Turns out PewDiePie Raises a Ton of Money for Charity
While most of the world is still reeling from the idea that you can both make money as a gamer and as a YouTuber, Felix Kjelberg (aka PewDiePie) has gone a step further and can boast more subscribers than Psy, Gaga, and Justin Bieber combined.
Sitting squarely at the helm of the biggest and fastest-growing channel on YouTube, the news broke earlier this month via Swedish magazine Expressen that Kjelberg's company Pewdie Productions reported revenues of over 63.7 million kr in 2014 which translates to $7.4 million in USD.
Of course, that's not what the YouTube star would have you remember.
“It seems like the whole world cares more about how much money I make than I do myself. We did raise a million dollars for charity - very few articles picked up on that - but here it is everywhere how much money I make."
And that's true. Why get so angry about one man making a success doing what he likes to do?
Particularly when he uses his not insignificant star power for good.
As early as 2012 (incidentally the same year Kjelberg created Pewdie Productions), PewDiePie won an online contest for King of the World and promptly donated his $10,000 cash winnings to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).
Between the WWF and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, PewDiePie has given away more than $40,000.
To celebrate 10 million subscribers in 2013, PewDiePie began a charity campaign for Charity: Water and pledged to personally donate $1 for every 500 views of his video up to $10,000. His initial goal for the campaign was for $250,000 but managed to raise $446,462 by the end of the campaign.
And in 2014, Kjelberg did it again, celebrating 25 million subscribers by running a charity campaign for Save the Children through a number of different outlets including Indiegogo. Again the goal was set for $250,000 this time the end results were more than double the initial goal.
According to Save the Children:
PewDiePie and the Bro Army raised more than $630,000 for Save the Children through a crowdfundraiser on Indiegogo, a gaming bundle on The Humble Bundle, live-streams on twitch and an anonymous matching donation of $150,000! On behalf of Save the Children and all of the children you have helped us reach, BROFIST!
As time goes on, PewDiePie fully intends on continuing to such drives, although definitely in moderation.
So, while Kjelberg's PewDiePie persona is a rather divisive one, even among gamers - what many consider to be the top of the entertainer charts comes off as juvenile and stupid to others - it's nearly impossible not to recognize a decent, hard-working, and incredibly down-to-earth guy behind the screaming and the sex jokes.
It's good to be able to recognize someone for more than just his paycheck. Pewds has got his heart in the right place.