Written by David Zimmermann
What’s happening: Popular YouTuber and comedian Russell Brand has been accused of rape, sexual assault, and abuse of four women, according to a British exposé published Saturday. The anonymous women claim the ex-Hollywood actor sexually assaulted them between 2006 and 2013. Before the news broke, Brand emphatically denied the allegations and insisted all his relationships were “consensual.”
- Demonetized: YouTube announced Tuesday following the allegations that Brand could no longer make money from its platform. Brand has not been charged with any criminal wrongdoing.
No evidence: Similar to several past #MeToo allegations, no sufficient evidence has been provided in a court of law establishing Brand’s guilt. In lieu of filing police reports at the time the alleged assaults took place, these four accusers waited over a decade to come forward — in a news article and accompanying documentary.
Why it matters: Brand, who currently has over 6.6 million subscribers on YouTube alone, has for years been extremely critical of mainstream media and the political establishment. Despite the presumption of innocence in America, YouTube has assumed guilt and cut off a large percentage of Brand’s livelihood over unproven accusations.