Logan Paul returned to YouTube on Wednesday, January 24, with his first post since facing widespread backlash over a since-deleted vlog showing the body of an apparent suicide victim in Japan.
Titled “Suicide: Be Here Tomorrow,” the new seven-minute video shows the internet personality, 22, speaking with suicide survivor Kevin Hines, Alo House Recovery Centers founder Bob Forrest and National Suicide Prevention Hotline director Dr. John Draper to educate himself on suicide, which takes the lives of about 800,000 people across the world each year.
“I know I’ve made mistakes. I know I’ve let people down. But what happens when you’re given an opportunity to help make a difference in the world?” Paul said in the video. “It’s time to learn from the past as I get better and grow as a human being. I’m here to have a hard conversation as those who are suffering can have easier ones.”
The Ohio native, who first gained fame with the videos he shared on the now-defunct app Vine, admitted to his 16 million YouTube subscribers that he never knew anyone who had died by suicide. “That was part of the problem was just my ignorance on the subject,” he explained. “While I’m not able to solve the problem by myself, I want to be part of the solution.”
Paul went on to list the five steps to help someone who is considering suicide: ask, listen, support, help them connect and check in on them. He then pledged to donate $1 million to “various suicide prevention organizations, with the first $250,000 going immediately to the National Suicide Prevention Hotline so they can increase their capacity to help those in need.”
As previously reported, the social media star came under fire after he uploaded a video on December 31 that showed the corpse of a man who appeared to have hung himself from a tree in Aokigahara, which is commonly referred to as Japan’s “suicide forest.” Paul deleted the video and apologized on both Twitter and YouTube, saying he didn’t “expect to be forgiven.” YouTube removed him from its Google Premium advertising service on January 10 amid the controversy.
If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.