One of the most popular YouTubers, David Dobrik, is coming under fire. Dobrik is the creator of the YouTube supergroup “Vlog Squad”. Their channel created four and a half minute videos of pranks, celebrity cameos, and “bits”. The Vlog Squad had a cult-like following, with record numbers of views and massive sponsorships. Dobrik had held a major influence over the other members of his blog squad because any association with him online could result in the members increasing their own social media following.
After appearing in a David Dobrik video, it would be expected to gain a massive following individually. This created an imbalanced power dynamic, leading Vlog Squad members to do whatever it takes to please David. No one wanted to risk being eliminated from the group.
A former Vlog squad member, Seth Francois, has since unveiled the racism and sexual abuse that he encountered within the group. Seth was one of the only Black creators ever featured on David’s channel and felt he was tokenized and preyed upon specifically because of his race. Videos have been resurfaced of so-called pranks and which Seth opens a refrigerator full of watermelons, to which David and other Vlog Squad members hysterically laugh in the background.
Seth compiled a montage of Vlog Squad doing blackface, David Dobrik, and other members of his crew saying the n-word, and juxtaposed it with their performative activism during the Black Lives Matter Protest videos. One particular incident caught media attention, in which Seth recalls being sexually assaulted in a video.
In the June 2017 vlog “HE THOUGHT HE WAS KISSING HER!! (SUPER CRINGE)” Seth was specifically invited over to partake in a “bit”. Seth was told he would be blindfolded and kissing female member Corrina Kopf. Corrina would be wearing a mask of an old man, so it would feel different when he kissed her. When Seth opened his eyes, it was revealed he was kissing Jason Nash, who at the time was a 44-year-old male. Seth called in on the popular podcast “H3H3 Frenemies” to discuss the incident with fellow Youtubers Trisha Paytas and Eithan Klein.
Since Seth’s exposing videos, other damning allegations against Dobrik have come out. A Business Insider article detailed an anonymous report of a fan who was sexually assaulted by a member of the Vlog Squad in one of David’s videos. A group of young girls was given alcohol despite not being a legal drinking age. They were coerced into engaging in group sex with a member of Vlog Squad named “Durte Dom”. The anonymous accuser, who went by the alias “Hannah” was so intoxicated that she does not recall ever leaving her dorm room, much less engaging in sex.
In David’s vlog, she can be seen being held to stand upright because she was too intoxicated to herself. Other Tiktokers have come out with extremely similar stories of their experiences with Vlog Squad members. Dobrik made an unbelievable apology video called “Let’s Talk”, which ironically had the likes and comments turned off.
Since these allegations, Dobrik has been dropped by Audible, Dollar Shave Club, HBO MAx, Hello Fresh, Facebook, and DoorDash. Dobrik has also stepped down as the co-owner of the app Dispo.