YouTube terminated e-girl influencer Belle Delphine's account over the weekend, citing "severe violations" of the platform's sexual content policies, but Delphine told Motherboard she doesn't understand YouTube's decision.
Her channel is now gone, replaced with a red banner that states, "This account has been terminated due to multiple or severe violations of YouTube's policy on nudity or sexual content."
The channel had 1.8 million subscribers before YouTube terminated it.
Youtube did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Delphine told me that on Saturday, YouTube notified her via email that one of her videos from September—a music video for Doll.ia's song "Plushie Gun"—was removed due to violating the platform's sexual content guidelines. That email also included a warning that if she continued to post content that was against the guidelines, she would receive her first strike—part of a three-strike process that YouTube uses to keep creators within the rules, and which ultimately ends in a permanent ban.
"It seems that Youtube, without giving clear rules on their guidelines, picks and chooses who they wish to be rid of at any moment," Delphine said. "The problem with this is, these platforms are entire businesses for us creators, and that one person, without real reason, can switch it off… It's just a monopoly on the market at this point. There is no way for me to build on another platform, which hosts video's in the same way. I have lost 1.8 million subscribers at the push of a button."
The "Plushie Gun" video, which several other YouTubers posted reactions to at the time, is pretty standard for Delphine: she twerks in fishnets, licks a razor blade and plays with toy guns. The reaction videos, which include Delphine's original video in its entirety, are still up. Many videos in her channel were age-restricted, due to their adult content. The last video she uploaded to the channel, in September, was an unboxing of a mildly NSFW "mystery box" package from Pewdiepie.
"Almost immediately after [the "Plushie Gun" notice email], I received an email without any prior warning that my Youtube account had been permanently suspended, and that I also would not be allowed to make another youtube account," she said. "I think the thing that I find most irritating about this, isn't that they don't like my content—but they could have removed it and given me fair warning. I'm not trying to make Youtube upset by any means."
Delphine's rise to internet influencer fame has always included a tongue-in-cheek trolling of her fans and critics: she's perhaps most pseudonymous with the bathwater-selling stunt last year, and in June of 2019, she started a Pornhub account and posted bait-and-switch videos with titles like "Belle Delphine strokes two BIG cocks” (a video of her playing with chickens) and “Belle Delphine plays with her PUSSY” (likewise, but it was her cat that time). But now, she's moved from an e-girl taunting horny men online to a fully-fledged sex worker: she masturbates on her OnlyFans and this weekend announced that she's planning to upload a hardcore porn to the platform.