Believe it or not, but it’s been a whole decade since Chris Crocker entered the internet Hall of Fame with his passionate plea for the gruelling media and trolls to leave. Britney. alone!
2007 marked a low period for Britney Spears.
The princess of pop walked out of rehab before shaving her own head, she was experiencing a tough custody battle with her now ex-husband Kevin Federline, she was charged with various driving offences and was suffering from mental illness.
One thing that wasn’t suffering, however, was her music career. Yes, despite all that she was going through, Britney still released a number of hits including 'Gimme More' and 'Piece of Me'.
That was, until Britney performed 'Gimme More' live at the VMAs; an award show she usually dominated, i.e. the 'I’m A Slave For You' snake performance, the ‘Like A Virgin’ Madonna/Christina kiss and the 'Satisfaction/Oops I did It Again' ‘nude’ oufit performance.
Yes, Britney was known to lip sync a little, but this performance had Britney failing to do what she did best: dance. Brit’s lack lustre chorey and overall performance was described as a ‘nightmare’.
But amongst all the scrutiny, one fan stood up and used his voice to end the hate. Chris Crocker was shaken and in tears by how Britney was being treated, so he took out his camera, hopped under his bed sheets and gave us one of the most famous YouTube videos and phrases of all time…
(Warning: this video contains mature themes)
Now, ten years on, he has taken to social media once again to reflect on his actions.
“10 years ago on this day, I defended my favorite pop star against the media.
"While I'm known to do comedy: This was the one video that I was serious in. That year, my mom was battling addiction & became homeless after serving for our country in Iraq. The struggles in my home life and family life made me defensive over any woman going through a hard time.
"The internet and YouTube was a very different, less LGBT friendly place at the time. Nothing I said in the video was listened to. I was mocked for my femininity. I was called every gay slur in the book. Talk show hosts questioned if I was a man or woman, after playing the clip.
"I knew there was no way people would take me serious. So I decided that I would play up to the joke everyone thought I was. Realizing that telling them about what had actually triggered my emotional reaction (What my mom was battling) wouldn't be of interest to anyone. So I gave them a cartoon of what they assumed I was, in my public appearances afterward.
"But the truth is and always was about standing up for someone and not standing idly by when you see someone being hurt by others. In the 10 years since this video- A lot of LGBT Youtubers are celebrated for who they are. I often wonder if I had started videos later, if I would've been treated differently. But what I will say is this: Even if I got a public beating for standing up for what's right: Im happy I did. And I'll always love @britneyspears ❤️”
He has also uploaded this video to Twitter explaining what he has learnt since then.
(Warning: Strong language)
Thank you for standing up for Britney all those years ago, Chris!