Jenna Marbles on Making a YouTube Faux Pas

/ Apr 11, 2014

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When you’re creating content for millions of viewers, it’s inevitable that you’re going to piss someone off. With over 13 million subscribers to her YouTube channel, Jenna Marbles had some internet criticism to spill on “Ear Biscuits with Rhett & Link.”

Everyone knows that “with great power comes great responsibility” (thanks to either Voltaire or Stan Lee). When you have a mass following on YouTube like Jenna Marbles, sending a positive message to your viewers may begin to feel more like a priority. “You get reminded that you have social responsibility to…your audience,” Jenna described the impetus behind her most controversial video, “Things That I Don’t Understand About Girls Part 2: Slut Edition.”

“I really wanted to make that video because I felt very saturated with this very sexy-sex thing going on,” she explained, referring to images that young girls are fed early on about their sexualized bodies. Mass media tends to encourage women to be sexy for men, and Jenna wanted to send her viewers (largely adolescent girls) the message they don’t have to play into this hype. Unfortunately, as Jenna described, “It went horribly wrong.”

Audience ended up taking Jenna’s video as “slut shaming” and “victim blaming.” Lots of negative feedback appeared on YouTube, and Jenna was taken genuinely aback. Among the many ways to respond to internet criticism, Jenna chose to keep relatively quiet. Though she was very upset about peoples’ reactions to her video, she “will not delete a video just on principal.” That being said, she declined to make a response video, either.

Instead, Jenna decided to stay off the “slut” topic for a little bit. Though she felt her views were misunderstood, she is unapologetic regarding her true opinions. “I feel the way that I feel about it, and I don’t take back what I said,” she noted, continuing that she will continue making content that is true to herself “whether or not people agree with it.”

Her “true opinion” was that monogamy is cool and that there is no need to prove yourself by sleeping with a lot of guys. Jenna noted wishing she’d put some kind of disclaimer on her video, clarifying that if you are an adult who is comfortable with your body and yourself, you can do whatever you want — this video is for young women who may feel the need to sleep around for the wrong reasons. However, lady Marbles isn’t about taking pains to explain herself. When your YouTube personality focuses on baring your true self, you shouldn’t have to.

Jenna got into more detail about her massive influence and jump to YouTube stardom with Rhett & Link on “Ear Biscuits,” so tune in if you want to learn more about the “internet powerhouse.”

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  • The average person is an idiot, and half the population is stupider than that. It’s inevitable that people will circle-kneejerk over any hot-button topic.


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