Steven Blake Crowder (born July 7, 1987) is a conservative Canadian-American commentator, actor, and comedian. He is the host of Louder with Crowder, a late-night style comedic television show covering news, pop culture, and politics on his own site. He is also a former contributor at Fox News, a former voice actor on the PBS Kids children's cartoon, Arthur, and is frequently featured on The Glenn Beck Program and The Dana Show. A one hour podcast, also titled Louder with Crowder, is uploaded to iTunes and Soundcloud once a week and is broadcast live on YouTube. He is also known for creating the "Change My Mind" meme.
Early life and career
Crowder describes himself as a pro-life Christian conservative. Early in his career, he worked as a voice actor for the character Alan "The Brain" Powers on the children's television series Arthur. He began performing stand-up comedy at age 17. He then acted in a number of films, including the role of Doug Moore in the 2009 movie To Save a Life. From 2009 to 2012, Crowder worked for Fox News.
By 2009, Crowder regularly posted satirical videos on politically conservative media, including Pajamas Media and later at Andrew Breitbart's Big Hollywood. Crowder served as the master of ceremonies at the 2011 Conservative Political Action Conference, and generated some controversy with a rap video he premiered at CPAC 2012. In October 2012, Crowder's YouTube video parodying Lena Dunham's ad endorsing Barack Obama was mentioned in the conservative magazine The American Spectator. In 2016, Crowder created a short video for the conservative website Prager University in which he criticizes democratic socialism as being little to no different than the Marxist ideology itself.
December 2012 union protest
In December 2012, Crowder and members of Americans for Prosperity were involved in an altercation at a demonstration in Michigan concerning the state's recently passed right-to-work law. The incident began with an attempt by union activists to tear down the Americans for Prosperity tent, which was eventually successful. During the altercation, Crowder was punched several times by a union activist. Crowder posted an edited video of the incident to his YouTube channel that cut footage of the alleged assailant being pushed to the ground and getting back up, right before throwing the punches at Crowder. However, Fox News' broadcasts of the incident included footage of the man being pushed. The New York Times stated "The same footage also shows that Mr. Crowder had his hand on that man's shoulder just before he tumbled to the ground, but, while the camera does not capture the whole sequence of events, it seems likely that the man was knocked to the ground as members of the two sides pushed against one other, not shoved down by Mr. Crowder." Crowder later released an unedited copy of the video.
An AFL–CIO spokesman, Eddie Vale, stated that the organization did not condone the tearing down of the Americans for Prosperity tent or the violence against Crowder and his group.
In March 2013, Ingham County Prosecutor Stuart Dunnings III declined to press charges against anyone involved in the December 2012 altercation. According to Dunnings, his office was originally sent an edited version of the video of Crowder's altercation. However, upon reviewing the unedited version, the prosecutor's office decided not to pursue the case. Dunnings stated that "It's pretty clear the person that they wanted to charge was acting in self-defense."
After Fox News
In October 2013, Fox News dropped Crowder. This was announced shortly after Crowder made negative statements about Fox News host Sean Hannity and about Fox News. In 2017, the Louder with Crowder program became a daily program featured on Conservative Review's new streaming service, CRTV.
Change My Mind meme
'Change My Mind' is an Internet meme that originated from a photograph of Crowder seated behind a sign that reads "Male Privilege is a Myth / Change My Mind." Crowder set up the table outside the campus of Texas Christian University and invited students walking by to change his mind on the subject, as part of a regular segment Crowder performs on his YouTube channel and podcast, where he sits at a table with a sign including the phrase "Change My Mind". After Crowder uploaded it on his Twitter account on February 18, 2018, the photograph quickly became a means for others to change the signs about different situations.
In June 2018, Complex rated the meme at 18 on their list of "The Best Memes of 2018 (so far)".
Investigation by YouTube
In June 2019, YouTube investigated Crowder for using racist and homophobic slurs targeting Carlos Maza in multiple videos reacting to the Vox series Strikethrough, which Maza hosts. Crowder referred to Maza as "Mr. Lispy queer", an "angry little queer", and a "gay Mexican", and mocked him with a stereotypical gay voice, sometimes while wearing a t-shirt with Che Guevara on it that said "Socialism is for f*gs [sic]". In addition, Maza said that Crowder's fans have doxxed and harassed him.
Crowder responded with a video where he said his use of slurs was "playful ribbing" and that "it's funny, it's a comedy show." He said that the investigation was a "war we will fight to the bitter end" and that "this is an example of a giant, multinational media conglomeration ... attempting to squash a competitor." He also stated that he is opposed to doxxing and harassment. Crowder later spoke out on his Twitter account, after YouTube's demonetization of his videos, claiming "Vox is still going to be pissed; they're not going to be happy with this," and called the situation a brewing "Adpocalypse." He also added "their goal is to completely get rid of people" in reference to Vox.
According to an analysis by Vox Media's The Verge, Crowder's videos "routinely contain egregious violations of YouTube's policies against cyberbullying." Maza said Crowder's videos about him are "dehumanizing, and it's something I thought YouTube would be more protective about because it brands itself as being a queer space". Vox editors Lauren Williams and Joe Posner also tweeted in defence of Maza, claiming "our efforts to protect Carlos and others from historically marginalized groups from being silenced or driven from the platform by incessant harassment are in line with these values", in reference to political debate and free speech. In response to this tweet, political commentator Ben Shapiro spoke out in defense of Crowder, tweeting "This, right here, from @voxdotcom EIC Lauren Williams and Head of Video Joe Posner, is a vile lie. Maza has not been silenced in any way. The only people seeking to silence are those who demand Crowder be deplatformed because Maza's precious feelings were supposedly hurt."
YouTube concluded that the language used by Crowder "was clearly hurtful," but "the videos as posted don't violate our policies". It determined that Crowder had not encouraged his viewers to harass or dox Maza either on YouTube or other platforms and that the main point of his video was to respond to opinion. The decision to not suspend the channel drew considerable criticism. The next day, YouTube suspended the channel's monetization until Crowder addresses "all of the issues" with his channel, citing community guidelines. The decision to demonetize Crowder's account was criticized by Republican Senator Ted Cruz, who had previously tweeted in defense of Crowder.
Crowder married his wife, Hilary, in August 2012, and wrote about the benefits of remaining abstinent prior to his marriage.
In June 2019, Steven reacting to the Vox series Strikethrough, which Carlos Maza hosts feel offended by the criticism. Maza said that Crowder's fans have doxxed and harassed him after the copyright strike against Steven despite Steven did not encourage such harrassment. Steven responded with a video where he said that the investigation was a "war we will fight to the bitter end" and "this is an example of a giant, multinational media conglomeration ... attempting to squash a competitor." He also said that his use of racial and homophobic slurs was "playful ribbing". Four days later, YouTube responded to state that the language, although 'hurtful', didn't violate its policies and would not be removed from the site. The decision drew considerable criticism. On the next day, YouTube changed course saying that it decided to suspend Steven’s ability to run ads on and monetize his videos, later saying that if Steven addressed "all of the issues" with his channel, monetization could be restored. This event started the #VoxAdpocalypse movement.