YouTube blocks Russell Brand from earning revenue after ‘violating policy’

YouTube has blocked Russell Brand from making money from his channel in light of the allegations of sexual assault against him.

The suspension, for “violating its policy”, will still allow Brand to upload videos to his 6.6 million followers, but he will not profit from advertising.

In a statement, YouTube said: “We have suspended monetisation on Russell Brand’s channel for violating our Creator Responsibility policy. If a creator’s off-platform behaviour harms our users, employees or ecosystem, we take action to protect the community.”

Russell Brand used his YouTube channel to protest his innocence (PA Wire)
Russell Brand used his YouTube channel to protest his innocence (PA Wire)

The company said that it had suspended Brand’s channel from the YouTube Partner Program “following serious allegations against the creator. This action means the channel is no longer able to monetise on YouTube”.

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The decision applies to all channels that may be owned or operated by the comedian, it added.

Filming from a converted pub in an Oxfordshire village, Brand has developed a loyal fanbase on his Joe Rogan-esque channel where he dissects UFO sightings and “shadowy” conspiracy theories including if a Bill Gates-built laser started the Hawaii wildfires.

Formerly a luvvy of the UK left wing, Brand peaked with his infamous Miliband “you gotta vote Labour” interview believing he could swing the hotly-contested 2015 election after instructing fans to not vote.

But Brand’s tone has transformed after he recently hailed Donald Trump’s “bezerker” qualities helping secure headline-grabbing guests from the American right including former Fox host Tucker Carlson, men’s rights writer Jordan Peterson and Candace Owens, who is currently banned from YouTube for hate speech against the LGBT+ community.

Brand’s channel has millions of followers (YouTube/PA Wire)
Brand’s channel has millions of followers (YouTube/PA Wire)

Recent titles of videos include “This Is What They’re Not Telling You About Russia”, “So This Is What They’ve Been Hiding”, “It’s Official: They Lied”, “Are They Just Puppets?”, and “So they DO Run the World.” He took to the channel to refute the allegations speaking directly to his millions of followers.

Brand still has a presence on video platform Rumble, where his channel has 1.4 million followers and he hosts a weekly live show, but there was no new episode on Monday. His most recent video on Rumble is the short clip from Friday when he denied the allegations against him which were published the following day.

The Rumble channel description reads: “Everybody knows that the old ideas won’t help us. Religion is dead. Capitalism is dead. Communism is dead. Where will the answers of the next century lie? Particularly, when we’re facing a mental health epidemic and ecological meltdown.”

He also has a dedicated subscribers’ area on the online community platform Locals, where members can sign up for a minimum $60 (£48) a year – or enter a higher amount if they wish to donate more – in order to access special bonus content from Brand, as well as the opportunity to interact with him directly.

A selection of clips the performer has posted to his channel (YouTube/PA Wire)
A selection of clips the performer has posted to his channel (YouTube/PA Wire)

The YouTube announcement on Tuesday morning comes after the remaining shows on Brand’s Bipolarisation tour were postponed after police announced they were probing another alleged sexual assault in Soho, central London, in 2003.

The 48-year-old has been accused of rape, assault and emotional abuse between 2006 and 2013, when he was at the height of his fame working for the BBC, Channel 4 and starring in Hollywood films. Brand has strongly denied the allegations, which also include claims of controlling, abusive and predatory behaviour.

The Met Police said in a statement on Monday they had received an allegation of sexual assault in 2003.

The force said: “On Sunday September 17, the Met received a report of a sexual assault which was alleged to have taken place in Soho in central London in 2003.

“Officers are in contact with the woman and will be providing her with support.

“We first spoke with The Sunday Times on Saturday September 16 and have since made further approaches to The Sunday Times and Channel 4 to ensure that anyone who believes they have been the victim of a sexual offence is aware of how to report this to the police.”