The Tesla fanbase is a loyal bunch; almost like a cult. They obviously can’t fathom a Tesla YouTube star explaining in a new video he’s switching to gas-powered projects. Why? Within hours of posting a video where he rebuilds a Tesla but tells viewers he’s selling it to buy a gas car, it was flagged and removed for violating Community Guidelines. Numbering over 700,000 subscribers to Rich Benoit’s Rich Rebuilds, there’s no tolerance for switching from Teslas to internal combustion cars. Twice now this popular Tesla YouTuber has had his video pulled just for saying he wants a gas car.
Benoit’s Rich Rebuilds YouTube channel focuses on taking salvaged Teslas and then rebuilding them. Tesla guards its parts access, service info, and much more. Then there are the pitfalls of buying a car that in some cases does not reveal its real problems before being purchased. So rebuilding one is more involved than fixing your typical salvage title car. That’s why Rich Rebuilds has over 80 million views.
Tesla fanboys flooded YouTube flagging the post as violating Community Guidelines
So you can imagine the uproar when he posted a video titled, “Why I’m Selling My Tesla and Going Back to Gas.” But it was more than an uproar. Obviously, Tesla fanboys flooded YouTube flagging the post as violating Community Guidelines. YouTube took it down within a few hours of posting.
The video starts out with, “This video is going to be a little bit different. In this episode I’m going to be rebuilding a Tesla Model S. It’s going to be from start to finish in one episode, while I talk over the reasons why I’m switching back to gas. Kind of ironic, isn’t it?”
Benoit then Tweeted, “The Tesla fanboys formed like Voltron and ganged up to flag my video for removal on youtube. The video which was flagged for ‘inappropriate content’ was about me selling my Tesla and buying a gas car instead. Ladies and gentlemen, this is what happens when you anger the hive.”
“I’ve been on YouTube for several years now and I’ve never had a video pulled”
Some supported his change in direction but many more “disliked” the video within minutes. “People clearly did not like the content even though there was no cursing,” Benoit said. “I’ve been on YouTube for several years now and I’ve never had a video pulled, so having a video pulled within five hours after announcing that I’ll be replacing my Tesla with a gas-powered vehicle doesn’t seem like a coincidence.”
When he appealed the violation YouTube reinstated the video. They also told Benoit the video didn’t violate any standards or guidelines. Benoit thought his problems were over.
As a car enthusiast, he wants to diversify his online content to both gas and electric vehicles
Benoit explained he would still be doing Tesla content on his channel. But as a car enthusiast, he wants to diversify his online content to both gas and electric vehicles. Then he ran down the Teslas he and his family have. “I own Teslas and always will. My wife owns a Tesla Model X. My daughter drives a Model S. My kids under 9 drive Mini Power Wheels Teslas. I also have another Model X and a Model S personally,” Benoit said.
Unfortunately, that explanation didn’t help. Within a few hours, the video was pulled for a second time over Community Guidelines violations. What will Benoit do now? He told Vice, “I have given up, yes.” Will he try uploading it again? “It’s not worth me trying for a third time.”