Jenna Marbles leaves YouTube following racism allegations

Virginia Glaze

Long-time YouTuber Jenna Marbles has explained her decision to private many of her older videos following accusations of racist behavior and blackface against the star, which she addressed in a tearful video on June 25.

Jenna Marbles is one of YouTube’s most popular content creators, boasting over 20 million subscribers on the platform due to her hilarious, over-the-top content that she’s been posting for over ten years.

Marbles is also known for not getting into the drama that seems to permeate the YouTube scene, with many fans calling her an “unproblematic queen” — but in wake of many callouts against top online entertainers for past offenses, she has now spoken out about her own history.

Jenna Marbles with boyfriend
Jenna Marbles, pictured here with longtime boyfriend Julien Solomita, has been on YouTube for over ten years.

Marbles uploaded a heartfelt video on June 25 discussing her older content, explaining that she wanted to address a few videos in particular that had offended viewers, which have since been set to private.

Specifically, the YouTuber brought up a video from 2011 parodying rapper Nicki Minaj, where she wore dark tan foundation and a pink wig. Marbles explained that the makeup matched her tan, as seen after she took her wig off at the end of the video, but noted that an argument from her side paled in comparison to the hurt she may have caused regardless of her intentions.

“I don’t know how else to say this, but it doesn’t matter,” she said. “Because all that matters is that people were offended and it hurt them, and for that, I am so unbelievably sorry. This isn’t okay, and it hasn’t existed on the internet for a long time because it’s not okay.”

Jenna Marbles Nicki Minaj impersonation
Jenna Marbles came under fire for an older video where she parodied rapper Nicki Minaj, as seen here.

Marbles went on to address another video made in 2011 that appeared to mock Asian languages, showing the star wearing a rice hat and long mustache.

“It’s inexcusable, and it’s not okay,” she continued. “I’m incredibly sorry if this offended you. Then, now, whenever. It doesn’t need to exist.”

The star also dissected an upload from 2012 where she went on a self-described “sl*t-shaming rant,” and admitted that she’d privated videos poking fun at gender-prescribing behavior, going on to announce that she would be taking an indefinite hiatus from uploading regular content.

“For now, I just can’t exist on this channel,” she said through tears. “…I think I’m just going to move on from this channel for now. I don’t know if that’s forever, I don’t know how long that’s gonna be. I wanna make sure the things I put into the world are not hurting anyone.”

Twitter later erupted with the news, with many fans expressing shock and dismay that Marbles was seemingly pressured into leaving YouTube over her older videos.

This is far from the first time Marbles has addressed backlash from her content; the star also came forward with an apology video in late February regarding a previous upload where she’d strapped her dogs into the back of her car with a special harness made for travel.

After being called out for fans for potentially hurting the animals, Marbles took to YouTube to deeply apologize for the situation and explained that she was “just trying to do the best thing that we can.”

Jenna Marbles dog car harness
Jenna Marbles took to YouTube in late February to apologize after viewers expressed concern over a car harness she’d tested out on her dogs. Both her apology video and the original upload have been deleted.

Marbles has yet to speak further on the situation on her other social media platforms in wake of her latest video.

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