YouTuber FunForLouis Accused of Filming North Korea Propaganda
Popular YouTube filmmaker Louis Cole has been accused of filming North Korean propaganda, after the online content creator posted a series of videos of his time spent in the “hermit kingdom,” each casting it in a suspiciously positive light.
Louis, who runs the YouTube account FunForLouis, has become a prominent travel blogger on the site, amassing over 1.8 million subscribers. However, his latest series of travel vlogs outlining his experiences in North Korea have garnered plenty of criticism, with him having been accused of overlooking the plight of North Korea’s population in favor of adhering to his hyper-positive brand of videos, and even taking money from the North Korean government in order to shed a positive light on the country.
Considering that North Korea is known for staging elaborate “tours” in an attempt to trick foreign travelers into believing the country isn’t metaphorically in the shitter, Louis’ viewers inevitably criticized his videos and suggested that he was showing an unfair portrayal of what life is like in the notoriously downtrodden country. These criticisms haven’t exactly been dissuaded by Louis’ own comments, with tweets such as these doing little to curb suggestions that he’s participating in North Korean propaganda:
Did you know North Korea have amazing water parks? https://t.co/9uGMkl2eQf
— Louis Cole (@funforlouis) August 11, 2016
Louis has responded to these criticisms in the below video, in which he claims he was just trying to share some positivity with the beleaguered North Korean populace:
Louis points out that he’s not an investigative journalist so therefore he should not be expected to shine a light on these issues, which is true. However, it’s also true that recording and posting very clear propaganda from North Korea without acknowledging that it is propaganda, is basically him doing exactly what North Korea’s government wanted him to do when he gained access into the country. He was invited to North Korea to give a good impression of the country, and he did so.
Although Louis comes across as a pretty affable guy, it’s questionable that he would travel to a country as notoriously downtrodden as North Korea, knowing the propaganda it feeds both its citizens and the wider world regarding the heinous dictatorship run by its leader Kim Jong-un, and solely focus upon the positive aspects of his trip without putting it into perspective for his young audience. It’s common knowledge that North Korea stages tourist expeditions that only share a staged experience of what life is like to live in the country, but without that context it just looks like Louis has had a fun little trip in North Korea, a country that is also known for sending dissidents to concentration camps and executing those who try to leave.
But hey, at least they have a great water park.