Celebrities

5 positive alternatives to Andrew Tate who teenage boys should be watching

Romanian court upholds 'misogynist influencer' Andrew Tate's 30-day detention

Let’s start by being clear: there are no “perfect” influencers, and anyone who’s managed to amass millions of followers online will no doubt have courted controversy somewhere along the way.

However, it’s safe to say that even flawed content creators are a hell of a lot better than the likes of Andrew Tate.

The nefarious power that the self-styled king of toxic masculinity holds over young men and boys is a source of great concern to parents, teachers and social media companies alike.

But the fact of the matter is young people like big personalities and explosive content, so they inevitably gravitate towards whoever’s making the biggest waves on their favourite platforms.

Fortunately, there are plenty of heavyweights on TikTok, YouTube, Discord, Twitch, Instagram and Snapchat, who promote less problematic messages and lifestyles.

Sign up for our free Indy100 weekly newsletter

Here, we take a look at five male stars who, like Tate, enjoy massive success across the internet but who don’t talk about choking women or boasting about their Bugattis and Ferraris.

MrBeast

YouTube subscribers: 129 million

We repeat: these influencers aren’t perfect, and YouTube’s highest-paid star is no stranger to causing offence BUT there are positives to MrBeast’s content.

The 24-year-old from Kansas (real name Jimmy Donaldson), whose net worth was estimated at a staggering $100 million (around £81 million) in 2021, has made his fortune by creating elaborate and expensive stunts, some of which – including a real-life recreation of Netflix series Squid Game – have caused considerable upset.

However, when it comes to his mega riches, rather than boasting about having “a big mansion and super cars”, as Tate has repeatedly done, MrBeast promotes the image of himself as a philanthropist. Indeed, he even has a YouTube channel and a separate website dedicated to his charitable endeavours.

His fundraising work includes rebuilding an orphanage in Africa, rebuilding homes for tornado survivors, and carrying out 10,000 random acts of kindness.

We're Rebuilding an Orphanage in Africa!youtu.be

On the Beast Philanthropy site, it states: “In June 2017, when Jimmy Donaldson (AKA MrBeast) received his first YouTube sponsorship deal of $10,000, he wondered, ‘how can I transform this money into something good?’ Not wanting to keep the money for himself, Jimmy agreed to the sponsorship deal with one condition: he was able to give away all of the money. The sponsor agreed.”

It continues: “This first giveaway ignited a flame within Jimmy, and every charitable act fueled his desire to help those in need.”

The blurb ends: “Beast Philanthropy exists to leverage the power of social media platforms and raise funds to alleviate hunger, homelessness, and unemployment. Beast Philanthropy will provide life-changing grants, assistance, and both monetary and non-monetary gifts to individuals and families. With your support, Beast Philanthropy will change the world.”

We’d rather our kids read about that than about Tate’s views on “the masculine perspective” that’s for sure.

Markiplier

YouTube subscribers: 34.3 million

Markiplier, real name Mark Fischbach, is known predominantly as one of the biggest gaming influencers. However, he has also spoken openly about personal tragedy, including his struggle to cope with the death of his dad, from lung cancer, and his niece in a car accident.

As a result of his loss, he has become a major fundraiser for the Cancer Research Institute (CRI), earning himself an award for his long-standing support of the non-profit.

“Since 2013, Markiplier has creatively leveraged his 50.5 million followers across social media through fun events to raise over $500,000 (around £410,000) for CRI’s programs and increase awareness for medical research and public health among young individuals,” its website states.

The gaming icon is one of YouTube's highest-paid starsThe gaming icon is one of YouTube's highest-paid starsMarkiplier/YouTube


W2S (aka Wroetoshaw)

YouTube subscribers: 16.3 million

Harry Lewis, known as Wroetoshaw or W2S, isn’t perhaps what you’d expect from a YouTube star.

The 26-year-old hails from the small Channel Island of Guernsey, which isn’t known for producing internet sensations. But in 2013, he became a member of the Sidemen – a British YouTube group consisting of Josh Bradley, Simon Minter, Tobi Brown, Ethan Payne, Vikram Barn and KSI.

The friends originally began by playing video games together but went on to produce more varied content and are now among the UK’s biggest YouTube groups.

And whilst W2S dropped out of school at 17 to pursue a career in Youtubing, he has promoted the importance of education in his own way.

In 2015 he told fans that he’d got As in maths, and tweeted: “[If] anyone gets all A/A*s in their GCSE's [sic] tomorrow tweet me a pic and you can have £50 on PayPal for being a G.”

He later sent screenshots to prove that he’d sent the money.

And even if it was all just a silly gimmick, rewarding good results is certainly not the worst thing that’s ever come out of Twitter.

JiDion

YouTube subscribers: 6.26 million

The former Twitch streamer (real name Jidon Adams), who is now more widely known for his comical reaction and prank videos, sealed his status as a big-shot creative when he was named by Logan Paul and KSI as the first member of their “Prime Squad” in 2022.

According to Paul, the squad is a “group of up-and-comers” who he and KSI want to “help and amplify in whatever way [they] can”.

JiDion is no saint, and was permanently banned from Twitch after encouraging his fans to “hate-raid” fellow streamer Pokimaine.

However, following the fall-out, JiDion admitted he’d behaved foolishly and took the time to sit down and talk things out with Pokimaine instead.

JiDion patched things up with PokimaineJiDion/YouTube


WillNE

YouTube subscribers: 4.85 million

One of Tate’s apparent “selling points” is his chiseled, permatanned physique – yet more proof, he claims, of what an aspirational individual he is. And we all know the pressure young people, in particular, feel to fulfill unrealistic bodily expectations.

It is, therefore, refreshing when internet celebrities offer their fans a healthy dose of reality, and prove that there’s more to life than being ripped.

This is what London-based YouTuber WillNE did back in 2019 . In a video titled ‘What Happens If You Pretend To Be Ripped on Instagram For a Week?’ he decided to transform his bod from “skinny fat” to “hench”.

However, admitting he couldn’t face “gruelling long hours” in the gym, he photoshopped snaps of himself instead, and documented his journey with regular, healthy doses of self-deprecation.

WillNE described his own physique as "skinny fat"WillNE/YouTube


WillNE is perhaps best known for his takes on internet culture and for carrying out elaborate practical jokes including, most recently, tricking his way into giving a TED Talk on a topic he knew nothing about.

Sure, it’s not exactly high-brow content, but it’s the kind of goofiness you would expect teenage boys to watch.

And, we repeat: it’s a hell of a lot better than the hate spewed out by the likes of Andrew Tate.

Have your say in our news democracy. Click the upvote icon at the top of the page to help raise this article through the indy100 rankings.

Please log in or register to upvote this article
The Conversation (0)