CGP Grey

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CGP Grey
The stick figure CGP Grey uses to represent himself in his videos and elsewhere
Personal information
New York, U.S.
  • American
  • Irish
YouTube information
Also known asGrey
Years active2010–present
Total views
Associated actsHello Internet, Brady Haran, Myke Hurley, Relay FM, Cortex
100,000 subscribers2012 (CGP Grey)[‡ 3]
2016 (CGPGrey2)
1,000,000 subscribers2013 (CGP Grey)[‡ 4]

Last updated: 17 April 2024

CGP Grey is an American educational YouTuber, podcaster, live streamer, and former teacher based in the United Kingdom who creates explanatory videos on subjects including politics, geography, economics, sociology, history, philosophy, and culture. In addition to video production, he is known for creating and hosting the podcasts Hello Internet with Brady Haran and Cortex with Myke Hurley.[1]

Early life and career[edit]

Grey grew up in the Long Island suburbs of New York City. He went to college in upstate New York, earning two degrees: one in physics and another in sociology.[‡ 5] When Grey was a child, his father applied for Irish citizenship on his behalf, and he gained dual American–Irish citizenship.[‡ 6]

Grey's Irish citizenship allowed him to move to the United Kingdom. He attended a masters program in economics in London, where he continues to live.[‡ 7][2] He became a physics teacher while in London.[3]


Grey's primary YouTube channel, CGP Grey, predominantly features explanatory videos[4][5] on subjects including politics, geography, economics, history, productivity, the Internet, transportation, vexillology, science, American culture, and British culture. The videos intend to debunk common misconceptions or answer everyday questions people may hold.[5]

The videos feature Grey narrating over animations, stock footage, and still photographs. While nearly all of his videos feature his voice, his face has never been shown in his videos, and he almost always has his face obscured when appearing in other people's videos;[6] he generally uses a stick figure with glasses to represent himself.[7] He has stated that the presentation style of his videos is influenced by that of Yahtzee Croshaw's Zero Punctuation series.[‡ 8][‡ 9]

Grey's video that debunks popular misconceptions has been featured on CBS,[8] as has his video about the history of the British royal family.[9] Two videos differentiate London and the City of London, while explaining the history and government of the latter.[10][11] Another two videos explaining copyright law and the Electoral College have been featured on Mashable.[4] The channel also explains the economic disadvantages of US one-cent coins in a video titled Death to Pennies.[12][13] Other videos, including How to Become Pope, have received media attention and have been used in instructional settings.[14][15] His video on the American debt limit received praise from economists.[16]

Grey's video Humans Need Not Apply was covered by Business Insider[17] and Huffington Post,[18] and his animated video of Nick Bostrom's "The Fable of the Dragon-Tyrant" was "unanimously praise[d]" by the Life Extension Advocacy Foundation.[19] In collaboration with fellow YouTuber Kurzgesagt, he produced a video titled "You Are Two" which discusses the right brain versus the left brain.[3][20] Popular Mechanics featured videos by Grey about airplane boarding and traffic congestion.[21][22]


The logo of Hello Internet

In January 2014, Grey launched the podcast Hello Internet along with co-host Brady Haran, another educational YouTuber and online content creator. The podcast peaked as the No. 1 iTunes podcast in United Kingdom, United States, Germany, Canada, and Australia in February 2014.[23] The Guardian included the podcast among its 50 best of 2016, naming episode 66 ("A Classic Episode") its episode of the year.[24] The paper described the podcast as having "in-depth debates and banter that is actually amusing."[24] Grey reported a podcast listenership of approximately "a quarter million" downloads per episode as of September 2015.[‡ 10]

The podcast features discussions pertaining to their lives as professional content creators for YouTube, as well as their interests and annoyances. Typical topics include technology etiquette; movie and TV show reviews; plane accidents; vexillology; futurology; and the differences between Grey's and Haran's personalities and lifestyles.[25] Their opinions and comments on feedback usually starts the next episode of the podcast. As a result of their conversations, Haran has been noted for reappropriating the term "freebooting", among other words, to refer to the unauthorized re-hosting of online media.[26] The podcast has been on hiatus since May 2020.[27]

On 3 June 2015, Grey launched his second podcast, Cortex, with co-host Myke Hurley of Relay FM.[28]


In 2013, Caitlin Dewey wrote that Grey is regarded as a "celebrity in the niche world of educational YouTube videos."[29] According to economist Joshua Gans, "while they may not be names in the halls of academia," YouTubers like Grey "have brought diverse explanations of mathematics, physics, political institutions, and history to millions on the Internet."[30]

Robert Krulwich of NPR writes that Grey has "a curious talent for truth telling; he can take a charming lie and, with even more charm, rip it apart. It is very, very hard, as any teacher will tell you, to unlearn something that makes you comfortable and makes you feel smart, but Mr. Grey has the knack."[31]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Hackett, Stephen (2 June 2015). "Introducing Relay FM's 2015 Summer Pilots". Relay FM. Archived from the original on 24 July 2015. Retrieved 13 August 2015.
  2. ^ "British Numbers confuse Americans – Numberphile". Archived from the original on 28 November 2019. Retrieved 26 November 2019 – via YouTube.
  3. ^ a b Romano, Aja (2 June 2016). "Let these chipper YouTube science vids fill you with existential terror". Vox. Retrieved 30 June 2022.
  4. ^ a b Allegra Tepper (24 July 2012). "These 10 Videos Turn Tough Topics into Child's Play, 7. C.G.P. Grey: Copyright: Forever Less One Day". Mashable. Archived from the original on 16 July 2018. Retrieved 9 August 2012.
  5. ^ a b Allocca, Kevin (25 January 2018). Videocracy: How YouTube Is Changing the World . . . with Double Rainbows, Singing Foxes, and Other Trends We Can't Stop Watching. Bloomsbury Publishing. ISBN 978-1-4088-8029-6.
  6. ^ Veritasium (28 June 2012). "Science YouTubers Unite! feat. ... CGP Grey". Archived from the original on 31 January 2014. Retrieved 26 October 2013 – via YouTube.
  7. ^ "Numbers confuse Americans – Numberphile". Numberphile (YouTube). 25 July 2013. Archived from the original on 17 September 2020. Retrieved 7 November 2013.
  8. ^ Johnson, Bailey (24 January 2012). "Eskimos do not have 100's of words for snow, and other myths debunked". CBS. Archived from the original on 4 November 2012. Retrieved 9 February 2023.
  9. ^ Savage, Lesley (17 July 2013). "How to become a British monarch and why it won't be you". CBS. Archived from the original on 18 October 2016. Retrieved 16 October 2016.
  10. ^ Shaw, Keith (23 July 2012). "Learn about the London inside London". IT World. Archived from the original on 25 July 2012. Retrieved 9 August 2012.
  11. ^ Gibbs, Sam (20 September 2012). "How to Become the Lord Mayor of the (Secret) City of London". Gizmodo UK. Archived from the original on 23 September 2012. Retrieved 21 September 2012.
  12. ^ Quirk, Mary Beth (13 January 2012). "The Case Against Pennies Might Make You Want To Send Yours Back To Uncle Sam For Something Useful". Consumerist. Archived from the original on 1 May 2012. Retrieved 9 August 2012.
  13. ^ Johnson, Bailey (30 November 2011). "Death to Pennies". The Feed Blog. CBS. Archived from the original on 29 October 2013. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  14. ^ Blake, Aaron (25 February 2013). "Why is the pope always so old? (Video)". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on 3 March 2013. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  15. ^ Jolivet, Lindsay (21 February 2013). "How to become pope instructional video goes viral". Yahoo! Canada. Archived from the original on 25 February 2013. Retrieved 4 March 2013.
  16. ^ Usborne, Simon (31 January 2013). "How to explain absolutely anything: Academics pick apart mysteries of". The Independent. Retrieved 30 June 2022.
  17. ^ Love, Dylan (13 August 2014). "Not Even Doctors And Lawyers Are Safe From Machines Taking Their Jobs". Business Insider. Archived from the original on 26 August 2014. Retrieved 23 August 2014.
  18. ^ "Why Robots Will Steal Your Job, In One Brutal 15 Minute Video". HuffPost. 18 August 2014. Archived from the original on 17 September 2017. Retrieved 3 October 2017.
  19. ^ Bagalà, Nicola (27 April 2018). "CGP Grey: The Fable of the Dragon-Tyrant -". Lifespan Extension Advocacy Foundation. Archived from the original on 26 March 2020. Retrieved 12 March 2020.
  20. ^ West, Brandon (13 December 2021). At the Edge of Existence: Liminality in Horror Cinema Since the 1970s. McFarland & Company. p. 192. ISBN 978-1-4766-4419-6.
  21. ^ Limer, Eric (31 August 2016). "The One Driving Technique That Could 'Solve' Traffic". Popular Mechanics. Retrieved 6 September 2022.
  22. ^ Limer, Eric (5 February 2019). "The Beautifully Efficient Airplane Boarding Method That Mere Humans Just Can't Pull Off". Popular Mechanics. Retrieved 6 September 2022.
  23. ^ "CGP Grey & Brady Haran – 'Hello Internet' American iTunes Chart Performance". Archived from the original on 14 July 2014. Retrieved 4 July 2014.
  24. ^ a b "The 50 best podcasts of 2016". The Guardian. 21 December 2016. ISSN 0261-3077. Archived from the original on 22 August 2017. Retrieved 21 December 2016.
  25. ^ "Top 3 Podcasts You Must Listen To in 2016". Intention Deficit. 31 December 2015. Archived from the original on 22 August 2017. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  26. ^ Oremus, Will (17 July 2015). "Facebook's Piracy Problem". Slate. The Slate Group LLC. Archived from the original on 18 July 2015. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
  27. ^ Brady Haran [u/JeffDujon] (18 May 2020). "The show has never had a schedule but we are having a HI-atus". Reddit. Archived from the original on 23 April 2023. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  28. ^ Dillet, Romain (18 August 2015). "How Relay FM Proves That Podcasts Aren't An Overnight Success". TechCrunch. Retrieved 20 July 2022.[permanent dead link]
  29. ^ Dewey, Caitlin (11 April 2013). "This fascinating video explains everything you never understood about the Vatican". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 30 June 2022.
  30. ^ Gans, Joshua (18 March 2016). The Disruption Dilemma. MIT Press. p. 55. ISBN 978-0-262-33384-9.
  31. ^ Krulwich, Robert (20 June 2014). "Wrong! Deconstructing 5 Famous History Stories". NPR. Retrieved 30 June 2022.

Primary sources

In the text these references are preceded by a double dagger (‡):

  1. ^ a b "About CGP Grey". YouTube.
  2. ^ a b "About CGPGrey2". YouTube.
  3. ^ Grey, C.G.P. (30 January 2012). "One Year & 100,000 Subscribers Later (Thank You!)". CGP Grey. Archived from the original on 1 January 2016. Retrieved 20 January 2013 – via YouTube.
  4. ^ Grey, C.G.P. (20 November 2013). "Q&A with Grey #2 (One Million Subscribers)". Archived from the original on 10 April 2019. Retrieved 15 September 2019 – via YouTube.
  5. ^ "Q&A With Grey for 500,000 Subscribers". Archived from the original on 21 June 2017. Retrieved 3 April 2017 – via YouTube.
  6. ^ "#26: Pick your Poison". Relay.FM. Archived from the original on 2 March 2017. Retrieved 26 March 2017.
  7. ^ "Q&A With Grey #3: Millennia of Human Attention". Archived from the original on 7 April 2017. Retrieved 26 March 2017 – via YouTube.
  8. ^ Haran, Brady; Grey, CGP (28 May 2014). "Nobody Owns the Facts". Hello Internet (Podcast). No. 13. Archived from the original on 15 June 2014. Retrieved 17 June 2014.
  9. ^ Grey, C. G. P.; Hurley, Myke (14 August 2015). "Cortex #10: Zero Artistic Skills". Cortex (Podcast). Relay FM. Archived from the original on 16 August 2015. Retrieved 16 August 2015.
  10. ^ Haran, Brady; Grey, CGP (29 September 2015). "Grumpy About Art". Hello Internet (Podcast). No. 48, 58:05. Archived from the original on 2 October 2015. Retrieved 30 September 2015.

External links[edit]