Why Did the Internet Turn Against YouTuber David Dobrik?
YouTube star David Dobrik has had a pattern of problematic behavior. Here's why he was canceled for only a few months before coming back.
Content warning: This article contains allegations of rape and abuse.
YouTube star David Dobrik, famous for his prank videos and for being a part of the Vlog Squad, came under fire after an Insider investigation revealed a history of sexual assault allegations and a pattern of problematic behavior. Ever since the story broke, the YouTuber has been losing subscribers and sponsorships, and the consequences prompted him to put out an "apology" video.
But despite David attempting to address the controversy, people weren't convinced of his sincerity and still called for the YouTuber to be officially “canceled.” He ended up deciding to take a hiatus from making his viral content. But now he's back. So, what exactly was the story that had everyone turning against David?
Why was David Dobrik canceled?
David Dobrik and his Vlog Squad were under intense scrutiny after an Insider article published an account of rape performed by squad member Durte Dom.
The woman from the Insider story, Hannah, said that she was a sophomore at college when Durte Dom raped her while she was incapacitated by alcohol. The video was apparently for a "threesome bit" that David was involved in along with Dom and other Vlog members.
Following the revelation, former squad member Trisha Paytas revealed that she was there on the night that the alleged rape happened. She said on Twitter that Vlog Squad members Jeff Wittek and Toddy Smith bought the alcohol for the party, a claim that Jeff had previously denied.
Trisha also told The H3 Podcast that since leaving the Vlog Squad, she has had several fans come up to her and tell her about being forced into sexual situations without consent by David, Jason, and Dom. Some of the girls also said they were underage at the time of the incidents.
Other former employees and members of the Vlog Squad also claimed that David was a bully who often pressured people to do things they did not want to do. Ex-squad member Seth Francois detailed an incident surrounding a kissing prank he didn’t consent to.
Also on The H3 Podcast, Seth called out David and Jason Nash for tricking Seth into making out with Jason without his knowledge. “I was supposed to do a make-out scene with Corinna [Kopf] and he was gonna have her in an old man mask and then switched her out with Jason Nash,” Seth explained. “After Jason pulled off his mask, I realized that I was just touched by someone I did not consent to.”
Adding to the sexual assault allegations was also former squad member BigNik, who said that the group was toxic and that he was bullied by David. BigNik also told The H3 Podcast that after years of being the butt of the group’s jokes, he finally told David that he didn’t like being made fun of all the time. David’s response was to cut BigNik out from the squad’s subsequent videos.
David issued a non-apology video.
As allegations mounted, David decided to put out an apology video. In the video titled “Let’s Talk,” for which David turned off the comments and likes-to-dislikes ratio, the YouTuber said that he wanted to address “some conversations that have been going on.”
In the two-minute video, David then did not directly address any of the allegations surrounding him and members of the Vlog Squad.
David also appeared to blame most of the misconduct on people that he said he stopped featuring in his content. “I don’t stand for any kind of misconduct,” he said, “and I’ve been really disappointed in some of my friends, and for that reason, I’ve separated from a lot of them.”
David joined a list of online personalities like Logan Paul and Shane Dawson whose apology videos have done more harm than good.
David Dobrik took a hiatus, but now he's back.
After the extra backlash his non-apology video caused, David Dobrik decided it was time to take a little break from his YouTube posting and pranking. But after he was recently spotted in Hawaii, rumors started swirling that he'd be making his comeback sooner than expected. Corinna Kopf, another Vlog Squad member, also teased that she'd be doing David's podcast this June.
However, David is back sooner than expected. He shared his "Vlog #640" on June 15, in which he surprised his friends (and all his fans). After only a couple of hours back, his video already has almost one million views.
In the video, he shows up at a house in Hawaii, and his friends squeal and laugh. David asks Corinna to share how much money she makes with her OnlyFans account, and they all show off their wealth and antics. Classic David.
If you need support, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673 or visit RAINN.org to chat online one-on-one with a support specialist at any time.