Internet celebrity Logan Paul wasn’t the only one feeling the heat when he uploaded a video to his 15 million subscribers of an apparent suicide victim’s body on January 1. Many were outraged at YouTube for failing to respond to the disturbing clip that was filmed in Japan’s Aokigahara forest, where dozens of people take their lives every year.
Now, more than a week later, YouTube has released an open letter condemning the 22-year-old Paul’s disturbing vlog.
“Many of you have been frustrated with our lack of communication recently. You’re right to be. You deserve to know what’s going on,” the statement began. “Like many others, we were upset by the video that was shared last week. Suicide is not a joke, not should it ever be a driving force for views.”
It added that there may be changes in YouTube policies: “We know that the actions of one creator can affect the entire community, so we’ll have more to share soon on steps we’re taking to ensure a video like this is never circulated again.”
For his part, Paul issued a second apology on January 2. “I’ve made a severe and continuous lapse in my judgement and I don’t expect to be forgiven, I’m simply here to apologize,” he said on his channel. “So what we came across that day in the woods was obviously unplanned and the reactions you saw on tape were raw, they were unfiltered. None of us knew how to react or how to feel.”
In the video — which has since been removed from YouTube — a member of Paul’s group reportedly was heard stating that he didn’t “feel good” to which Paul replied, “What, you never stand next to a dead guy?” Then he laughed.
If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.
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