‘I’m An Idiot’: Pewdiepie Apologises For Saying N-Word On Stream

‘I’m An Idiot’: Pewdiepie Apologises For Saying N-Word On Stream

YouTube’s biggest star uploaded a video today where he apologised for casually dropping the N-word during a Battlegrounds stream last weekend. “I should know better,” Kjellberg said. “I can’t keep messing up like this.”

The video, which is titled “My Response”, is short and has no jokes:

“You probably won’t believe this when I say this, but, whenever I go online and I hear other players use the same kind of language that I did, I always find it extremely immature and stupid,” Kjellberg said. “And I hate how I now personally fed into that part of gaming as well.

“It was something that I said in the heat of the moment. I said the worst word I could possibly think of, and it just sort of slipped out. I’m not going to make any excuses for why it did, because there are no excuses for it. I’m disappointed in myself, because it seems like I’ve learned nothing from all these past controversies. And it’s not that I think I can say or do whatever I want and get away with it. I’m just an idiot. But that doesn’t make what I said, or how I said it, OK.”

Kjellberg then goes on to say that he’s sorry if he hurt or disappointed anyone, and vows to improve himself for the sake of people who look up to him.

We’ll see if this one sticks — Kjellberg has apologised or promised to walk back some of his shock humour a couple of times this year, only to mess up or undermine what he says not long afterward.

Kjellberg’s prior usage of the N-word had YouTube on edge over the past couple of days, as people feared that the actions of the most visible channel might impact the platform as a whole. At least one studio, the makers of Firewatch, responded to the incident by taking down a video Kjellberg made of their game — and said they would not allow him to play any future releases on his channel.


  • it seems like I’ve learned nothing from all these past controversies

    This is exactly why this apology is hard to take at face value. Because we’ve heard it before, the same apology, the same promise to clean up his act, only for it to happen again sometimes even only a week or two later.

    I have friends who produce Youtube content for a living. The adpocalypse, another disaster triggered by Kjellberg, pushed them into the red. Every time Kjellberg does something like this, it hurts good people trying to make a living.

    I really hope, for the sake of good content makers everywhere, that Kjellberg means it this time. But I’m not holding my breath.

  • I like Louis CK’s stand up piece on ‘The N-Word’ and these articles have made me re-watch that set numerous times. Thanks

  • Q: Besides an empty apology (again) whst is he actually doing to improve or as penance?

    Did he monetise his apology?

    And if it is a purely empty apology… wtf did it take so long?

    • You have to be careful how you word things these days. So he probably spent a good long time going over and over again to make sure it was all worded and nothing could be taken out of context.

        • I agree. But as people and the media tend to do, they will take things out of context.

          Plus we all know the way it works. Bash someone on page 1 in large bold text, and then place the retraction on page 10 in small font.

  • I dont think an apology was needed, in the sense that he doesnt mean it (the apology). Any person who utters a word like that under his breath, knows what they are doing, it means they deem it as acceptable and uses it often. Its not something that slips out.

    You cant apology for being yourself and showing your true colours. I am thoroughly over the amount of games who let slip such a word or sexist comments. I dont expect apologies, I expect them to look at a calendar and understand what year it is and grown up.

    • I’ve grown up around people who have a trouble cursing. when you’re angry anything can be said out of rage and being a game there is no meaning to it?? its just a “bad” word to fill the verge of you flipping out? ive watched him for years, he has said many thing c*nt, w**ker, b**ch, sl*t, jew, rapest and other shit. why should ONE whole word be a bring down of social media/ i think people should stop being pussys.

      • ALL those words are unforgivable. They are all words used to demonise someone with long history of abuse attached. W**ker (being on a lesser scale). I am not sure who is worse people who have to take THEIR frustrations out by using derogative words harmful to OTHERS. Or people who watch said people and think there is nothing wrong.

        Its frankly pathetic if the only way someone can release their frustrations, is using words like that. they really need a better command of the English language.

        • I have reasonable command of english and it’s always more of an impact to call someone a “c**t” over some other, lesser, insult. I mean, “doodle head” and “stupid face” do have their uses, but they don’t have the same punch.

  • Pewdiepie needed to call out his defenders in this apology. If he has toxic people who defend this shit and he is serious about it he needs to risk a loss of subscribers. This act would go a long way in how many people see his apologies and accept them in my opinion.

  • He’s an asshole but I still like him. It’s sad that he can’t be as genuine as he used to be now that he’s an important representation of youtube.

  • I don’t understand how celebrities can keep dropping the line “sorry if I offended anyone” during these public mea culpas.

    The only way to take this is that they’re not sorry if no offence was caused, which means they think their behaviour is completely fine.

    • It’s a standard non-apology apology.

      It seems to be a way to apologise and avoid any potential legal repercussions. It’s probably way celebrities and politicians use that style of apology in statements.

    • I think the “if” here is just semantic filler.

      Edit: Blah, I had a kind of armchair point about “if” being correct, but on further thought my point was kind of irrelevant. I do think the “if” was filler, but I also agree that it can imply insincerity.

    • I mean, if no offence was cause then it IS completely fine. If nobody objects to you doing something, then there’s nothing wrong with what you’re doing.

      • If nobody objects to you doing something, then there’s nothing wrong with what you’re doing.

        If I say the N word at a KKK rally, nobody in attendance would be offended. Does that make it okay?

        Also, uttering a racial slur live in front of thousands of people is *definitely* going to offend someone. The “if” is completely redundant.

  • Nothing to get upset about. People use that word all the time. Shows them as a certain type of person, but not worth burning down the internet over.

  • This guy is an absolute dickhead and I’m not going to take it anymore I think he should have his whole YouTube channel removed even though he keep getting copyright strikes filed against him.

  • I think this was supposed to be in reply to my reply? I had an edit awaiting moderation that wasn’t approved when you wrote this, but to reiterate; on further thought I realised the point I was making was “armchairy” and irrelevant for the reasons you’ve just outlined.

    • Yep, comments are acting screwy for some reason.

      I agree that it probably wasn’t an intentional weasel word, but it’s still stupid. Just say “I apologise to everyone I offended” – especially when there’s a 100% probability that you caused offence. Leave the ifs out of it.

  • Given how much the word gets thrown around by the American Hip-Hop/Rap community I find it extremely hard to find it controversial in the least, unless specifically targeted with the intent to cause offence. This case wasn’t targeted against anyone, was said in frustration and was said without the intent to cause offence. In my opinion, intent is 90% of why certain words are considered offensive.

    • dude, he specifically said “what a ni**er”, in rage, directed at a person. In hip hop no one ever says “what a ni**er” like this. It isn’t used as a racial slur, it is used because it was used as a racial slur, and it is done to empower the people who it was used against. This is the old way of using it, the way that suggests that being black is in itself a bad thing.

      Your opinion is invalid. Maybe someone can say something without having the underlying intent to offend, but that doesn’t mean that what they said isn’t offensive. Yeah, in the world we live in some people are really thin-skinned about what offends them, but the word “ni**er”, especially used in this way, by a fucking nordic white person, is totally over the line.

      • So you’re implying that if you’re black then you get a free pass on the word, but if you’re white then it’s over the line? Sounds like double standards to me. Ohh and you’re incorrect about no one in hip hop using the n-word in that context, Jay Z’s latest album proves you wrong on that one as well as many other hip hop artists like Kendrick, Nicki Minaj, Snoop Dogg. Double standards if i’ve ever seen it, not that i care though *sips tea*

      • I stand corrected. He used it in an offensive way, but not with the intent to incite race hate. That’s more what I was getting at. He then realised his mistake, and immediately (seconds later) corrected himself. That’s pretty fare. Just like some people who are used to swearing a lot might accidentally swear in front of children. You often don’t even think about it. PDP is making a conscious effort to move away from that and it’s not something you can magically do overnight

      • no ones opinion is invalid, its an opinion, its his. even if you and 99.9999999999 recurring % of the population dont agree with it, like i dont, an opinion cant be invalid.

        • Opinions can be invalid if based on objectively wrong information. Here however it’s based on subjective information. The question is – has the word become overused by popular media (music) and lost it’s impact? Does an insult still carry the same weight depending on who used it and who they used it against? These are all subjective

          • even if an opinion is based on objectively wrong information, the opinion itself isnt invalid. its the opinion someone has formed based on the information they have received (whether it be wrong or right)

          • There’s a difference between opinions and facts. You’re entitled to your own opinions and preferences, but not facts. For example it can be someones “opinion” that Blue is the best colour, but it cannot be someones “opinion” that the world is flat as it’s objectively incorrect. Opinions should, in general, be based on some logic and be able to be backed up in some way. If your opinion is easily dismissed by facts, it is in fact, invalid. You can still have that opinion, but nobody has to take it seriously.

          • from the dictionary
            a view or judgement formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge.

            all im saying is its irrelevant to what the facts say. there fore and opinion in itself cant be invalid.

          • valid
            (of an argument or point) having a sound basis in logic or fact; reasonable or cogent.

          • invalid2
            (especially of an argument, statement, or theory) not true because based on erroneous information or unsound reasoning.

          • yes, i know what valid and invalid means, but their meaning doesnt negate the meaning of the word ‘opinion’ and it not needing to be based on correct knowledge and facts.

  • I’m in two minds about this issue in regards to his apology, clearly it was a dumb knee jerk reaction during the live stream to yell out the hard N-word (only writing ‘N’ due to T&C’s, i actually don’t care about the word itself) and i personally wouldn’t use it in that conext. I feel as though an apology wasn’t needed as it’s not actually hurting anyone per’se. People can get offended for sure, but it’s not like anyone’s actually going to care. I personally enjoy his videos and humour as it relates to my estranged humour in itself, ultimately though it comes down to the consequences it has on his business. Only other gripe is how the word is basically a double standard in todays society. If you’re white the word is almost immediately offensive, but if you’re black then it’s not as impactful, as opposed to a black man saying the C-word in regards to a white person. Not only this but as stated above, how the media (in particular rap and hip hop) potray that particular word.

    At the end of the day, this really won’t change anything and it’s purely just the flavour of the week. It is what it is.

  • Apparently a very unpopular opinion, but I thought his apology came from a sincere place.

    Should have added a “don’t defend my use of the word, or spam racism shit in the Firewatch steam forums” but it was alright for what it was.

  • Ride forth white knights as we cleanse the world of those who drop the n bomb!!! We shall change society together for the better by calling out these injustices!!! We speak for the black community because we are white!!!

    • this guy gets it.
      im still firm that people everywhere on the internet need to be held accountable for what they say and share on the internet, whether it be fines, jail time, public lashings, whatever. internet anonymity needs to end, that’s the only way you will stop people from running at the mouth without paying for being a dick.

      • We shall crush those who make mistakes and anyone who voices an opinion behind anonymity shall be publicly shamed! We are good people look at us being good people!!! Let us welcome this age of cyber dystopian McCarthyism with a sacrifice to buzzfeed

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