Online content producer and social media influencer Kavensky Fitness played one of his “Fake professor” pranks on Peter Kreysa’s business law and consumer affairs class the first day of the semester.
According to an email sent by University Police Department Chief Fernando M. Solorzano, Kavensky came into a classroom pretending to be the professor.
“I thought it was another professor,” Kreysa said. “It’s a team-taught class, so the classroom is assigned to two professors.”
In the video, Kreysa can be seen approaching Kavensky and introducing himself. However, it didn’t take long for Kreysa to realize the YouTuber wasn’t his tandem professor.
“I knew something was wrong when he started smoking,” Kreysa said.
Kreysa then prompted the students to evacuate the room as Kavensky continued his bit.
“The impersonator engaged in awkward and inappropriate behavior, including smoking a cigarette and drinking from a bottle that appeared to be an alcoholic beverage, all while an associate recorded it for social media,” Solorzano said.
A common feature on Kavensky’s YouTube channel, the “Fake Professor Prank” videos often boast several thousand views, with the one that occurred at Long Beach State collecting more than 62,000.
Comments on the video and on a reddit thread where the email from UPD was posted, range from laughs to confusion.
“The classroom is a place for student learning and the exchange of ideas,” Kreysa said. “When someone intrudes into that place, it interferes with students and faculty’s security.”
When the Daily Forty-Niner reached out to Kavensky, he was initially willing to sit down with reporters. He then requested the interaction be filmed for his channel, and ultimately declined to sit down with reporters because they would not meet with him off campus, something they felt was necessary for the safety of the team and integrity of the paper.
In the email, Solorzano said that the university is considering pursuing legal action against the prankster.
“This kind of behavior, regardless of the intent, is disruptive and disrespectful to both students and faculty members alike, and we are determining potential legal action,” Solorzano said.
The professor is filing a claim against YouTube and Kavensky’s channel on a claim of violation of privacy and false light. Kreysa is being represented by Marianne Reinhold, of Reich, Adell and Cvitan law firm.
In the letter sent to Google Inc., Reinhold prompts YouTube to remove the video from the website.
“It is Dr. Kreysa’s position that your posting of a video that violates the reasonable expectation of privacy of himself, other university employees, and his students and that casts both him and Ms. Williams in a false light is violative of the permissible terms of service of YouTube and that, as a publisher, YouTube/Google is exposed to liability for its exhibition,” Reinhold said.
Kreysa said that he’s been working with University Police and senior administrative members on campus on how to prevent future incidents like this.
“The most important thing is not getting the video removed, or suing him,” Kreysa said. “The most important thing is not having it happen again.”
The email also included tips for staff and students on how to react to situations like this one.
“If something doesn’t seem right, leave the classroom and call 911, be prepared to provide a description of the subject and a brief description of the incident,” Solorzano said. “Please do not simply take video of concerning events: call the police and if you have an emergency and do not feel you can call, you may text 911 and enter “CSULB”, the building name, room number, and ‘Help.’”