Elon Musk appears to have fallen out with Russell Brand after being left ‘disappointed’ the comedian plugged social media platform Rumble in his latest YouTube rant rather than his own service – but had nothing to say on the rape, sexual assault and emotional abuse allegations the comedian currently faces.
Last night Brand broke his silence since the accusations came to light, claiming he has faced an ‘extraordinary and distressing week’ after being accused of rape, sexual assault and emotional abuse by multiple women.
Speaking in a short three minute video the under fire comedian thanked his followers for their ‘support and for questioning the information that you have been presented with’.
Musk, who owns X, formerly known as Twitter, said Brand’s comments were ‘rather disappointing’ after the comedian made references to conspiracy theories before telling fans he would post a longer video on Rumble soon.
Brand’s new video came just hours after a woman claimed the comic left her feeling ‘vulnerable and intimidated’, allegedly refusing to call a taxi for her to leave until she performed a sex act.
Last night Brand broke his silence since the accusations came to light, claiming he has faced an ‘extraordinary and distressing week’ after being accused of rape, sexual assault and emotional abuse by multiple women
Musk, who owns X, formerly known as Twitter , said Brand’s comments were ‘rather disappointing’
Musk last night responded to a user who shared Brand’s video, making no reference to the awful array of allegations facing him, and said: ‘It is rather disappointing that he is exclusively pushing Rumble when X has supported free speech just as much.’
It marks a significant change from the billionaire businessman, who previously appeared to voice his support for Brand.
Responding to the comic’s claims that the allegations against him were a result of a campaign to silence him, Musk said: ‘Of course, they don’t like competition.’
This appeared to be in reference to mainstream media, but Musk’s change of stance means Brand has lost one of his few major backers.
Brand is facing claims that he raped, sexually assaulted and emotionally abused various women after the Times and Channel 4’s dispatches ran a joint investigation into his behaviour.
Four women were featured in the documentary, including one who alleges Brand raped her against the wall of his LA home after she refused to engage in a threesome with him and another woman.
Since the investigation, which took more than a year to produce, further women have come forward with new allegations, including one who described Brand exposing himself to her – before joking about it on a BBC radio show.
‘Olivia’ came forward this week alleging that Brand exposed himself to her in an office where BBC Los Angeles operated from in 2008.
Brand is facing claims that he raped, sexually assaulted and emotionally abused various women after the Times and Channel 4’s dispatches ran a joint investigation into his behaviour
Musk initially appeared to support the comedian’s dismissal of the serious accusations against him
The comic was said to have been in the building to filming a pre-recorded edition of his BBC Radio 2 programme on June 16 that year.
The programme, that went out just five days later, featured a clip of Brand and his co-host appearing to joke about the incident, with his co-host Matt Morgan noting: ‘It’s been 25 minutes since he showed his willy to a lady.’
She alleged that she answered the door to Brand and his team before going into the bathroom to get some medication.
As she turned around from the medicine cabinet, she alleged Brand was stood in front of her with his groin in her face. She claimed that he remarked: ‘I think you’re a bit of alright…I’m going to f*** you.’
She added that as she attempted to rebuff him Brand pulled out his penis and ‘pretty much served it to me as you would someone serving food’.
Media outlets including the BBC have launched internal probes to examine Brand’s time working on their content.
Last night, Brand did not directly address any of the claims against him, but made baseless accusations of a conspiracy to ‘target, patrol, choke and shut down independent media organisations.’
He said: ‘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.
‘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.’
He added: ‘I also don’t imagine that you’ve heard of the trusted news initiative 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 organisations to target, patrol, choke and shut down independent media organisations, like this one.’
Brand said he would be returning his show on Rumble – an online video platform where subscribers pay a minimum $60 (£48) fee to watch – after adverts on his YouTube channel were suspended in light of the allegations.
Brand denies all the allegations made against him, previously saying all his relationships have been ‘consensual’.