PewDiePie launches weekly show on Twitch

Popular YouTuber is branching out, at the very moment that major advertisers are walking away from YouTube

Felix "PewDiePie" is starting a new streaming show on Twitch, the first time he has committed to making regular content for one of YouTube's biggest rivals.

The new show, which is called NetGlow, will stream once a week initially. Kjellberg compared the format to the "Cringemas" charity stream he made with help from fellow members of Revelmode, the network he started in collaboration with Disney's Maker Studios.

Kjellberg will continue to make YouTube videos, but this decision to branch out does arrive at a time when his relationship with the platform on which his fame was built is at its most strained. In February, Kjellberg was dropped by Maker Studios over a controversial video that contained what some believed was anti-semitic content. In the aftermath, during which Kjellberg defended the content on the grounds of satire, he was also dropped from YouTube's Preferred advertising network.

"It seems like YouTube is being forced to turn into television at this point. That's going to be bad for everyone"

Since then, Kjellberg has frequently discussed his thoughts on the direction YouTube is heading, and the announcement of NetGlow was made at the end of a video about the ongoing advertising crisis on YouTube. In the video, which bears the title "YouTube Is Over Party," Kjellberg discusses the decision of several major companies to withdraw their money for advertising after it was revealed that adverts had been placed on videos containing racist content - a motivating factor behind a recent policy change to raise the minimum number of views required for a channel to be monetised to 10,000.

The "Adpocalypse" has significantly reduced the amount of money Kjellberg was making from his videos, and Kjellberg noted the role of The Wall Street Journal in breaking the story that led to the boycott - the same paper that published the report that led to him being dropped by Maker Studios in February.

"Remember when I did the whole 'try again motherfuckers'?" Kjellberg asked, referring to a defiant closing comment aimed at The Wall Street Journal. "You weren't supposed to actually do it."

Kjellberg criticised the boycott as a huge overreaction, highlighting that the issue was caused because of "five videos" out of "9 billion" on YouTube. He also expressed concern for its impact on creators with smaller audiences than his own, who can't so easily bear such a significant drop in revenue.

"The reason people love YouTube is that it's free, it's open and you can say what you want. It's not like television," he said. "But it seems like YouTube is being forced to turn into television at this point. That's going to be bad for everyone.

"I understand that advertisers need to feel that they're spending money and it [isn't] showing up on racist videos. I understand that 100%. That's a terrible thing... But the whole thing is so massively overblown.

Kjellberg added: "Should everyone on the whole platform be affected because of five racist dudes? That just doesn't make sense, to me at least."

In a subsequent video, called "Can we save YouTube?", Kjellberg appealed directly to the companies who have walked away from YouTube. "If you want a more authentic way of doing [advertising], you can't find it. It doesn't exist," he said. "We can talk directly to an audience that listens to us, that cares about what we say, and that trusts us. If you're scared about your ads showing up in the wrong place, you can see through analytics exactly where your money is being spent.

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