In June the young YouTube star Ingrid Nilsen came out as gay on YouTube in an emotional video. Now Shane Dawson, another YouTube luminary, has used his YouTube platform to tell his 6.7 million followers that he’s bisexual. Dawson’s heart-to-heart with nearly 7 million people was framed this way: “Love is love. Don’t be afraid to be who you are.” For a long time, Dawson was afraid, as he says in the video.
Dawson gained fame for his parodies of Lady Gaga and Kim Kardashian, proving equally adept at mimicking talent and its opposite. (Though there is no denying Ms. Kardashian West’s talent for business.) Dawson breaks new ground, delivering perhaps more complex news than even Nilsen gave her fans. Whereas Nilsen displayed conviction, relief and joy in her announcement, Dawson’s video still had a tinge of regret: he said he wished he could be “100% gay” but that his situation was more complicated than that. It’s a brave announcement for Dawson. He makes clear in his account the types of brutal battles he fought against his family and environment in order to find himself.