PewDiePie, that most assured of social media parasiticals, has been quivering of late.
His throne, built (much like the one in Westeros which we obsess about) on invalidating other people groups, has been at peril. Him and T-Series have been having a subscriber war of late. And as stereotypes are wont to do, T-Series turned to the letter of the law and PewDiePie's fans turned to soft-hued racism.
Not perhaps recognizing that the number of Bollywood fans outnumber a YouTuber's, PewDiePie published quite a few videos on the close contest, most in poor taste. He launched campaigns begging you to care while asserting he didn't.
When he first lost out to T-series in being the most subscribed channel, PDP did the classy thing and capitulated with a sarcastic video to T-Series, which had already been preceded by diss videos on the Noida-based company.
People were not pleased.
Indians(not the Indian bros) getting offended over "Indians have poo poo in their brain..." which is so outlandishly childish and is even followed by "that's a blatant racist lie" makes you wonder if it still is a blatant racist lie... #PewdiepieInsultsIndia 😑— liccmah (@liccmah) April 11, 2019
Part 1/2@pewdiepie: I hate T series so I'll talk shit about India and Indians and cover it by saying its a joke and donating some money to a country whose GDP is 5 times more than Sweden.Western P fans: Yes Indians are dumb.#PewDiePie #PewDiePieVsTSeries #PewdiepieInsultsIndia— TARUN KUMAR (@theTARUN_KUMAR) April 11, 2019
This is not hate. #pewdiepie idiot fans should know what would have happened to #PewdiepieInsultsIndia was their own nation.We are a free nation but national dignity cannot be compromised so he got banned. Actually PEWDS do not have brain and think they only have license to speak— Best of Indian Products (@ProductsIndian) April 12, 2019
Apart from social media, there was a real world effect too.
As noted by Bar&Bench, "The Delhi High Court has directed YouTube to remove two songs published by Swedish YouTuber PewDiePie from its platform. The interim order was granted by a Single Judge Bench of Justice Jayant Nath in a suit preferred by T-Series owner Super Cassettes Pvt Ltd., seeking to permanently restrain Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg, better known as PewDiePie, from uploading the songs titled ‘T-Series Diss Track/Bitch Lasagna’ and ‘Congratulations’."
Meanwhile, other Indian fans of the YouTuber took up arms for him.
How low can you go @TSeries, you are a disgrace to the entire Indian community. Cant you take a bloody joke. Geez. #PewdiepieInsultsIndia #PewDiePie #PewdiepieDidNothingWrong pic.twitter.com/izDAYUrlQ5— K.M. Shyamsundar (@kmshyamsundar) April 12, 2019
Am an Indian and until recently I was proud of being one. Now I can't believe that I was part of a society that can't take sarcastic jokes. IT IS A DISS TRACK HOW BUTTHURT CAN YOU GET, DID WE ACT LIKE ITS THE END OF THE WORLD WEN CARRYMINATI MADE A DISS? #PewdiepieInsultsIndia— kr1x (@kr1x1) April 12, 2019
Among the videos posted by his non-Indian fans was this gem, in which my favourite line is "Imagine if YouTube complies with this Indian law and judgement and removes PewDiePie's videos" followed by much eyebrow waggling and subtle racism:
Imagine Indians and their opinions/laws/judegements actually having to matter. These other non-Indian folk certainly didn't.
Um, #India the @WHO had to issue an alert to you about DEFECATING in the streets! Why are you wasting time with #PewDiePie and what content he produces? It’s called #FreedomOfSpeech so suck it up @TSeries #PewdiepieInsultsIndia #PewDiePieVsTSeries— DejectedRedshirt (@DejectRedshirt) April 12, 2019