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A French YouTube Star Was Caught Plagiarizing From American Videos

Mathieu Richard has recently admitted to stealing from U.S. creators.

Posted on February 9, 2016, at 9:10 a.m. ET

Mathieu Richard is a YouTube star from France. Since 2012, he has produced videos under the name Math Podcast. The channel has nearly 25 million views and over 430,000 subscribers.

On Monday, the hashtag #MathPodcastPlagait (Math podcast plagiarism) began trending on Twitter in France.

People began accusing Richard of stealing content from other YouTubers.

#MathPodcastPlagiat Ptn chui choqué et décu jcroyais c'etat lui qui inventait tt 😱 Vive le plagiat de youtubeurs !

"Damn! I’m shocked and disappointed. I thought he created everything on his own! Long live the plagiarism of YouTubers."

Donc des mecs qui plagient ont la masse de succès et nous qui créons galérons ? #MathPodcastPlagiat

"So, guys who plagiarize have huge success and we who create have a hard time?"

The hashtag originated from a discussion on the French forum Jeuxvideo.

The post pointed out that Richard's video "CE QUE LES MECS AIMENT CHEZ LES FILLES" ("what guys like in girls") is a copy of American YouTuber Motoki Maxted's video "Things Guys Like About Girls." /

They also accused Richard of taking ideas from other YouTubers, such as Andrew Quo and Marcus Butler.

One of the members of the forum then compiled a video of what they believed to be examples of Richard's plagiarism.


Maxted told BuzzFeed News that he was actually aware of Richard's plagiarism prior to Monday's hashtag, but had received little response when he called the French YouTuber out on his behaviour.

"A user on Snapchat gave me a link to the forum, in the sub-forum '18-25' (great guys in there), where they found out how he had been stealing my videos," Maxted said. "At this point, I knew Math was stealing my videos, but I didn't know how many he was stealing.

"I had contacted Math before on Facebook and asked him a couple times to give me credit and link my channel in the description of his videos. Anyways, after ignoring me for some time he added my name in the description to some of the videos even though I specifically asked for the link. "

Motoki provided BuzzFeed News with screenshots of him DM'ing Richard, asking for credit.

Motoki Maxted

Richard does appear to have updated one of his video's descriptions.


Another plagiarized YouTuber, Andrew Quo, commented on the forum, thanking the members for bringing the matter to his attention.

"Hey this is Andrew Quo (one of the other youtubers this guy has plagiarized)," he wrote. "Just went through the forum after Motoki told me about it, and first of all thank you all so much for standing up for us. I can't believe someone would copy our videos so thoroughly. I hope we can get some justice out of this."

On Monday, Richard went on French radio station NRJ to defend his actions. Speaking to the host, he admitted to using his American counterparts' work for material.

View this video on YouTube

"I've loved making videos since I was young, but there is something I cannot do, which is write," Richard said. "I had the great idea of watching the Americans and reproducing what they do."

He said he feels OK with the fact his secret has been found out, saying it frees him up to make even more cool videos.

This post originally appeared on BuzzFeed France.

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.