YouTube Stars Who Were Banned

It actually doesn't take much for a YouTube star to get banned. The video-sharing site employs a three strikes policy by which users are warned twice about violating their Community Guidelines. If a third infraction occurs within three months (each strikes expires after three months — think of it like getting points on your license), they're gone, supposedly for life.  

However, many on this list suffered the dreaded ban only to reinvent themselves on a new channel with a new username or through loopholes like one in which they don't technically own a channel even if they're clearly the driving force behind it.

YouTube doesn't make a big deal out of enforcing bans, which are an everyday occurrence at the digital media giant. But when a star of the platform gets the boot, people notice. Though roughly half of the folks on this list lived to vlog another day, they were definitely gone at some point — whether it was for using their page for something as nefarious as criminal behavior or for violating the aforementioned Community Guidelines. These are the stars who got banned from YouTube.

There is no bottom for weird on the internet

We're starting out with an absolutely terrible one here, just so we can quickly get it out of the way and move on. In 2016, Gizmodo published a story about YouTuber bootsmade4crushing. The anonymous user's channel featured "crush" videos, which highlight a fetish in which only the subject's feet are seen — in this case, clad in heavy boots — crushing inanimate objects like fruit, toys, electronics, or whatever that thing is in the photo above (Full disclosure: that is not photo of bootsmade4crushing — as far as we know.)

However, Gizmodo also discovered that bootsmade4crushing operated a since-deleted Tumblr account, used to direct viewers to another YouTube account, boots666, which hosted "unlisted" videos of presumably the same person stomping small animals and insects to death. Yeah, we said it was terrible.

After the Gizmodo story, boots666 deleted the Tumblr account and made all of its uploads private. However, shortly after that, both the boots666 and bootsmade4crushing channels were terminated "due to multiple or severe violations of YouTube's policy on violence." It's unclear whether the anonymous user behind the heinous channel respawned on one of the many, many other "crushing" channels YouTube still hosts, but, for the sake of humanity, we sure hope not.

Freedom of expression has limits on YouTube

Though YouTube prides itself on allowing "freedom of expression" by opting for temporary warnings and demonetization penalties for users who violate their Community Guidelines, they sometimes take swifter action. In the case of Veronica Bouchard a.k.a. Evalion, YouTube banned the young Canadian's account after she was called out by another prominent YouTuber, Leafyishere, in his video, "THE MOST RACIST GIRL ON ALL OF YOUTUBE EVER," according to the Daily Mail.

Leafyishere's video compiled since-deleted clips of Bouchard praising Adolf Hitler, singing happy birthday to him over swastika cupcakes, and teaching lessons on how to "identify Jews." It's cringeworthy stuff to say the least, and it was enough to get Bouchard booted from her own channel for good. However, the apparent hate-monger lives on in internet infamy via tribute pages.   

In her own defense, Bouchard, who was 19 years old at the time, told Canada's Global News that she thought the videos were "funny," and that she was attempting to tell "the German side of Adolf Hitler"— whatever that means. But then she also said that she believes races shouldn't mix and that Canada "should be white." At this point, we're not sure what's sadder: this young woman's seriously misguided worldview or that fact that she had over 40,000 subscribers at the time of her channel's termination.

A party animal with a dark past

Like Evalion's channel, David's Farm exists on YouTube now only in re-uploads. But, to paint a picture of what occurred on this channel, you need only envision a mashup of Jackass and the most low-rent demolition derby humanly possible. That was the scene at David Rock's farm near Lucan, Ontario where he hosted visitors young and old getting down in the dirt at a sort of redneck summer camp — which he turned into a wildly popular YouTube channel.

According to Jalopnik, Rock claimed he made $15,000 a month from YouTube — at his peak popularity, he had 93,000 subscribers and over 90 million total views. But Rock also had a shady past, including a 1991 conviction for "sexual interference, sexual assault, making obscene photos and one count of administering a noxious thing involving kids," according to The London Free Press.

The revelation of his past became problematic for Rock in late 2010 after his interview with journalist Mary Garafalo, during which he claimed he was somehow cured of pedophilia in 1998. Following the broadcast, Garofalo claimed YouTube's parent company, Google, said that they were "examining our policies in thinking about situations like these."

By December 2010, Rock was gone from the platform, according to this video he uploaded to BlipTV, which is ironically still on YouTube. Rock, who is also a nudist, admitted to posting "lots of nude videos on YouTube" and claimed that he was eventually banned after Garofalo "flagged" two of his videos. YouTube then enforced a third strike and termination, citing a video called, "naked snowmobiler dave."

Rock later made headlines again in 2016 when he was convicted of "possessing child pornography" and sentenced to nine months in prison. He was also registered as a sex offender for life.

Throwing the system a Durv-ball

A young British YouTuber named Dylan McEvoy, who goes by Durv online, built his impressive following of over 1.4 million subscribers and 125 million overall views using a widely criticized tactic of publishing clickbait headlines and allegedly staging phony gift card giveaways. Though both of those practices are prohibited via YouTube's Community Guidelines, it was actually their ban on violence that got Durv banned, according to his video "i can't take it anymore." Durv didn't specifically cite the videos that got him banned, though he did tell fellow YouTuber, Kavos, in an interview, "The most harmful thing was probably a kid throwing a snowball at a car."

Fortunately for Durv, he found his way around the Community Guidelines once more when he took over his brother's channel, renamed it — wait for it — Durv, and got back to uploading just a few months after his ban. In the description of his comeback video, "Dear YouTube, I'm back...," Durv carefully points out that his brother is "still the owner" of the channel, and he's simply letting Durv post on it because he "wasn't even going to use it anymore." Uh huh.

Anyway, as of this writing, Durv's got a long way to go: In a little over a year, he's only racked up just over 6,000 subscribers, but they have produced an impressive 419,033 views. Might be time to bust out those gift cards again.

Drama can be a successful business model

Daniel Keem, a.k.a DJ Keemstar, is one of the most controversial figures on YouTube. According to the YouTube-obsessed blog, We The Unicorns, Keem burst onto the scene thanks to a Halo 3 stream in which he trash-talked his opponents so effectively that he became an instant celebrity. Yep, that's how this YouTube star was born!

Anyway, his online image didn't improve from there, although it did increase in popularity thanks to his show, Drama Alert, which is a breaking news program of sorts for major beefs between YouTubers. However, according to a petition, Keemstar doesn't just report of the drama, he causes it.

The petition, signed by nearly 60,000 people, claims Keem has a long history of harassment, false accusations, racism, and just general grossness that has contributed to "drama and terror among the Youtube community." But what lands Keem on this list is the claim that he had two channels previously terminated, which should have triggered his lifetime ban.

Keem allegedly gets around this using the same maneuver as the aforementioned Durv, by claiming no ownership to the two channels he clearly operates.

As for whether or not it's true that Keem had channels terminated, it's unclear. But on the about page of his KEEMSTRIKE channel, it is explicitly stated that Keem "does not own, access, or possess any part of this channel." We're not sure why a disclaimer like that would be necessary if not to circumvent the ban.

No love for GoldGlove

YouTubers who stream video games make up a huge swath of the platform's user community. These users can build subscriber bases that are often extremely niche — we're talking fans of a specific games — but they are large and dedicated nonetheless. Brennon O'Neill, who goes by the alias GoldGloveTV, is one such YouTuber.

As of this writing, O'Neill boasts a strong following of over 1.3 million subscribers who have garnered him a staggering 323,082,349 views, but it hasn't all been smooth sailing. Back in 2010, O'Neill tweeted about his account being terminated. It happened again in June 2014, when he once again alerted fans via Twitter that his channels were banned "due to a flaw in the automated YouTube flagging system."

But then two days after that second tweet, O'Neill uploaded a video that claimed his account was terminated "due to copyright claims." On the same day, he uploaded another video where he wrote in the description that his account was terminated "due to my f*****g w***e of a girlfriend who did it on purpose." Oof.

We're not sure exactly why this guy has had so many issues with his account being taken down and apparently restored, but the hassle seems to be worth it. According to Naibuzz, between his YouTube and Twitch channel (where he also streams video gameplay), he's amassed a net worth of $860,000.

Banned and back again

William Jacobson may not be considered a YouTube star per se, but the Cornell University law professor was definitely popular in the conservative corners of the video-sharing site when his channel, Legal Insurrection, was terminated.

Though the channel was restored within a day, Jacobson did not take the termination lightly, vowing to take action against YouTube within their own appeals process and in court. So, why was his page terminated in the first place? Well, that gets into the weeds a bit, but the short version is he used excerpts from speeches given at a conference about Israel, which was staged by a group called MLA. Jacobson says that within MLA are "anti-Israel activists," who claimed copyright ownership of the excerpts.

"Clearly this was a politically motivated move," Jacobson told Fox News of what he believed were bogus copyright claims. "This is an attempt to silence our reporting on a matter of great public importance."

Jacobson later explained on The Lars Larson Show that he believed YouTube's three strikes policy was automatically enforced when MLA filed three individual copyright claims against him simultaneously. He then shifted into full conspiracy theorist mode when he suggested, "I gotta believe if we were a prominent liberal website, somehow I don't think we would have been shut down. I can't prove it. That's just my gut." Hopefully there's no copyright on making your own tin foil hat.

Banned theft auto

As some YouTube stars may remember, GTA V community member Sernandoe was temporarily banned from the platform in early 2018. For those not in the know, the "GTA V community" refers to a subset of users who post content exclusively related to that video game — we're talking streaming gameplay, cheat codes, easter eggs, mods, pranks, literally any kind of content surrounding the game. Sernandoe is one of the community's most prominent members, with 2.7 million subscribers and over 450 million views.

He's also a guy who has a reputation for posting clickbait in order to grow his subscriber base, like the time he claimed someone at Rockstar Games sent him an early copy of Grand Theft Auto VI. This reputation led many other YouTubers to speculate that Sernandoe was terminated due to the apparent clickbait.

But when Sernandoe's channel was restored in March 2018 after about three months in limbo, he cleared everything up with an explanation video in which he said he was flagged and banned over three videos related to phony "money-generating" sites for the game that were possibly giving users viruses. We lost you, huh? Well, apparently there are websites that claim to show you how to get endless money in GTA V, which Sernandoe claims he was trying to warn fans against, but which he also claims YouTube's "bots" errantly flagged as violating the Community Guidelines.

Phew, that was a lot, wasn't it? Let's move on.

Why? Just why?

Greg Chism was the operator of Toy Freaks, a once hugely popular destination for over 8.5 million subscribers, which was also "among the top 100 most-viewed channels on YouTube," according to Variety. That is until Toy Freaks got swept up in the platform's push to eradicate disturbing content either aimed at or involving young children, specifically on the YouTube Kids app.  

According to BuzzFeed, Chism routinely posted videos of his adolescent daughters "screaming in fear, bathing, pretending to be babies, spitting up food, being force-fed, and 'peeing.'" It was content that people had apparently been complaining about for years that only just landed on YouTube's radar with their new enforcement efforts.

Chism issued a statement to the site, explaining that his channels — he had three — were banned for accidentally allowing content on the YouTube Kids app. But Chism also told Variety that his content being flagged "reinforces my faith in the YouTube community." He went on to thank his viewers on behalf of himself and his daughters and said that the channel was an "opportunity to develop their creativity and self-confidence over the past few years."

Chism concluded his statement by saying, "While it is disturbing to me that anyone would find inappropriate pleasure in our video skits, I deeply appreciate YouTube's concerns for my family and I could not be happier with having had this remarkable experience."

Wow, what a graceful exit for the YouTube star who likely made a fortune exploiting his own children!