39-year-old Nasim Aghdam, who stormed YouTube’s California headquarters with a handgun and reportedly shot 3 YouTube employees before killing herself, did so over a personal vendetta.
Nasim who is a YouTube addict, was angry with the platform over their new policies which has stricter rules and further censors certain videos. The lady who ranted online against the company’s new policies and accused them of censoring her videos, walked into YouTube headquarters wearing glasses and a scarf and opened fire on employees, hitting a man and two women.
Law enforcement officials said the shooting was being investigated as a domestic dispute, after initial reports suggested she had shot her boyfriend and injured two women. Officers and federal agents swarmed the company’s headquarters complex in the city of San Bruno just before 1pm, after dozens of panicked employees called 911 to report gunfire.
Upon arrival, police found the woman dead inside the campus with self-inflicted gunshot wounds.
Aghdam, who described herself as an animal rights activist and vegan bodybuilder, had a significant online presence with multiple YouTube channels and social media pages. Her YouTube channel, where she posted bizarre videos, had more than 5,000 subscribers and got many views but when YouTube introduced its new policies, the views on her video reduced.
In January 2017, she posted a video in which she vented about being censored by the company. She said the company “filtered” her videos and this has caused her to lose views and money. After the shooting, Aghdam’s YouTube channels and social media pages were all removed.
San Bruno Police Chief Ed Barberini said three people were taken to hospitals in San Francisco with gunshot wounds. A 36-year-old man was in critical condition, a 32-year-old woman was in serious condition and a 27-year-old woman was in fair condition following the shooting. The shooter’s father Ismail Aghdam said she had told family members, that the platform had stopped paying her for content she posted on the site. YouTube video creators can earn money from advertisements, but for various reasons the firm sometimes ‘de-monetizes’ channels meaning clips don’t run with adverts.
President Donald Trump and Google CEO, Sundar Pichai, have all tweeted about the ugly incident, said their thoughts and prayers are with everyone who have been affected by the incident.