How (and why) Minecraft YouTube raised hundreds of thousands for cancer research

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How (and why) Minecraft YouTube raised hundreds of thousands for cancer research

In late August, millions of Minecraft fans around the world lit up when they saw a “new videonotification from Technoblade, who, with 9.28 million subscribers, currently has one of the largest Minecraft YouTube channels. The unprecedented streamer hadn’t uploaded a video or streamed in two months, and dedicated viewers had been anticipating a new video for a while.

However, upon opening it, many were surprised by the gloomy title, “where have I been”, and the strange thumbnail, which was nothing more than a black screen. Personally, I was a bit relieved when I started watching the video and realized that he was another one of my favorite YouTubers. bed wars comments, rather than a face cam video or other unusual video style that other YouTubers often use in their bad news videos. I thought it would explain some understandable reason why I hadn’t been active online: recent controversies. General stress. Maybe he had just been going through a period of demotivation.

The real news hit me like a bomb: I had cancer.

The news was unexpected and jarring for all Minecraft YouTube and Twitch viewers, not just dedicated Techno fans. Mary Davis ’22 mostly watches WilburSoot Y tommyinnitnot Technoblade, but his friend, a Techno fan, had told him about the video and said it was “bad” without explaining why.

“I was in a rehearsal of something or other, and I was like, ‘Okay, I’ll see you later,'” Davis began. “So I open it on my phone when I’m walking somewhere, and when he said he had cancer, there was a beep after he said I was like, ‘Is this a meme and it’s coming off YouTube and this is its way? to say that? Because I don’t think 21-year-olds don’t think about getting cancer, you know?

Since then, the Minecraft community at large has seen an outpouring of love for one of our most viewed content creators. #TECHNOLOGICAL SUPPORT was trending on Twitter for several days, and everyone from viewers to streamers themselves were putting in their efforts to donate to cancer research.

The Minecraft Championships (MCC) hosted an event on August 28, the day after Technoblade announced his diagnosis, and several content creators pledged to donate tens of thousands of dollars to cancer research. popular youtuber Sleep, for example, pledged to donate a dollar for every point his team earned in the event; he ended up donating $21,409, with other content creators skeptical Y awesamdude agreeing to match the donation, totaling $64,227 from the three streamers alone. streamers F1NNSTER Y Tap L they announced that they would donate a dollar for each point they individually received. Known Twitch streamer bottom he pledged to donate all proceeds from his MCC broadcast and an additional charity broadcast afterward to the same cause. minecraft youtuber grian stated on the broadcast that he would donate a portion of his funds to cancer research, independent of MCC. Finally, the Aqua Axolotls team, made up of streamers Tubbo_, Antfrost, Fundy and 5up, fiance $50 for each time they swore during the broadcast. Many of those who did not donate money played their part in raising cancer awareness by using lavender ribbons on their in-game avatars during the event.

All of this took place two months ago, but the Minecraft community remains strong in its outpouring of support for Technoblade. Just a few weeks ago, on September 25, he did a benefit broadcast for the Sarcoma Foundation of America, and he strongly implied during the broadcast that this was his type of cancer. In just under four hours, he was able to raise nearly $400,000 for cancer research.

[Spoilers for Technoblade’s latest stream ahead!]

Although I was unfortunately not present to see the event live, the stream it has since gained over seven million views, and while not very high relative to the viewership of regular Technoblade videos, this is an incredible number for a four-hour broadcast. The premise of the stream was that it would try to beat survival Minecraft, while viewers could donate a certain amount of money to help or hinder it. This would include everything from removing the item in your hand for $150 to spawning a friendly wolf companion for $50. Initially, every time a certain donation milestone was reached, a new “hunter” – a fellow content creator – would enter into the game to stop Techno from reaching his goal.

I was amazed at the speed at which he reached the milestones. The broadcast was meant to be one of many charity events that would take place over 28 days, with the goal for that month being to raise $250,000. Spectators demolished that goal by raising that amount in two hours. In all, he donated and raised $382,000 for cancer research in a single event.

Given its success already, I’m very excited to see what exciting content Technoblade comes up with in the future for charity. As the events get more and more exciting, I wouldn’t be surprised if viewers manage to rake in millions over the 28-day period or if Technoblade breaks some kind of viewership record along the way.

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From the solidarity between so many of my beloved Minecraft creators wearing lavender ribbons during the MCC to the hundreds of thousands of dollars raised for cancer research, I’m incredibly proud of the Minecraft YouTube community. As someone who has (thankfully) never had to experience the anguish of having a loved one suffer from cancer, I foolishly thought it wasn’t something that affected me. Since then, I have taken the time to educate myself on sarcoma, which has had relatively less research. Educating myself has helped me deal with the news and stay strong.

The community has been doing the same, making sure to take into account the context of the news; After all, our favorite content creator is young, has access to the best healthcare, and has no history of chronic health problems, as far as we know.

“The tone I’ve been getting from him [Techno] and his friends is that this is not fatal,” Davis said. “I was more concerned when I found out than I am now.”

We think he will beat cancer the same way he beat many other YouTubers and streamers in Minecraft duels. And when he finally recovers, we will once again invade Twitter and YouTube with the trademark Techno tagline: “Technoblade Never Dies!”

Claire Shin is a contributing writer for The Prospect at the ‘Prince.’ She can be contacted at claireshin@princeton.eduor on Instagram and TikTok at @claireshin86.

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