it's almost like Icarus flew too close to the sun. He's a low lying fish and not one of the truly powerful so he can be thrown to the wolves. I don't know if he's guilty. I don't know if he's innocent. That's not what this is about. This about driving us further apart. And mainstream media and media outlets protecting people on a higher up level, from true consequence, from what they're really doing and what they're really getting away with.

"And the real losers in this are actual victims. I'm sorry and hurt for anybody who's been hurt. But this narrative and the way it's being done is just pushing this culture war, pushing us farther apart, and pushing any gains gotten by people believing accusers to the edge and this is a way to have us not be believed. This is not the way the reporting is done.

"You have to go on the record. It has always been that way. I didn't make it so it didn't make me happy to have to do so. Neither did it make others happy to have to do so. But to blindly and anonymously accuse, none of these high level journalistic outlets would have ever let this be published before. So I have to ask why. Why now, what is the true narrative they're pushing?" she asked.
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