A YouTube personality known for pranks and hoaxes says he was not joking around on Wednesday prior to getting kicked off a Delta Airlines flight at Heathrow Airport in London.
Adam Saleh has over 2 million followers on YouTube and an extra 293,000 on Twitter, thanks in large part to his penchant for prank videos. He claims he was escorted off a Delta flight to New York on Tuesday after speaking in Arabic on the phone to his mother.
“Delta Airlines are kicking us out because we spoke a different language!” he told his Twitter followers on Wednesday while filming the incident. “You guys are racist!”
His social media clout prompted the hashtag #BoycottDelta to trend on Twitter on Wednesday.
“Two customers were removed from this flight and later rebooked after a disturbance in the cabin resulted in more than 20 customers expressing their discomfort,” Delta said in a statement as media outlets picked up the story “We’re conducting a full review to understand what transpired. We are taking allegations of discrimination very seriously; our culture requires treating others with respect.”
Fans of the YouTube personality appeared to dismiss concerns that his digital past is littered with hoaxes and pranks.
“I am now afraid to speak my native language while traveling because I might get kicked out of the plane, Thanks Delta,” wrote Sebb Argo.
“Stereotyping an entire religion for the actions of extremists is how you create more terrorists, not fight terrorism,” said Christopher Zullo.
“If you’re uncomfortable with people speaking their native language maybe stop vacationing in those countries too,” added another.
Mr. Saleh’s manager also told BuzzFeed News that his client’s latest claims are
“as real as it gets.”
Content Warning: Video contains strong language.