The story about the jilted YouTuber who took a cross-country trip just to have a word with Google about his deleted channel has taken a darkly funny new twist.
33-year-old Kyle Long, a resident of Waterville, Maine, was arrested Sunday in Mountain View after local police were alerted to his impending arrival by multiple other jurisdictions. The police department of Waterville passed along a tip they received that Long was headed to Mountain View and might resort to violence if his meeting with Google/YouTube didn't go as he hoped. (Maine State Police also know Long has a criminal history, including a low-speed chase he led them on in 2015.) Also, Iowa State Patrol reported to Mountain View Police that they had had two run-ins with Long on Friday, including one involving a non-injury collision and a second involving the vandalizing of a gas station restroom.
But now as BuzzFeed reports, after talking with Long's family, the story gets a bit more humorous — though it seems that Long has a history of mental illness, and I am not trying to make light of that. Long's wife, Samantha Long, confirms to BuzzFeed that she was the culprit in the removal of a video Long posted — the only video, apparently, on his deleted channel — because she was embarrassed that her husband had made a "rambling" and "bizarre" video that was available to the public.
"I just didn't tell him it was me taking it down because I didn't want him losing his shit in front of my kids," Samantha Long tells BuzzFeed. "He was mad initially, but I said I didn't know what happened."
Kevin Long, Kyle's father, further explains that the video entailed a "crazy idea to make everyone millionaires," and apparently he became obsessed with the video and further obsessed when it was taken offline. Kyle Long was convinced, apparently, that if he sat down with executives at Google, they would be so impressed with his ideas that they would pay him billions of dollars.
Samantha Long explains that her husband initially drove to Boston to find Google's headquarters there, and when he couldn't find them, the next thing she knew he was calling her from Kansas. She insists that his intent was not to confront Google execs about the removal of his video, but rather to pitch them on his idea in the belief that they would reward him for it.
This story, of course, could have had a far graver ending — and Long remains in custody in Santa Clara County as far as we know, and perhaps the story isn't over.
In April 2018, you likely recall, 39-year-old Nasim Aghdam of San Diego drove to YouTube's San Bruno headquarters, camped out there for a time, and then entered the building with a weapon. She fired several shots, wounding three people, before turning the gun on herself. Aghdam was allegedly mad that YouTube had demonetized some of her content as part of the larger "adpocalypse" that came in response to advertiser boycotts.