PewDiePie has opened up about why the Chinese Internet has shut him out, and the reason is rather surreal.
The Swedish YouTuber – real name Felix Kjellberg – has revealed Chinese authorities took issue with him after one of his vids showed president Xi Jinping being likened to Winnie the Pooh during the Hong Kong protests.
The video in question was an episode of Meme Review which focused on the Hong Kong protests and China, which of course took a look at the many, many memes the activists have sparked.
You can watch the clip for yourself below:
Speaking to his followers, PewDiePie explained:
Well boys, we did it. I’m banned from China, That’s right (laughs), after I spoke about the Hong Kong protests, and showed their leader being mocked for looking like Winnie the Pooh, I got banned from China.
That’s right. Now if you search anything PewDiePie related on any Reddit related forum in China or a YouTube related video, it will just be completely blank.
I’m laughing, but yeah I’m sorry if you’re in China and try to watch my videos. That kinda sucks.
It’s just kinda funny, like I knew it was going to happen. The music artist Zedd got banned in China just because he liked a South Park tweet, so obviously me talking about the Hong Kong memes was going to get me banned.
Far more significant than just a silly meme, Winnie the Pooh has become a symbol of resistance and protest in China, with activists and bloggers using the fictional teddy to challenge President Xi and the Communist Party.
Chinese authorities have been working frantically to remove pictures of memes from social media which collate the president with the classic children’s book character.
President Xi is reportedly extremely self conscious about being compared to the honey loving bear, with the likeness first noted during a US visit in 2013. A photograph of President Xi and then President Barack Obama led to many people noting how the pair resembled Winnie and Tigger.
And PewDiepie is far from the only one to be banished. Just last month, US TV station HBO was after comedian John Oliver mocked Xi’s supposed anguish over the Winnie the Pooh comparisons.
As reported by The Hollywood Reporter, China denied the release of Christopher Robin, a film which features the little yellow bear and his one hundred acre wood friends.
If you have a story you want to tell send it to UNILAD via [email protected]
Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.