The FBI have conducted a raid on the Los Angeles-area home of YouTube star Jake Paul.
YouTube is an American online video-sharing platform headquartered in San Bruno, California. Three former PayPal employees—Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim—created the service in February 2005. Google bought the site in November 2006 for US$1.65 billion; YouTube now operates as one of Google’s subsidiaries.
YouTube allows users to upload, view, rate, share, add to playlists, report, comment on videos, and subscribe to other users. It offers a wide variety of user-generated and corporate media videos. Available content includes video clips, TV show clips, music videos, short and documentary films, audio recordings, movie trailers, live streams, and other content such as video blogging, short original videos, and educational videos. Most content on YouTube is uploaded by individuals, but media corporations including CBS, the BBC, Vevo, and Hulu offer some of their material via YouTube as part of the YouTube partnership program. Unregistered users can only watch (but not upload) videos on the site, while registered users are also permitted to upload an unlimited number of videos and add comments to videos. Videos that are age-restricted are available only to registered users affirming themselves to be at least 18 years old.
YouTube and selected creators earn advertising revenue from Google AdSense, a program which targets ads according to site content and audience. The vast majority of its videos are free to view, but there are exceptions, including subscription-based premium channels, film rentals, as well as YouTube Music and YouTube Premium, subscription services respectively offering premium and ad-free music streaming, and ad-free access to all content, including exclusive content commissioned from notable personalities. As of February 2017, there were more than 400 hours of content uploaded to YouTube each minute, and one billion hours of content being watched on YouTube every day. As of August 2018, the website is ranked as the second-most popular site in the world, according to Alexa Internet, just behind Google. As of May 2019, more than 500 hours of video content are uploaded to YouTube every minute. Based on reported quarterly advertising revenue, YouTube is estimated to have US$15 billion in annual revenues.
YouTube has faced criticism over aspects of its operations, including its handling of copyrighted content contained within uploaded videos, its recommendation algorithms perpetuating videos that promote conspiracy theories and falsehoods, hosting videos ostensibly targeting children but containing violent or sexually suggestive content involving popular characters, videos of minors attracting pedophilic activities in their comment sections, and fluctuating policies on the types of content that is eligible to be monetized with advertising.
FBI swat team raids home of YouTube star Jake Paul
A spokeswoman for the FBI said an armed swat team carried out the raid, which took place while Paul was not at home.
The official would not say the reason, only that the search was related to an investigation. Officers were seen collecting guns from the property.
FBI swat team raids home of YouTube star Jake Paul
Paul is facing charges of looting in Arizona and recently held a party that allegedly broke public health orders.
Paul, 23, has over 20 million followers on YouTube.
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“The affidavit in support of the search warrant has been sealed by a judge and I am, therefore, prohibited from commenting as to the nature of the investigation. No arrests are planned.”
Aerial footage from news outlets showed what looked like firearms being removed from the home by investigators.
He was charged with criminal trespass and unlawful assembly, but told US media that he was only there to meet protesters.
In July, he was criticised for holding a day-long party at his Calabasas home, where revellers did not wear face masks or social distance.
Mayor Alicia Weintraub expressed outrage over such a gathering amid California’s worsening coronavirus outbreak.
Paul first gained notoriety on video sharing platform Vine, and later YouTube – building a reputation for brash humour and pranks.
His online fame helped to secure him a role on Disney Channel series Bizaardvark. However he was fired after complaints from neighbours about his stunts – including starting a fire in his back garden – gained publicity.
Paul, like his brother Logan, is a controversial figure in the so-called influencer industry. In 2018 he uploaded a video titled “I lost my virginity,” featuring a thumbnail picture of him posing semi-nude with his girlfriend.
He has also staged two weddings, taken part in a boxing match against fellow YouTuber AnEsonGib, and released several songs, including one with rapper Gucci Mane.
Earlier this year Paul was criticised for suggesting that anxiety is a self-induced mental illness. In a subsequent tweet, he said he had also suffered from anxiety and intended to “[spread] more awareness”.