While I’m still not posting to my channel for the next week, I am getting back into the groove of things. I’ll be releasing a video when I come back of everything I’ve done during my mental health break. Speaking with my therapist, support group and attending 12-step meetings, I’ve seen where I began to stray from the path.
Although there are some valid criticisms and I have a plan of action to improve my content, there has been a lot of slander going on. I’m sorry to use such a serious word, but there’s no other word for it. The definition of slander is as follows:
If you’d like to learn more about the legal definitions and differences between defamation, slander and libel, please read this Legal Zoom post
The purpose of this post is to shine a light on the false allegations that have been spreading throughout YouTube the community. We truly are living in a very scary time where people can present things as facts without showing a shred of evidence in an effort to not only ruin someone’s reputation but try to destroy their career, which is entirely based around helping people.
The reality of the situation is many of the claims against me would never hold up in a court of law because there is no evidence of the claims being made. We must realize that feelings are not facts, and just because you feel something is a scam does not mean that it is or would ever be defined as such.
The Allegation: I have claimed to be a licensed mental health professional
This is not true, and you will not find one video of me claiming to be one. You will also not find one YouTuber who has made a video about me with a clip of me saying such a thing. I came across one video that used my clip in full context where I say that I am a mental health professional, but I elaborate on the fact that I was employed at a mental health treatment center for over 3 years and was a professional in my field. I never used the word licensed, and it is false to state that I have. If you’d like more information on my position at the treatment center, you can watch this video I made.
The Allegation: I have unlawfully charged people for coaching
This is false. Nobody has been able to bring forth a single witness to state that I have charged them for coaching. Now, something people are calling into question is my $50 Patreon tier, but that is not a coaching call and is not marketed as such. It’s a hangout and if a person asks for advice, it’s nothing more than that. There is nothing illegal or fraudulent about giving advice when I do not market myself as a licensed professional. The Patreon tier even has a disclaimer that is public for anyone thinking about purchasing that tier:
Hangouts are nothing abnormal for YouTuber Patreon tiers. By doing some research, you’ll see this is quite common. Even from larger mental health channels who are not licensed as well. They are not doing anything wrong either.
The reality is that I’ve only had two calls with individuals who signed up, and during each call we simply got to know each other. It is slanderous for channels to make claims that I’ve sold coaching with no witnesses or evidence.
The Allegation: My course is a scam
Prior to my course being free, it was a course I created based on a group I did at a fully accredited treatment center, which insurance companies paid for because it is psycho educational and you do not need a licensed to do such a group or course. In the video discussing the course now being free, I show my financial statement from Teachable.com in which I have not made any money from the course in the last year.
There was one person who purchased the program recently before I made it free at a 50% off rate, and I refunded that one person as the course is now free.
Others purchased the course in 2017 before I had even reached 1000 subscribers on YouTube and were people who found my course through my work at the treatment center, public speaking or someone who was referred to the course. But, only one person paid full price and the others received 75% off or more:
As you can see from the full sales history, I wasn’t making much off of my course. And even still, there was nothing unlawful about selling this course, and nobody has produced one person who has purchased the course and stated they had been scammed.
The Allegation: I am not qualified to discuss the topics I discuss
While it is true that I do not have a formal degree, my work has been reviewed by Dr. Todd Grande as well as Nate Smith, LPC , and they have both said there is absolutely nothing wrong, legally, about what I am doing. While they may have criticisms of how I structure my videos, neither of these licensed professionals have denounced my work.
Additionally, Nate Smith, LPC, is a licensed professional as well as an educator who did a full review on my course and posted it on his channel. In his words, he states my course shows competency of a junior, senior or even a graduate student in the field. So, while I don’t have formal training, licensed professionals have backed my work.
I want you to sit back and ask yourself why you’re trusting the views of drama channels over licensed professionals when one of my biggest criticisms is that I’m not licensed.
Yes, I do things in a different way than licensed professionals because as you can see from both Nate Smith and Dr. Grande, it is hard for them to get views on YouTube. Remember, just because drama channels get more views does not mean what they are saying has any merit.
The Allegation: My books are a scam
The word scam keeps coming up, so let’s look into the definition of scam.
Stating that my books are a scam would imply that I sold them as something that they weren’t or lied to those who purchased them. The first thing to realize is that nobody has a produced a witness stating that I have done this. Now, someone made a video saying they didn’t like the book, but that does not make it a scam. In order for the book to be a scam, people would have had to not receive the product, or I would have had to make claims that I was something that I am not, which is not something I have done.
Furthermore, if anyone looked at the reviews for my most recent book, Rewire Your Anger, they would see that the majority of people were happy with their purchase.
You do not need to have a license to write a book on a topic with your own personal experience, views and education. If that were the case, best-selling author Johann Hari would not have been able to gain such an incredible reputation from his books Chasing the Scream (about addiction) and Lost Connections (about depression and anxiety)
A quick reminder, the most recent scam controversies on YouTube were Kenza Cosmetics and Mystery Brand. Not only did people not receive Kenza Cosmetics products, but they were also lied to about the true value of these products. Mystery Brand took advantage of people by stating they had the chance of winning extremely expensive products by gambling, which was proven to be false.
There was evidence to support the claims against Kenza Cosmetics and Mystery Brand, but no evidence has been presented for anything I’ve sold, which again, is slander.
The Allegation: My apology videos were monetized
I’ve come across videos and comments stating that my apology videos are monetized. This is not true. They were never monetized, and below are the screen shots for these videos with how much AdSense money was made from them:
While getting these screen shots together, I can’t help but think how silly it is that I even need to show this. By watching any of those 4 videos, you will not receive an ad. Nobody has received an ad because they were never monetized.
The reason I must address this is because there is so much misinformation out there flooding the community and each little thing adds up to make my character look even worse. I watched one channel state my apology videos were monetized as a passing thought, and this creator probably didn’t mean anything by it, but the reality is that you can see from the previous false statements that people take the smallest things and create false narratives around them.
The Allegation: I do this for the money
This is something that’s going around that is simply not true. As a reader, I understand that it’s a difficult one for you, so in this case, I’d ask that you consider my actions speaking louder than my words.
This stems from a clip of myself and my mom about me making money while not licensed. I want to state that I completely understand why people took this the way they did.
The truth is that this was an inside joke caught on camera between myself and my mom about college. It’s no secret that many people in the United States are up to their ears in student loan debt with degrees in fields that do not pay much. Mental health professionals are no different. My mother has a PhD in psychology, and mental health professionals don’t make that much money. My mother racked up 100s of thousands of dollars in student loan debt 20 years ago and is still paying it off.
The joke was intended to be about how mental health professionals are underpaid as well as many other fields which require a degree. Working in the treatment center, I saw this as well. For my position that required no degree or license, I was making more than some of my licensed coworkers.
But again, I ask you to look at the evidence and my actions speaking louder than words that my passion is not about the money. Although I was making more than licensed professionals at the treatment center, I was making half as much as my former career in the car industry.
As for my channel, I’ve done two charity live streams and multiple giveaways. I’ve also dedicated quite a bit towards giving back in the aspect of promoting smaller creators by having them do guest videos on my channel as well as tweeting out other creators who I watch.
Yes, just like everyone else, I have bills to pay as well as a son to support, but for the critics of me selling books and having a Patreon-only Q&A, I’d ask that you look at the fact that I have over 800 videos worth of free content. The reality is that only 1% of my videos are Patreon-exclusive content, and that has to count for something.
The Allegation: I’m Islamophobic
I haven’t seen the video claiming this, but friends have reached out to me stating it was because of a picture of my son. A picture of my son after I showed him how to make a ninja mask out of a t-shirt because his favorite show at the time was Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Here’s a video on how to make the ninja mask:
A YouTuber used this picture to make the claim that I’m islamphobic
Here’s what that said translated:
So, that was a comment from my friend, Stephen, 5 years ago who recently passed away from cancer. Not only did this YouTuber take the time to scroll through 5 years of wholesome pictures with my son and family, but they reached to call me Islamaphobic in an effort to do some thought policing.
Again, it seems silly that I even need to explain this.
The Allegation: I am racist
I am half black. Yes, my real father is black. This is something that I never thought I’d have to explain on such a public platform. But right now, I have non-POCs accusing me of being racist when half of my entire family is black. Below are pictures of myself and my family:
And yes, soon I’ll be doing a series of the mental health struggles of growing up as a half black person who doesn’t look half black.
The Allegation: I am harassing smaller mental health channels and am sending my audience after them
This is probably the most troubling one because I am being held hostage in this situation. There’s nothing I can say or do in this situation without videos being made about me, but it needs to be addressed. I’m going to allow you to do your own research because naming these channels is only going to give them another reason to say I am harassing them.
When we sit back and look at the facts of the situation, I have never once made a video about any smaller channels harassing them. The only video you will find is the one we did for the Unsolicited Advice podcast, and it was stated multiple times that this was only to discuss the subject but do not go harass other channels. Time and time again, I have personally denounced this publicly, and there is no evidence that I have done otherwise.
Not one person has come forward to state that I have sent them over to another channel to harass someone, but the claims are being made constantly.
If you look through my entire video library, you will not find one video that I’ve made about the smaller creators accusing me. If you check their channels, you will find that their most popular videos are the ones they’ve made about me attacking me.
Lastly, one of these channels made the claim that I called the police to do a wellness check on them. First, that’s not true. Up until yesterday, I didn’t know this person’s real name. Next, it’s impossible to call a wellness check if you do not know the city or state in which the person resides in (I know this from my work in the mental health treatment center dealing with some clients who were in different cities and states and called me suicidal.)
Most importantly, people need to understand what a wellness check is and the laws around it. A wellness check is done by local law enforcement or first responders when you are concerned about the safety of someone or the people around them. The people show up, ask how everything is, and leave if there’s no issue. Wellness checks save lives, and if you’re worried about a loved one, I highly suggest you do one.
I’m explaining this because whoever did call in the wellness check was most likely concerned and did nothing wrong. So, if that person does come forward, please do not harass them because they were doing the right thing based on their concern of another person.
But going back to what’s being said about me in these situations, there is no evidence. I’ve been racking my brain for the last 2 weeks trying to understand how such a thing can happen. How can so many people turn on you despite evidence?
Although the public has questioned my work, there is no proof that anything I’ve done is unethical or illegal aside from opinion, and there is a major difference between opinions and facts. The reason it’s important to understand this is because although I have followed legal guidelines, many channels making videos on me are not.
It’s extremely scary knowing that channels can produce content and get thousands of views without stating facts and damage someone’s reputation and livelihood they use to support their family. Were any of these people real journalists for reputable organizations, they would have been fired long ago for putting the organization in jeopardy of being sued for defamation and slander.
Aside from clearing some things up for my own reputation, as always, I want people to learn from this situation. At any moment, any YouTuber can be targeted and have dozens of videos made about them with no evidence to back very serious claims. There can be so many untruths floating around that any real criticism is drowned out. This makes it difficult to address valid criticisms without appearing to give validity to false, slanderous claims.
What do you do as a viewer? Do your own research and ask yourself if there is enough evidence to support serious claims.
To conclude this piece, I am working on becoming a better YouTube creator, mental health advocate and social commentator. Through therapy, I’ve learned that some people will never open their minds to the truth of who I am and what I stand for, and that’s okay. For all of you who have stuck with me or are simply seeking the truth on the situation, I thank you for sticking by my side.