David Dobrik has apologised after he was accused of not gaining consent from people he used in his videos, and after one of his former collaborators was accused of rape.
The YouTube star, who previously addressed the allegations in a two-minute video posted to his podcast channel, apologised for his ‘cowardly’ video and said he wanted to properly address the claims against himself, and against his former friend and collaborator, Dom Zeglaitis, known online as Durte Dom.
An unnamed accuser alleged to Insider that Zeglaitis raped her, and that she was pressured to drink to the point that she could no longer consent to sex.
She claimed Dobrik was present and used the incident for a ‘threesome plot’ in one of his vlogs. The video has since been taken down from YouTube.
In his new video, Dobrik began: ‘I’ve put myself in a lot of situations where I’ve needed to apologise for my past actions and I’ve never done this correctly, I’ve never done this respectfully, and my last video was a testament to that – I don’t want to defend that video.
‘I want to start this video off by saying I fully believe the woman who came out against Dom and said she was [censored] by him.
‘As was reported, the next day I got consent to post the video. Even though I got the consent to post that video, I should never have posted it and what I understand now and I didn’t understand before is that she sent that text because she felt like she had to, not because she wanted to, and that’s f**ked up and I’m sorry.’
He added that when she contacted him directly, he took the video down, adding: ‘I want to apologise to her and her friends for ever putting them in an environment that I enabled that made them feel like their safety and values were compromised. I am so sorry.
‘I was completely disconnected from the fact that, when people were invited to film videos with us, especially videos that relied on shock for views, or whatever it was, that I was creating an unfair power dynamic. I did not know this before. It was completely wrong and I wish I was more responsible and I wish I was more aware at the time and I’m so sorry I missed that.
‘I didn’t know what was going on in that room and I should have been. I should have been there and I should have been making sure that everybody involved was taken care of, and wasn’t uncomfortable.’
Dobrik went on to apologise for taking Zeglaitis’ word for what happened in various situations, giving him a platform, and making jokes out of sexual assault.
He explained that he made the decision to no longer film with Zeglaitis in 2019.
‘What I didn’t do, was I didn’t go back to any of these women and apologise,’ Dobrik continued.
‘I moved on and I learned from it and I grew from it, but I didn’t address the situation with these women – I’m not talking publicly, I’m saying even privately. I didn’t reach out to any of these people and that breaks my heart knowing that I was doing all this stuff and I was making all this content while there were people that were still really hurt from what I made.’
‘It was cowardly of me to say in my last apology that I missed the mark,’ Dobrik added. ‘Because it’s f**king gross and I’m sorry.’
‘I’m sorry to everybody that I’ve let down. I’m sorry to my family, I’m sorry to the friends I’ve embarrassed and this won’t happen again,’ he said.
The YouTuber went on to say that he’s planning to take a short break from social media to correct the lack of infrastructure around his content, adding that he wants people to be able to express discomfort if they need to.
He finished the video by saying he wanted to give people the opportunity to reach out if he’s hurt them in the past, and that he’ll be reaching out on his own to people too.
Zeglaitis has not addressed these allegations, but recently spoke out against previous allegations from former Vlog Squad member Seth Francois.
Francois, who also used to film with Dobrik, claimed the YouTuber made him kiss Jason Nash, another member of the Vlog Squad, without his consent, and made him film racial jokes he wasn’t comfortable with.
In his video, which was uploaded before the publication of the recent allegations against him, Zeglaitis said he he wanted to take ‘accountability for his actions.’
He apologised to ‘people I worked with that I may have disrespected’ and people who were affected by his actions.
He went on to say that he and Dobrik ‘drifted apart’ and he supported Francois, before apologising for not saying anything at the time of filming.
In his previous video, Dobrik apologised to Francois, saying: ‘With the Seth situation, I’m sorry to Seth because, like I said, I just want to make videos where everybody in it, whether you’re participating or watching, is enjoying and having a good time, and I missed the mark with that one, and I’m really sorry, I truly, truly am.’
Victim Support offers support to survivors of rape and sexual abuse. You can contact them on 0333 300 6389.