YouTube creators such as Shane Dawson, Ryland Adams and Smosh co-founder Anthony Padilla called on the digital network Defy Media after its closure for a number of relevant business practices.
Defy Media was the parent company of some of the most popular YouTube channels, including Smosh, Smosh Games, and Clevver. The network announced last week that it was shutting down operations immediately, leaving teams at Smosh and Clevver in search of a new parent company to support its talent pool and production costs. Now, in the wake of the news, several creators who worked with Defy Media and Defy Media’s multi-channel network (MCN) are voicing their own grievances with Defy Media’s predatory practices and lack of professionalism.
Adams, a successful YouTuber and Dawson partner, used to work with Clevver News. Adams tweeted his testimony about the alleged mistreatment he experienced at Defy Media, noting that he never spoke about it at the time of his departure because “he was being threatened by Defy’s lawyers on a daily basis.”
““Rather than take them to court and be stuck in limbo for what could have been years, I agreed to join their MCN, so they were in a position to get a percentage,” Adams said. tweeted. “I was forced to be a part of Defy Media’s MCN, meaning YouTube money that I work hard to get filters through. After they take a percentage of my ads, they pay me my money. This month I was never paid. A bank took Defy’s money, which is mine, and I may never see him again. “
Padilla, one of the most prominent YouTube creators working under Defy Media, shared his own experiences. He spoke about Defy executives trying to keep him out of scheduled meetings to green light new shows, forcing the team to launch a $ 250,000 Indiegogo campaign for a poorly conceived mobile game, and he tried to take control of his personal Twitter account once he left the company. . The announcement of its immediate closure by Defy, which will affect hundreds of employees, did not surprise Padilla, but did suggest the way the company handled what it said about its morale.
“Putting the lives of so many people in danger.”
“And to top it all, today they announced that they are closing without giving any kind of attention to anyone,” he said in his video, “and putting the lives of so many people at risk.”
Padilla’s video resonated with other prominent members in the YouTube community, including Hank Green, who tweeted his support for independent creators after testimonials began to surface.
“The more I learn about the early online video business, how things really went, the more I see that the ‘Wild West’ was not about how free we were to create, but how free jerks were to earn value from Innovative young creators “Green wrote.
People like Green and Dawson, who never worked with Defy Media, came to the defense of Padilla, Adams and others on Twitter, posting similar stories they heard on Twitter. In a series of deleted tweets since then, Dawson called out the company for scamming the creators.
“Imagine being a YouTube network that robs all its creators of their hard-earned money.”
“Imagine being a YouTube network that robs all its creators of their hard-earned money and then files for bankruptcy and uses the creators’ money to pay off their debt,” Dawson wrote. “Can’t relate.”
Lisa Schwartz, YouTube creator who worked at Defy MCN, announced on Twitter that she had to find out that Defy Media was shutting down via a Tubefilter article. He added that no one from Defy Media reached out to anyone beforehand.
Now, numerous creators within the MCN are in a state of limbo, trying to figure out how to receive their AdSense payments, a procedure once completed through Defy Media. According to Tubefilter, YouTube is trying to work with creators to ensure that their AdSense payments end up in their personal wallets, enrolling individual creators in the YouTube Partner Program and unlinking them from Defy Media, according to TubeFilter.
More creators are coming out of the woodwork to tell their own Defy Media stories, but the company has fallen silent on social media. Did not respond to The Verge ‘s request for comment.