Is FunForLouis Making North Korean Propaganda?
17 August 2016, 14:43 | Updated: 17 July 2017, 12:19
What is going on?
If you don't happen to be one of the 1.8 million people that subscribe to FunForLouis' channel, then you won't know that the British travel YouTuber was given the chance to head to North Korea, one of the most reclusive nations in the world, and permitted to daily vlog his experiences there.
If you do follow Louis Cole on his daily adventures then you will know that everyday is filled with positivity and usually, a different culture for him to explore. He is constantly documenting his travels from all around the world, but at the beginning of this month he decided to head to North Korea with a group of other vloggers - and he loved it.
As expected, a lot of his friends, family and fans were concerned about his latest adventure and his fellow YouTuber and girlfriend, Raya Encheva, even expressed her worry in a teary vlog on her channel, explaining: "I'm just terrified because Louis is in North Korea, and if you know anything about North Korea then you will know that it's scary and people get arrested."
Over the past week, the daily vlogger has been uploading videos documenting his time in North Korea, but he has been criticised for completely overlooking some of the country's biggest problems. As he has witnessed first hand one of the most repressive nations in the world, some of his fans have been disappointed in Louis for only shining a light on the positives, these namely being water-parks and 'North Korean Surfer Chicks'.
These videos have been combined with a series of very upbeat captions on his Twitter, such as "Did you know North Korea have amazing water parks?" and "I bet you've never seen this side of North Korea!" He already posted a disclaimer in a video description that he's "trying to focus on positive things in the country and combat the purely negative image we see in the media", but this kind of positivity from Louis has already made people suspicious as to whether he is acting as an inadvertent propaganda tool for this very secretive country.
The North Korean capital, Pyongyang
It has yet to be made clear whether the North Korean government has had any input into what was shown in the YouTuber's vlogs, but in an article for Vanity Fair, Richard Lawson stated: "All I know is the North Korean government tends to take a pretty active role in deciding who gets to tour around their country shooting video and sending it out to the world." That means that it's highly likely that the positive spin in Louis' videos might not be wholly his choice. It is also highly possible that a person operating in a country that has no problem imprisoning foreigners for minimal offences may be erring on the side of caution when it comes to criticising the nation on camera. Perhaps he will be more critical now that he has returned? We will soon find out.
Make sure to let us know what you think about FunForLouis' latest adventure in the comments and in the meantime, check out our latest episode of SLAY or NAY.