Logan Paul, a Youtuber with over 15 million subscribers finds him self stuck in the hot seat after posting a video of a dead body hanging from a tree in the Japanese “Suicide Forest.”
22-year-old Paul made a vlog of him and his friends going to spend the night in the Aokigahara forest which has solid reputation for being haunted and a known destination for suicide victims. The video begins with Paul stating, “This definitely marks a moment in YouTube history.” He then continues by warning viewers that the following footage is graphic.
The video proceeds and Logan and his friends stumble upon a hanging body. They left the faced blurred, but the rest of the body is visible. They all react in shock and Logan shouts, “Yo, are you alive?” The camera pans over the body as he describes its condition. The group of friends do take a quick moment to acknowledge the seriousness of suicide. Throughout the whole video Logan Paul is laughing and receptivity cursing. In his apology posted the next day, he claims that was just his coping mechanism.
After getting loads of backlash from the internet, Paul makes another apology saying “I should have never posted the video, There are a lot of things I should have done differently but I didn’t and for that, from the bottom of my heart, I am sorry.” The video felt extremely rehearsed and disingenuous. Paul posted that video consensually. He filmed the video, spent hours editing, and posted it. He even made the hanging body the video’s thumbnail.
Many people on the internet were outraged by Logan Paul’s actions. James Charles, a teenage social media influencer, tweeted, “He doesn’t think before he speaks/acts in front of his very easily influenced young audience,” and then tweeted the number for the suicide hotline. Caitlin Doughty, a mortician and author tweeted “It is the purview of the privileged young to believe everything is for them, to be commented on by them. The young person who died was not for Paul- not their body, not their image, not their story.”
Perhaps due how the public reaction has affected him in such a negative way, Logan Paul will learn that everything is not for entertainment value, but that some things are sacred and deserve respect.