YouTube has temporarily demonetized the channel of beauty influencer James Charles following his admittance to sending sexually explicit messages to minors.
Earlier this month, the 21-year-old admitted to sending sexually explicit messages to two 16-year-old boys.
YouTube confirmed Charles had been temporarily removed from their Partnership Program, which allows YouTubers to make money from their content. Charles has 25 million YouTube subscribers.
A YouTube spokesperson said the company had applied their creator responsibility policy, which states: “If we see that a creator’s on- and/or off-platform behavior harms our users, community, employees or ecosystem, we may take action to protect the community.”
This is the second company to re-evaluate its partnership with the influencer, with makeup company Morphe announcing the end of their partnership this past Friday.
Charles shared his own statement on his Twitter, saying that him and the cosmetics company “mutually agreed to wind down” their project together.
“Since posting that video, many other people have come forward with a series of misleading stories and false allegations which have been reported on by many people, creators and news outlets,” he said of further accusations that have been made. “My legal team has begun taking action against those that have spread misinformation and/or created completely fake stories, as this has gone too far.”
At the beginning of this month Charles shared a video entitled “holding myself accountable” to YouTube:
In the video, he admitted to two incidents – one last year and one more recently – where, he said, he had become aware that the person he was exchanging messages with was underage. He claims he first asked what their ages were on Snapchat, and believed them when they said 18. Charles went on to say in the video that they “engaged in flirty conversation and later on found out that they were actually 16.”
The video has 8.6 million views.