- The Wall Street Journal website was hacked on Monday morning to include a message in support of YouTuber Felix “PewDiePie” Kjellberg.
- PewDiePie is the most popular YouTube star in the world with more than 77 million subscribers, but he’s in danger of being overtaken by Bollywood YouTube account T-Series.
- In recent months, PewDiePie has been at the center of a social media campaign to keep his account ahead of T-Series in subscribers, and supporters have gone to extremes to promote his channel.
- Another hacker caused more than 100,000 printers across the globe to print messages in support of PewDiePie, while claiming that the hack was to expose security flaws.
The Wall Street Journal was made an unwilling participant in a YouTube power struggle when hackers took over a page on the newspaper’s website to post a message of support for YouTuber Felix “PewDiePie” Kjellberg.
A page on the site was altered to fake an apology to PewDiePie for “misrepresentation,” and said the newspaper would be supporting the YouTuber in his effort to beat T-Series, a Bollywood-focused YouTube account, to 80 million subscribers. The hacked page also included a number of memes featuring PewDiePie and T-Series.
PewDiePie is the world’s most popular YouTuber account with more than 77 million subscribers, but many have predicted that T-Series would surpass him by the end of the year.
The page was eventually taken down by The Wall Street Journal.Variety reports that the page in question was not directly associated with the Wall Street Journal newsroom, and is managed by advertising branch WSJ Custom Solutions.
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PewDiePie tweeted a link to the page before it was deleted, claiming that The Wall Street Journal had joined his campaign against T-Series. The YouTuber has had a contentious relationship with the media – and specifically The Wall Street Journal – after being repeatedly criticised for racist behaviour and promoting anti-Semitic YouTube accounts.
This isn’t the first time hackers have taken action in support of PewDiePie. A hacker using the Twitter handle @j3ws3r claimed responsibility for accessing more than 100,000 printers across the world and forcing them to print a pro-PewDiePie message. The hacker claims that the goal of the printer hacks are to point out common security flaws within IT networks. A first round of printer hacks took place in November, and over the weekend even more printers began spitting out the message of support.
— StealZ (@antoine_stealz) December 17, 2018
While PewDiePie has acknowledged the printer hacks, he has not claimed any involvement in the scheme, nor has he discouraged the hackers. His account remains slightly ahead of T-Series in subscribers at the moment.
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