A famous South Korean mukbang YouTuber is being called out for her videos in which she eats live seafood in front of her audience.
Ethan Klein, one half of the husband-wife duo of H3H3 Productions, accused Ssoyoung of “torturing” animals and sometimes even eating live octopus and squids on camera, according to Metro.
Klein called out the South Korean YouTuber in his video titled “ASMR Has Gone Way Too Far” where he featured several videos of the female mukbang star.
“I think she knows that if she wasn’t acting at least a little squeamish and nervous about it, then she would be seen as a total sociopath,” Klein said in his video. “But she clearly loves torturing animals. No question about it.”
One clip that Klein featured in his video was uploaded on March 21, 2019, showing Ssoyoung eating a live octopus on camera. As of this writing, Ssoyoung took the video down.
Another popular video she uploaded, titled “Dancing Live Squid,” has over 24 million views, and it was also featured in Klein’s post. This video was also taken down from YouTube.
YouTuber Tyler Rugge also made a video about Ssoyoung, titled “Mukbang Youtuber who Hurts & Kills Animals on Camera (ssoyoung).”
“She tortures and kills animals before she eats them. On camera. Not sure how YouTube let that one slide,” he said in his video.
However, Rugge, who is part Japanese, said he received several comments suggesting that criticism of the mukbang video is culturally insensitive, implying that eating live seafood is a common practice in some parts of Asia, Indy100 reported.
“Just because something is someone’s culture, it doesn’t justify it. Another thing – it’s really not a big part of Asian culture to do the things that she was doing. Sure, some people in Asia do do that stuff, but it’s not like it’s a widely accepted practice,” the YouTuber said.
People in the comment section, some of whom are of Asian descent, echoed the same sentiment.
“I’m Vietnamese and Chinese, and I feel like it’s necessary to clear up how the ‘culture’ excuse is just that… and excuse,” one of the comments read. “In Asian cultures, when preparing seafood, even in poorer parts of the country, we respect what we eat and make sure to end the animals life in the most comfortable way possible. There should be no question on whether this woman is doing the right thing or not. The animals she uses in her videos are already going to eaten in the end, but making it suffer for views isn’t OK.”
In YouTube’s terms of service, it states that videos featuring animal cruelty are not allowed on the platform. However, Ssoyoung’s videos passed the review and appeared not to have violated any of the terms.
“Our trust and safety team is located around the globe and we draw upon this regional expertise when drafting our policies. We have strict policies regarding animal abuse, and have determined the videos highlighted do not violate them,” YouTube said in a statement to Business Insider.
Feature Image Screenshot via Ssoyoung