This changed over the weekend when the forum began sharing videos by a book vlogger known as Katie.
“Hi /lit/,” one user wrote, “what do you think of the ‘Booktuber’ trend?”
“Fuck… I lost hard,” one user wrote, referring to the 4chan meme “You Love, You Lose”—posting images of hot women with the intention of finding a new Internet crush.
/lit/ users thought Katie was cute. They also mocked her, called her a virgin, and wondered out loud if she had “a petticoat … I could look up.”
Then the users went to YouTube to try to get her attention.
Katie took notice.
“This one creeper said that I sounded like a virgin,” she wrote, “and then this other dude … described in like a paragraph what he would do to me if he met me or something and by this I mean in an inappropriate and sexual way.”
She added, “I am so disgusted and feel violated beyond belief.”
While several on the board showed remorse—”I’m fucking ashamed of us,” one wrote—it was too late. Katie took down her YouTube page.
Katie’s Tumblr remains active. A /lit/ user claimed to have sent her the 4chan thread she was featured in.
Then the forum braced itself for Katie’s visit. One user wrote “Luv U Katie” on a piece of paper, placed on top of Coke bottles filled, apparently, with urine.
This is not an isolated incident. Sexualized comments about book vloggers, even ostensibly underage ones, is actually a recurring theme on the board.
This is far from the first time female YouTubers have faced harassment on the site, especially of a sexual nature. While they continue to speak out about the abuse they face on it and other social media platforms, the tide still hasn’t turned to make YouTube a safe space for female voices.
Katie did not respond for comment about her harassment.
Illustration by Fernando Alfonso III