YouTube has halted payments to James Charles amid the beauty influencer’s ongoing scandal involving flirtatious texts with underage boys.
EW has confirmed the streaming service has temporarily demonetized the 21-year-old’s popular channel — which, as of press time, boasts 25.5 million subscribers — in a move that prevents the makeup guru from making ad money from his videos.
“We can confirm that we had applied our creator responsibility policy and temporarily removed James Charles from the YouTube Partner Program,” a YouTube spokesperson tells EW, while also pointing to the brand’s new video outlining the policy.
Essentially, the Partnership Program allows prominent creators to make substantial sums from their content hosted by YouTube, though its creator responsibility policy can be enforced if the company feels the content was published by someone who’s “on- and/or off-platform behavior harms our users, community, employees or ecosystem.”
The company’s decision comes after Charles addressed in a YouTube video (with 8.6 million views and counting) the allegations of two 16-year-old boys who said that they’d engaged in inappropriate conversations with him on social media. Charles stressed that he was committed to “holding [himself] accountable for [his] own actions,” and that he owes “a massive apology” to the teens over the “embarrassing” incident — which, as Vulture noted in a deep dive into Charles’ rise to prominence, isn’t the first time he has received criticism for his alleged behavior.
On Friday, just over two weeks after Charles shared his YouTube apology, cosmetics giant Morphe announced that the “recent allegations” against him prompted the company to end its business relationship with the star and “wind down sales of the Morphe x James Charles product offering” in an effort to “create a positive, safe, and empowering space where all beauty lovers can freely share their artistry and passion for cosmetics.”
Charles also reportedly exited his YouTube competition series Instant Influencer in recent weeks, per Variety.