YouTube Star Popular With Kids Apologizes for Posting Video of a Dead Body

logan paul apology video
LoganPaul/Twitter

Twenty-two-year-old Logan Paul -- along with his brother Jake -- is extremely well-known on the Internet for making "family friendly" videos that cater to kids and adults alike. But recently, the YouTuber came under fire for posting a graphic segment showing an actual dead body he saw while on a trip to the Japanese "suicide forest." The video traumatized fans, angered parents, and shocked the Internet community. Now, Paul is apologizing for his actions.

  • In the video, Paul and a few friends visit Aokigahara in Japan.

    CNN

    Aokigahara, also commonly referred to as the "suicide forest," is known as a place where many people go specifically to commit suicide. While visiting Aokigahara, Paul -- along with a few other people -- stumbled upon the dead body of a man who had seemingly taken his own life. The person filming the video panned to the body multiple times, and while the man's face was blurred during editing, the rest of the body could be seen clearly. 

    After finding the body, Paul asked someone to call the police two times. At one point, he burst into laughter before saying, "It was gonna be a joke. This was all a joke. Why did it become so real?" 

    While the video has since been deleted, Paul certainly hasn't been forgiven. 

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  • Shortly after the incident, Paul took to Twitter to make an apology.

    "I did it because I thought I could make a positive ripple on the internet, not cause a monsoon of negativity," Paul said. "I intended to raise awareness for suicide and suicide prevention, and while I thought, 'If this video saves just ONE life, it'll be worth it,' I was misguided by shock and awe, as portrayed in the video."

    More from CafeMom: Parents Sue School After 12-Year-Old Daughter Commits Suicide Over Bullying

    While the vlog under fire -- titled "We found a dead body in the Japanese Suicide Forest" -- has since been deleted from YouTube, the backlash is still coming for the seemingly remorseful Internet star. Many fans viewed his apology as tone-deaf because of the way he minimized the incident and refused to truly admit or understand that what he did was wrong. To many, Paul's apology only served as a tool for him to defend himself rather than acknowledge the pain he had caused. "Even your apology is all about you," said one Twitter user.

  • As a follow-up, Paul posted an apology video that many are viewing as more sincere.

    "I've made a severe and continuous lapse in my judgment," Paul said. "I don't expect to be forgiven, I'm simply here to apologize." 

    Paul added that the reactions from those in the video -- which have been criticised as making light of the apparent suicide that took place -- were "raw" and "unfiltered." "None of us knew how to react or how to feel. I should have never posted the video. I should have put the cameras down and stopped recording what we were going through," said Paul. 

    The YouTuber apologized to anyone who had been forced to bear witness to the traumatic content of the video and asked his fans not to defend his actions. "I'm ashamed of myself. I'm disappointed in myself and I promise to be better. I will be better. Thank you."

  • While many have accepted his apology, others are still reeling from the trauma it caused.

    One mom in the UK says her son has been "fixated" on suicide since his father killed himself last year. The 13-year-old boy stumbled upon Paul's video and was traumatized even further. 

    In an open letter to Paul, the mother wrote, "I am worried he will regain his fixation with the concept of suicide, especially as he has seen a popular figure consider it to be a joke." The woman shared that she was afraid impressionable kids would see Paul making a joke out of suicide and use the video as a cue to further hurt those who have been affected by it. "Suicide is like an atomic blast in any family. It isn't 'clean' like dying from an accident or from illness. It is shrouded in taboo, confusion, guilt."

    "Logan Paul should meet with families who have experienced suicide if he wants to make amends," she wrote. "Humbly bowing out of the limelight would also be a step towards him growing up and taking life seriously."

  • Many celebrities even weighed in on the scandal.

    Chrissy Teigen took it upon herself to attempt to get people to understand that the backlash from fans would "ruin their lives and end their careers." She encouraged people to "personally make a choice to stop watching, and move on." 

  • Others, like actor Aaron Paul, were much more passionate about the YouTuber deserving backlash.

    "You disgust me," he wrote. "I can't believe that so many young people look up to you." 

  • The vast majority called him out for making light of suicide awareness.

    More from CafeMom: Mom Says Teacher Promoting '13 Reasons Why' Made Son Suicidal

    "You're not raising awareness," said Game of Thrones star Sophie Turner. "You're mocking. I can't believe how self-praising your 'apology' is." 

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