Mr Beast responds to critics after backlash over video ‘curing 1,000 blind people’

Mr Beast responds to critics after backlash over video ‘curing 1,000 blind people’

A YouTuber has responded to criticism over a viral video in which he revealed that he helped 1,000 people get access to sight-restoring cataract surgeries.

MrBeast – who surpassed PewDiePie to become the most-subscribed to content creator on YouTube in the world in November last year with 131 million followers – shared a video on his channel on 28 January in which he says: “In this video, we’re curing 1,000 people’s blindness.”

The content creator, whose real name is Jimmy Donaldson, was, however, criticised for the initiative by some online commentators.

Responding to the negative commentary his video received, he tweeted on Tuesday: “Twitter - Rich people should help others with their money.

“Me - Okay, I’ll use my money to help people and I promise to give away all my money before I die. Every single penny.

“Twitter - MrBeast bad.”

In the video, which has at least 68 million views, Donaldson said he paid for patients to get the eye surgeries and filmed their reactions after the operations.

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He also interviewed Jeff Levenson, an ophthalmologist and surgeon he worked with, who said: “Half of all the blindness in the world is people who need a 10-minute surgery”.

Reacting to MrBeast’s video on a live stream, political commentator and Twitch streamer Hasan Piker said he was filled with “rage”.

“It is so extremely frustrating that it is up to one YouTube guy to decide to make content out of it when people who are too poor can’t just f***ing see.”

Mr Piker’s comments sparked debate about the video on Twitter. Donaldson’s reply to his critics came under fire as well.

“We’re not seeing what’s wrong with what Hasan said. He said he is frustrated that it takes a YouTuber (MrBeast) making a monetisable video for clicks to drive discussion around a procedure that takes 10 minutes and should be accessible to all. What’s wrong with this statement?” wrote one user.

“It’s deeply frustrating to have to rely on a benevolent content king making feel-good videos, rather than addressing the root causes of these problems,” said another user.

The YouTuber was also called out for being a “textbook rich white man with a god complex”.

“There is something so demonic about this and I can’t even articulate what it is,” said another user, with the handle @LolOverruled, who shared screenshots from Donaldson’s video along with his comment.

The tweet soon went viral and received more than 5,000 quote tweets and 87,000 likes.

“Hey, quick question: Why don’t you use your influence to discuss things that would benefit ALL people, not just those you decide to sprinkle with fairy dust? Is it because the system that makes you so rich depends on making most of us serfs, and you don’t want to confront it?” one commentator asked him.

Another user said: “This is a common victim mentality with rich individuals; taking commentary about how their morally good action is proof of systemic failure and shifting it into an ‘indictment’ of themselves. Philanthropy is good but when it’s necessary for people just to survive it’s less cute.”

Some of Donaldson’s fans, however, supported him.

“A Rich YouTuber with loads more money than he will ever need actually gives back in all his videos and people still find a way to complain,” said another user in Donaldson’s defence.