Russell Brand Makes First Public Statement Following Sexual Assault Accusations, Invites Supporters To “Follow Me On Rumble Because That’s The Only Way That We Can Keep Our Voice”
In addressing the public for the first time since being hit with a quartet of sexual assault accusations, Russell Brand has both thanked his supporters for “questioning the information that you have been presented with” and invited those who wish to hear his side of the story uncensored to follow him on Rumble.
Breaking his silence in a video published to his various social media accounts on September 22nd, The Despicable Me series voice actor opened, “Hello there you awakening wonders, obviously it’s been an extraordinary and distressing week, and I thank you very much for your support, and for questioning the information that you have been presented with.”
“By now, you’re probably aware that the British government has asked big tech platforms to censor our online content and that some online platforms have complied with that request,” said Brand. “What you may not know is that this happens in the context of the online safety bill which is a piece of UK legislation that grants sweeping surveillance and censorship powers and it’s a law that’s already been passed”
“I also don’t imagine that you’ve heard of the trusted news initiative,” he continued. “And now, as often is the case when a word like ‘trusted’ is used as part of an acronym to describe an unelected body, trust is the last thing you should be offering.
“The Trusted News Initiative is a collaboration between big tech and legacy media organizations to target, control, choke and shut down independent media organizations – like this one,” explained the actor. “We’ll be talking about that on our show on Monday on Rumble, but just to give you an idea on what the TNI is, this is a quote from one of their spokespeople.”
At this point in his statement, Brand highlighted digital civil liberties news outlet Reclaim The Net’s coverage of a 2022 statement made by the BBC, as cited in an antitrust lawsuit filed against the collaborative effort in January of this year by current Democratic presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., wherein one of the broadcasters’ representatives explained that the TNI was formed “because actually the real rivalry now is not between for example the BBC and CNN globally, it’s between all trusted news providers and … digital platforms.”
It should be noted that though Brand attributes the quote presented to the aforementioned outlet, the use of an ellipses to shorten its content was a decision made exclusively by the actor and his team, Kennedy, Jr. presented a far more comprehensive record of Cecil’s interview in his lawsuit.
However, the presidential candidate’s presentation of the quote was also edited for content, albeit in different ways.
The original statement being cited by Kennedy, Jr. and Brand, as first made by BBC Senior News Controller Jamie Angus during a March 2022 interview with BBC Broadcaster Philippa Thomas, reads as follows:
“Of course the members of the Trusted News Initiative are both peers and rivals and this is a sort of unique chemistry of what we’re trying to do and it’s something we’ve always discussed amongst us as a group.
But in a crisis situation like this, absolutely, organizations have to focus on the things they have in common, rather than their, necessarily, commercial and reach rivalries. It’s great that you’ve picked out a couple of examples where we’ve taken news materials from our trusted news agency partners, materials from the EPA during the war.
We’ve collaborated with [Netherlands-based investigative journalism group] Bellingcat and with other investigative bodies because we have more in common with them and it’s important to these moments of crisis that trusted news providers clump together. Because actually the real rivalry now is not between for example the BBC and CNN globally, it’s actually between all trusted news providers and a tidal wave of unchecked, incorrect, or in fact explicitly malicious nonsense that’s being piped out mainly through digital platforms, specifically to destabilize regions of the world. That’s the real competition now in the digital media world.
Of course organizations will always compete against one another for audiences. But the existential threat I think is that overall breakdown in trust, so that trusted news organizations lose in the long term if audiences just abandon the idea of a relationship of trust with news organizations. So actually we’ve got a lot more to hold us together than we have to work in competition with one another.”
Following his citation of Kennedy, Jr.’s lawsuit, Brand declared, “It’s clear that these organizations collaborate in constructing narratives, whether that’s around the war or the pandemic, and of course there are other examples, and it’sv ery clear to me that we have to be very, very cautious indeed.”
“That’s why I’m asking you to follow me on Rumble,” he then requested of his followers, making reference to the video sharing platform’s recent rejection of the UK Parliament’s request to outright ban him from their service. “Rumble have made a clear commitment to free speech and Rumble is the primary platform that we will be streaming from.”
“We’ll be back this Monday, and as usual, we’ll be talking about Deep State and corporate collusion and how ordinary democracy is anathema now,” he then assured. “How it’s shut down, ignored, and avoided. We’ll be talking about a military-industrial complex that is able to facilitate and start wars that seem, sometimes, to be little more than money laundering operations – and that’s with all respect to the hundreds of thousands of victims of the numerous ongoing wars in the world at the moment.”
“We’ll be talking about the role of big pharma and how Big pharma have been able to influence government policy around the world and how they’ve been able to evade due liability and necessary scrutiny,” he further teased. “How they’ve been able to avoid media investigation, but perhaps [we] ought to redo them. And of course we’ll be talking about media corruption and censorship. So please follow me on Rumble because that’s the only way that we can keep our voice.”
“You can go to RB.Rumble.com to support me directly and keep me and our channel independent,” concluded Brand, providing a Rumble link which redirects supporters to a page inviting them to purchase a paid subscription to his Locals account. “And I need your support now more than ever, and more than I ever imagined I would. So follow me, support our channel if you can, if it’s within your means. But more important than any of that, is that you please, if you can, stay free.”