BY PAIGE CRAWFORD
YouTube star, Logan Paul, who outraged the internet after posting a disturbing video of a suicide victim, believes that his career should not be over due to the stunt. “Everyone deserves a second chance, bro,” Paul spoke to a TMZ reporter. The actions made by Paul have proved to the world his immaturity and that he does not deserve the large platform that he has.
With this notorious video, Paul started possibly one of the most talked about Youtube controversies in several years. The footage, which was posted on his vlog channel with over fifteen million subscribers, showed him and friends laughing at a dead body hanging in “Suicide Forest” in Aokigahara, Japan. Many viewers disapproved of this video because of the insensitivity Paul showed towards a serious subject. This footage can only be seen as heartless, especially since most of his audience are young, impressionable children. Paul released a apology video saying that his intentions were to raise suicide awareness, which led people to question why he was laughing in the video. If his intentions were to raise awareness, he would have been more convincing and refrain from laughing and showing the body of the victim. Coverage of these triggering events can put vulnerable viewers at a risk for making the same actions.
Many youtubers and public figures were upset with the video as well and took to social media to write about it. Tyler Posey, Teen Wolf actor, told his fans that Paul should not be defended for his actions just because he is famous. Posey said, “It’s nice to stand by somebody’s side that you admire and look up to, but you can’t stand by our side through everything.” Youtube as a whole has also been criticized greatly for not immediately taking the photo down. Smaller Youtubers have more strict rules and policies against these videos, while Paul gets special treatment because of the money he brings in. Paul’s video was taken down by a member of his team, not Youtube, and the company waited until the end of the controversy to finally cut ties with him. The policies for the site have now been made much stricter, but Paul’ channel has still not been taken down.
With a majority of young subscribers, Paul is expected to set an example for many children throughout the world. The most impressionable age is during the younger ages, where viewers decisions can be largely influenced by others actions. If these children are seeing their role model posting a video about a suicide, while joking about the victim, it is very likely that their behavior and actions can mirror his. Young viewers who are triggered easily by self harm and suicide could become more susceptible to committing the act as well. The possibility of this is even larger after these types of viewers hear the jokes he made and way he acted around the victim. The example being set by him is showing kids that behavior like this is acceptable. The lapse of judgement made by Paul to post this disturbing video shows his level of immaturity, and why he should not be a role model for young people.
After the backlash Paul’s horrifying video received, his career has seemingly ended. The suicide video presented by Paul has showed the world what he truly is, an immature and insensitive teenager. In the future, hopefully people will choose role models more carefully and call out celebrities on their wrong-doing.