On December 26, 2021, a twenty-nine minute video was uploaded by YouTuber MamaMax entitled 'Pick a Side YouTube' in which multiple popular content creators aired their disdain associated with YouTube's censorship policies.
The video begins with a quote:
"Your silence will not protect you." - Audre Lord
The video goes on to explain that a YouTube video was uploaded in November 2021 exposing a pedophile ring associated to IMVU user pablosunny. However, the video was soon removed for "violating YouTube's policy on nudity or sexual content."
YouTube claims the video was taken down due to the nude backside of an IMVU avatar being visible for a moment in the video. The video's creator, MamaMax, explained the video was meant to spread awareness of the dangers of sexual predators within the IMVU community. YouTube stood by their policy and did not approve the creator's appeal to have the video reuploaded because they stated "content meant to be sexually gratifying is not allowed on YouTube."
The video had almost a half million views before being taken down. On December 9, 2021, MamaMax tweeted:
"Appeal denied immediately. I'm giving you the opportunity now to resolve this peacefully @TeamYouTube, you have one week to make the right decision and spare yourself from another situation."
The video then goes on to explain how many content creators are being censored for trying to do good and expose predators. MamaMax states he understands the material covered is "raw" and "real" but that is how his audience of child sexual abuse victims say it should be shown. The reality is, as MamaMax explains, it is not a lighthearted subject. In order to properly call out the horrid acts of injustice towards children, he feels it is necessary for himself and his colleagues to cover their content in the manner he chooses.
MamaMax then explains that even though different subject material may be covered by his colleagues, they all have one thing in common: they don't like pedophiles. MamaMax challenges Youtube's censorship, stating they do not see "eye to eye" on the subject of disliking pedophilia due to the videos exposing pedophiles being taken down.
An army of YouTube content creators then join in on the discussion. The video's description credits the following creators: Nexpo, AnxietyWar, BarelySociable, MelissaSeema, ElvistheAlien, blameitonjorge, zeepsterd, READYTOGLARE, NickCrowley, GhostGum, UCNEs6RmBQwQrr39RmDCDa8A, SomeOrdinaryGamers, Technicals, JustStop, TheKinoCorner, AjayYouTube, UccHjBa3p70EUQUGyGWaJI4g, EudoxiaMysteries, JakeHanrahanTV, VinceVintage, Bowblax2, My2t1c, InsideAMindInsideAMind, TheChapter, TheRightOpinion, TurkeyTom, jaubrey, DaftPina, and ProxIsFrisky.
Each share their grievances with YouTube. They speak of censorship, injustice, and their concerns that YouTube is protecting predators by not allowing them to be exposed. YouTube stands accused of keeping videos in the interest of their advertisers while taking down educational and important videos by the very creators who have kept the platform alive.
ElvisTheAlien claims even completely innocent YouTube channels are now being destroyed without violating YouTube's terms of service.
ReadyToGlare states channels that exploit children that are marketed as "family channels" get more viewers than investigative channels that are pushed down on views due to the YouTube algorithm.
NickCrowley states his videos exposing fake animal rescues were suddenly being age restricted, then he began receiving community guideline warnings. He feels as if this was YouTube's way of making him stop creating the content he wanted to make.
TheKinoCorner brings up feeling like his right to free speech is being taken and important discussions are being stifled.
MamaMax makes several calls to action.
Susan Wojcicki, CEO of YouTube, is told to stop lying to content creators, breaking promises, and using "malicious and deceitful" language in her videos addressing censorship.
YouTuber Philip DeFranco is asked to speak up and to use his platform to help creators after he ignored prior requests for assistance in the #AnswerUsPedoTube pleas on Twitter. YouTuber Ethan Klein is asked to speak to YouTube on MamaMax's behalf, with MamaMax stating speaking to YouTube publicly rather than privately would be preferred. YouTuber Daniel Keem's assistance is requested in aiding MamaMax's cause after his prior help with #AnswerUsPedoTube. YouTuber John Scarce is asked to assist after his prior help with covering a video for MamaMax. YouTuber Charles "Charlie" White Jr. is asked for assistance once again after his prior conversation with YouTube's CEO. Chris Hansen is told to speak up for what is right by MamaMax, stating he knows Chris has connections "Susan cannot ignore." Shane Dawson is offered a chance to redeem himself after recent hate if he stands up for what is right. Musician Corpse_Husband is called upon to assist MamaMax with an ominous reminder that he owes MamaMax a favor due to a previous, unrelated situation.
MamaMax states he is willing to reach out to as many influencers as necessary to get his message across. He calls upon his followers to head to twitter and use the hashtag #PICKASIDEYOUTUBE.
At this time, YouTube has not responded.