DETROIT (ChurchMilitant.com) - A conservative commentator is losing advertising money after a left-wing video producer expressed his outrage to YouTube.
YouTube booted Louder with Crowder, the show hosted by conservative commentator Steven Crowder, from its Partner Program — thus depriving the show of funding through YouTube's advertisers.
Carlos Maza, a writer for left-wing news and opinion site Vox, complained on Twitter in a lengthy thread beginning May 30 that Crowder has repeatedly poked fun at him for being gay and Latino.
.@YouTube helped Crowder build an army of engaged, aggressive fans willing to mobilize on his behalf. He is currently convincing them that I’m an NBC operative trying to shut him down to stifle competition. His fans believe him. YouTube created a monster it‘s afraid to stop.— Carlos Maza (@gaywonk) June 1, 2019
Maza also pointed to how the Louder with Crowder show sells a T-shirt that reads, "Socialism is for f*gs." (The asterisk is actually an image of a fig in the T-shirt.)
Crowder issued a response to Maza in a video on May 31, saying in part, "That's friendly ribbing, and you know I genuinely wouldn't, wouldn't consider you being that upset about it considering your [Twitter] handle is @gaywonk!"
He cast Vox's calling on YouTube to crack down on him as a David vs. Goliath struggle, arguing, "This is an example of a giant corporate media entity trying to silence voices that they don't like. They've received over a hundred million — over two hundred million dollars total — from NBC Universal Comcast. ... By contrast, this channel is funded by mugs."
This is a reference to Louder with Crowder's "Mug Club," a promo for buying a one-year subscription to watch Louder with Crowder episodes daily.
An official Twitter account for YouTube replied to Maza's thread this Tuesday, stating, "Our teams spent the last few days conducting an in-depth review of the videos flagged to us, and while we found language that was clearly hurtful, the videos as posted don't violate our policies."
Then, in an additional reply on Wednesday, the YouTube Team announced it was demonetizing the Louder with Crowder channel, saying, "Update on our continued review–we have suspended this channel's monetization. We came to this decision because a pattern of egregious actions has harmed the broader community and is against our YouTube Partner Program policies."
Crowder talked about YouTube's decision to remove his channel from the Partner Program in the June 5 episode of Louder with Crowder.
Listen, this is, if you think it's not going to happen to you, this isn't just for conservatives now, OK? It's everybody. It's everybody who creates original content, because we have not been attacked for being conservative, mind you — at least that's not what they said — it's 'offensive jokes.' So if you do that, they completely remove your ability to make a living.
Crowder argued that media corporations like Vox and tech giants like YouTube "want to determine what's OK and what is not OK to say."
Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) has spoken against YouTube's demonetization of Crowder. Cruz said on Twitter on Thursday, "This is ridiculous. YouTube is not the Star Chamber — stop playing God and silencing those voices you disagree with. This will not end well."
YouTube also announced on Wednesday it was introducing a new policy of banning "hateful" content.
A statement from the internet giant read in part, "Today, we're taking another step in our hate speech policy by specifically prohibiting videos alleging that a group is superior in order to justify discrimination, segregation or exclusion based on qualities like age, gender, race, caste, religion, sexual orientation or veteran status."
Left-wing groups like the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) stand in favor of the new policy. An SPLC staffer told the press that the new policy is a good move and needs to be enforced strictly, saying, "As with other outlets before it, YouTube's decision to remove hateful content depends on its ability to enact and enforce policies and procedures that will prevent this content from becoming a global organizing tool for the radical right."