YouTube has been slammed for completely deleting Australian gay comedy channel Ding Dong I’m Gay during Pride month.
The gay, sex-positive comedy web series follows Cameron, a gay man who came out six years ago and moved to Sydney, trying to prove to his newly-out cousin that his is “an all-knowing gay guru”.
Released last year, the show’s six-episode first season, released weekly, was a huge hit.
But during Pride month, the entire channel was unceremoniously removed from YouTube, the series’ creator Tim Spencer.
He told Star Observer that it was “beyond disappointing” when he realised the Ding Dong I’m Gay channel had disappeared with no warning.
He added: “The not-so-subtle message it gives LGBT+ creatives and audiences is that our identities are confronting, wrong and do not deserve to be seen.
“It feels really disempowering to be censored so brutally and unfairly, particularly this month.”
Fans of the show were disappointed, with one commenting on Instagram: “This sucks. I am so sorry for you and everyone involved who worked so hard.”
“Woah, this is f**ked,” wrote another.
Spencer explained that one of the show’s episodes, in which a character performs oral sex on another man, had previously been deleted by the platform, but was later reinstated as YouTube said it had not violated community standards.
He said: “The visuals of Ding Dong I’m Gay were very carefully composed to ensure they met YouTube’s policy around sexual content.
“We made sure the sexual content is not gratuitous, that no genitalia is ever seen, and the episodes were locked to 18+ audiences.
“As a rule, the sex scenes in Ding Dong I’m Gay were always written and shot for humour, not for titillation.”
Spencer said that heterosexual sex scenes of a similar nature are allowed on the platform, and that YouTube’s removal of the queer, sex-positive comedy proves that “LGBT+ creatives and audiences not afforded the same opportunity to make light of our sexual disasters”.
At the time of writing, the Ding Dong I’m Gay YouTube channel appears to have been reinstated.
PinkNews has approached YouTube for comment.