It seems like scandals among YouTube and Twitch personalities are becoming more and more frequent as of late, and we have another one that’s making people look at a popular online content creator in a whole other light.
Jared Knabenbauer, also known as ProJared, is a Youtuber who’s been active online for quite some time. His channel has always seemed rather wholesome, mostly talking about retro games from the libraries of the NES, SNES, Sega Genesis, N64 and other classic systems. However, according to his now ex-wife, his personal life is everything but wholesome.
Heidi O’Ferrall, a cosplayer who goes by the name AtelierHeidi, has alleged that Knabenbauer cheated on her with Holly Conrad. Conrad is also a cosplayer known as Commander Holly online, and was married to animator and GameGrumps collaborator Ross O’Donovan up until last year. Conrad and Knabenbauer appeared on the DnD stream Dice, Camera, Action as part of the Waffle Crew.
Knabenbauer posted a statement on his Twitter account regarding the situation, stating that he and O’Ferrall had filed for divorce after couples therapy failed to improve their marriage.
O’Ferrall was unable to read this statement however, as Knabenbauer had blocked her from viewing any of his tweets.
Reading the explicit messages between my husband and his mistress is an experience I would not wish on anyone. I basically discovered that they've been hooking up on all their work trips since last fall, and meeting together secretly since she moved here.— Heidi O'Ferrall✨ (@AtelierHeidi) May 9, 2019
From there, O’Ferrall declared that she possessed definitive proof that Knabenbauer had cheated on her with Conrad, including nude pictures and “explicit messages” sent between the two. She stated that he blatantly lied about the affair between himself and Conrad, and that he was emotionally abusing and gaslighting her. She also stated that his statement was an attempt to silence her while simultaneously making the split seem amicable.
Conrad didn’t help matters on her end. She tweeted at Knabenbauer saying “I’m so sorry you’re going through this. I’m here for you if you need me.” Needless to say that this was met with a significant amount of animosity from fans, and Conrad has since said that she is taking a break from social media.
I hope that now that pictures are starting to surface of his inappropriate pictures to girls, the more skeptical people will see that he isn't innocent as others are claiming.— Big Jake (@Actual_Big_Jake) May 9, 2019
He regularly asked fans for nudes on tumblr and would encourage people to join his “18+ Snapchat” and it definitely rubbed me the wrong way. I am so sorry that he was doing this.— Ann 💐 (@yewlith) May 9, 2019
It gets worse from there, as now there are many fans who have revealed that Knabenbauer sent them nude photos of himself. Knabenbauer would then ask fans to send him explicit pictures back on Tumblr or Snapchat. What’s even worse than that, is that some of these fans were reportedly underaged.
Since the cheating scandal came to light, members of Knabenbauer’s own subreddit for his ProJared channel have turned on the content creator. The forum is now full of posts mocking him for his infidelity, as well as devoting posts to O’Ferrall, as well as fellow YouTubers like James Rolfe or JonTron. He’s even been removed as a moderator in his own subreddit. As if that wasn’t a big enough blow, his YouTube channel is now hemorrhaging subscribers, losing nearly 30,000 since the news broke.
It seems like this is yet another tale of a moderately popular online personality abusing his privilege for his own selfish needs. It’s hard to say if there’s really a way for ProJared to bounce back from this, as he’s lost the respect and admiration of several fans. Without that, it’s going to be pretty hard to continue making funny review videos for Final Fantasy games.
Jared Knabenbauer has yet to respond to the allegations against him.