From Chicago suburbanite to internet superstar, famous YouTube video blogger David Dobrik came to Ohio State’s campus Thursday night to talk to students about his experiences.
The event, titled “OUABehind the Vlog with David Dobrik,” was hosted by the Ohio Union Activities Board and attracted 1,555 students. It consisted of a moderated conversation between Dobrik and a student, followed by stage visits from Dobrik’s best-friend-turned-assistant Natalie Mariduana and fellow YouTuber Todd Smith. Later on, a student from the audience was also invited on stage with her service dog.
The 23-year-old Midwestern native covered topics like meeting his favorite celebrity Robert Downey Jr. for the first time, what he does when he’s not vlogging and his favorite giveaways, such as giving cash or cars to his close friends and strangers.
“Giving people things is the most selfish thing you can do because the reaction is priceless,” Dobrik said during the event. “Anyone in my position would do the same thing 100 percent.”
Dobrik, who has more than 15 million YouTube subscribers and 11 million Instagram followers, also discussed a recent vlog in which he married his best friend’s 76-year-old mother in Las Vegas just to become his friend’s stepfather.
“How am I going to tell the story if I fake marry someone?” Dobrik said during the event. “She was such a good sport about me marrying her.”
Though the event started at 7 p.m., Dobrik and some members of his group — dubbed the “Vlog Squad” — made the rounds on campus earlier in the day and gave one student $10,000 toward tuition for making a half-court shot in the RPAC, according to multiple student witnesses.
“It took like 60-80 tries, and one kid finally got it, and it was great,” Dobrik said during an interview with The Lantern.
Rachel Fall, a first-year in computer and information science, said she has been watching Dobrik’s videos since 2016.
“[Dobrik’s vlogs] are making a lot of people happy,” Fall said.
Dobrik has also been happy traveling for these events.
“We’ve been doing a bunch of different colleges, and it’s fun interacting with kids, especially from the Midwest,” Dobrik said. “People from the Midwest are so much sweeter than anywhere else.”