YouTube Demonetizes Russell Brand Over Alleged Sexual Misconduct From Decade Ago

Brand faces accusations from at least four women.
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 07: Russell Brand is seen on February 07, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.
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YouTube suspended actor and comedian Russell Brand from making money on the platform on Tuesday, days after several women accused him of sexual assault over a decade ago in what Brand has called a “coordinated attack.”

Brand’s channel with 6.6 million subscribers has been suspended from monetization “following serious allegations against the creator,” YouTube said.

The Google-owned social media platform’s decision means Brand can no longer make money from YouTube ads on his videos. Brand’s other smaller channels with several hundred thousand subscribers were also suspended from monetization. It is not clear how long the suspensions will last.

YouTube said Brand was suspended for violating YouTube’s “creator responsibility policy.

“If a creator’s off-platform behavior harms our users, employees or ecosystem, we take action to protect the community,” a YouTube spokesperson said.

Brand, 48, denies four unnamed women’s allegations of sexual assault that were published in a joint investigation by British outlets The Times, Sunday Times, and Channel 4 television on Saturday. The women made their allegations after the outlets reached out to them. The assaults allegedly took place between 2006 and 2013.

One of the accusers claims she was sexually assaulted by Brand when she was 16, the legal age of consent in the U.K., during a relationship with him. Another woman claims Brand raped her in Los Angeles in 2012.

On Monday, London’s police force said it had received a fresh sexual assault claim against Brand “alleged to have taken place in Soho in central London in 2003.”

Brand was a major television and radio star in Britain in the early 2000s. He has written memoirs opening up about his struggles with drugs and alcohol, and he appeared in several Hollywood movies, including “Forgetting Sarah Marshall.” Brand was also married to pop star Katy Perry between 2010 and 2012.

Brand said “I absolutely refute” what he described as “very serious allegations” against him in a YouTube video on his channel on Friday.

“As I’ve written about extensively in my books, I was very, very promiscuous. Now during that time of promiscuity, the relationships I had were absolutely, always consensual,” Brand said in the video. Brand added that the allegations make him “question, is there another agenda at play, particularly when we’ve seen coordinated media attacks before.”


YouTube’s decision sparked immediate criticism, including from The Daily Wire’s podcast hosts and co-founder.

“Terrible decision. Terrible precedent. Social platforms should not act as extra-legal arbiters of guilt and innocence. These companies think they’re governments. Or gods,” Jeremy Boreing, co-founder of The Daily Wire, posted on X.

“Allegations are now convictions in the court of social media, complete with removal of all income,” posted Daily Wire host Ben Shapiro on X.

“This is insane. YouTube is demonetizing all of Brand’s accounts based on unproven allegations made in the media. He hasn’t even been criminally charged with anything. The precedent being set here is extremely bad,” posted Daily Wire host Matt Walsh.

Brand also hosts a show on Rumble, a video-sharing platform that aims to fight cancel culture, where his channel has 1.4 million followers.

He has continued to perform as a stand-up comedian. Brand’s current tour included a show before 2,000 people in London on Saturday. However, promoters said the rest of his comedy tour dates, including a show that was set for Tuesday, have been postponed after the allegations.

Brand’s publisher has also reportedly paused its work with him. The publisher had been set to publish Brand’s guide to overcoming addiction in December.

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