HoCo street party fines target popular YouTuber, but he vows to return in 2022
A month after the unsanctioned homecoming party on Broughdale Avenue, near Western University campus, many partygoers face a financial hangover.
City Hall has issued 38 fines totalling $29,000 -- with some Administrative Monetary Penalty notices arriving in the mail as recently as last week.
Two of those fines were just sent to YouTuber/Podcaster Jack Denmo, who launched his online career filming rowdy street parties including HoCo.
“I ain’t paying!” Denmo tells CTV News London. “What I’m going to do is dispute it. Go in and meet with whoever I need to.”
“We are very concerned about the posting of dangerous events on social media platforms such as YouTube,” explains Orest Katolyk, director of Municipal Law Enforcement at City Hall.
Not speaking specifically about Denmo, Katolyk says online videos can fuel unsanctioned parties and dangerous behaviour.
Thirty people were hospitalized at homecoming parties around Western University last month.
“The 15 minutes of fame could easily translate into more than 15 minutes in the back of an ambulance,” he warns.
Katolyk adds that TikTok has started removing rowdy party videos that display dangerous behaviour.
“They are starting to lay down the hammer on this kind of documentation of rowdy behaviour,” admits Denmo. “But realistically this has been going on since universities began, the only difference is now people film it and put it online.”
Denmo’s 2019 video from Broughdale Avenue has garnered more than 717,000 views on YouTube.
He says the combined $1,300 fine wouldn’t impact his online business model, but City Hall’s efforts to crack down on the party have crossed the line.
“It changes my opinion of the country. I don’t want to live in a place where I’m not allowed to walk down the road, or drink a beer on my front lawn. That just sounds crazy whether or not it’s HoCo.”
Denmo believes his videos attract students to attend the schools where he films.
Repeat offenders could see fines doubled according to City Hall, but he vows to be back in September 2022.
“It absolutely does not change anything for me coming there in the future.”