PewDiePie, one of the world's biggest internet stars and long-time holder of the most subscribed YouTube channel, has signed an exclusive deal with blockchain streaming platform Dlive, edging PewDiePie closer to bitcoin and cryptocurrencies as his fractious relationship with mainstream services and the media continues.
Dlive, a decentralized network for live streaming videos where content providers and consumers are rewarded with a cryptocurrency called Lino, claims to take no percentage of creator earnings and does not charge fees. Lino raised $20 million early last year in a private token sale to build what it called "YouTube on the blockchain."
PewDiePie's partnership with D-live comes after a petition to ban PewDiePie from YouTube, accusing his channel of being "one of the largest platforms for white supremacist content," garnered some 80,000 signatures in response to PewDiePie being namechecked by the New Zealand Christchurch gunman before he carried out his attack on two mosques, killing 50 people.
The move will likely bring awareness of bitcoin, blockchain technology, and cryptocurrencies to PewDiePies audience, which is mostly aged between 18-24, making up 44% of his views.
Surveys have shown young people to be more open to bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, and decentralized services than older groups.
"Personally, I've never heard of DLive before, but taking a look after this publicity stunt, it seems pretty cool," Mati Greenspan, senior analyst at brokerage eToro wrote in a note to clients.
"Though I personally don't have much taste for this content, it seems that a lot of young people do. When we talk about mainstream adoption of cryptocurrencies, this sort of splash can go a very long way."
PewDiePie, who has been uploading videos to YouTube since 2010, began as a gaming channel but has branched out to internet culture commentary in recent years, accumulating some 93 million subscribers and 21 billion video views as of April 2019.
DLive is great for me because I'm treated like a real partner," PewDiePie said in a press release announcing the partnership.