YouTuber MrBeast rose to stardom by giving away money. He is now dedicating himself to ‘curing’ disabilities, but with it comes a backlash.

  • MrBeast became the world’s biggest YouTuber by giving away millions of dollars worth of crafted videos.
  • It has recently focused on providing medical assistance to people with disabilities, which has caused a backlash.
  • Some accuse him of exploiting people for influence and misrepresenting disability communities.

“I just like helping people,” MrBeast wrote in one of his most recent posts. tweets.

The YouTube megastar, with 152 million subscribers, became the most followed individual creator on the platform building a reputation for performing acts of kindness, often involving a large cash prize.

MrBeast, whose real name is Jimmy Donaldson, began by donating thousands of dollars to small and unsuspecting twitch streamers, documenting their euphoric responses to his generosity on camera. he has since gifted millions of dollars to fans in their main channel challenge-style short videos.

On his secondary channel, beast philanthropyhas launched dozens of humanitarian aid projects, including provide supplies to underserved schools and giving help to ukrainian refugees.

Collectively, these acts have earned him a very positive response as fans said that place him apart from other rich celebrities.

But all this could be changing, as the YouTuber’s newest genre of content has received an increasingly violent backlash, embroiling him in accusations of producing “inspirational porn” and exploiting people for online fame.

Donaldson began posting about providing healthcare to people with disabilities, a significant change from the typical content on his main channel.

Donaldson’s most popular YouTube videos have previously been lighthearted challenge-style tournaments involving fans. His most popular load of all time features 456 contestants taking part in a real-life version of the Netflix series “Squid Game” to compete for $456,000.

in a tweet aware On January 15, Donaldson said that he planned to post something that would “not be anything like” his previous posts. The result was a video in which he said he would be “curing the blindness of 1,000 people.”

He video, posted on January 28, documented people meeting with the YouTuber so he could pay for their cataract surgery to restore their sight, often demonstrating emotional reactions and thanking the YouTuber when their blindfolds were later removed. There were also cash prizes, as Donaldson handed out briefcases he said contained $10,000 to various participants.

Donaldson had previously kept this charitable style of content confined to his philanthropy channel, where his videos they get less than 30 million views each, a huge number by most YouTuber standards, but small by him. After uploading this post to his main YouTube channel, he received 139 million views, in line with the view count for his typical challenge-style content.

Three months later, Donaldson published a similar post video on its main channel, paying for 1,000 people to get hearing aids and also for some participants to have new experiences, like going to a Taylor Swift concert and attending a basketball championship game.

On his philanthropy channel, where the YouTuber had not previously posted any videos directly related to disability or health, he uploaded a similar video. videopaying for 1,000 people’s prosthetics, one day after his hearing aid video went live.

Viewers accuse Donaldson of exploiting people and misrepresenting disability communities

While Donaldson’s cataract surgery video was wildly popular with some viewers, who praised the YouTuber for his generosity, it also caused a wave backlash, like some people wrote that they thought we shouldn’t turn to wealthy influencers to fix widespread social problems like the cost of health care. Others accused Donaldson of paying for the surgeries as a way to make money online. influence and producing popular content.

Dr. Jeffrey Levenson, the ophthalmologist who collaborated with Donaldson on the project, told Insider that he thinks the YouTuber is “probably proud” of the controversy it aroused, adding: “The controversy is a reflection of the world grappling with the question that we must take the moral initiative to resolve this issue once and for all.”

donaldson defended the video itself on Twitter, but it seems Levenson may have been right: he now seems to be leaning towards this type of content, despite the controversy it causes.

YouTuber’s Next video about buying hearing aids for 1,000 people, unsurprisingly, too caused a stir on social mediaas several people, including users who claimed to be deaf, accused him of producing “inspirational porn”, a term coined by disability activist Stella Young in a 2014 Ted Talk defined as the “objectification [of] disabled for the benefit of the non-disabled.

Cryssie Jones, a Canadian-based artist who is deaf, according to her Twitter Biographypointed at a tweet now viral that hearing aids “are not a cure” and “do not automatically restore hearing,” saying that Donaldson’s video does not “represent the real struggles” experienced by many deaf people.

Several users have come to Donaldson’s defense since the video was posted, including Twitter CEO Elon Musk, who wrote, “people definitely shouldn’t be attacked for doing good,” but the YouTuber doesn’t appear to have addressed the most recent controversy. The next day, he uploaded his video titled “I Helped 2,000 Amputees Walk Again.”

Backlash has also started to spill over into other aspects of his reputation. On May 11, after a New York Post report on Donaldson buying homes for his employees went viralresponded to allegations that he may have had ulterior motives behind the purchases, writing“I can only get canceled for giving people a place to live with no strings attached,” on Twitter.

Donaldson’s insistence on extravagant donations gave him his name and fame, but many viewers seem to believe his new format has gone too far, arguing that by focusing on people with disabilities, his altruism is becoming exploitation and performativity.

For more stories like this, check out Insider’s digital culture team coverage here.

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