By now many people have heard about Logan Paul satirizing suicide victims in Japan. There are many who are defending him, many who are falling for his apology video and many who are absolutely against him.
For those who have not seen the series of videos on his trip, you can view them on YouTube. He is seen harassing Japanese citizens and being quite disrespectful to them and their culture, all for the sake of comedy and views.
To have a platform and to use it for such behavior sets a horrible example for the younger viewers who watch videos. He sends the message that it’s acceptable to behave in a deplorable manner, which by society’s standards, it is not.
Paul recorded a video in Aokigahara Forest, commonly known as the “Suicide Forest,” displaying a body of a recent suicide victim then laughing and posting it online for young children, adolescents and whoever else to see. It’s understandable why many are upset.
It’s hard to believe someone would have the gall to bring a video camera to a popular location for suicide. One would think a 22-year-old adult would at least stop his buffoonery in a foreign country. However, he apparently could not discern the line he had crossed from obnoxious and offensive behavior into down-right inappropriate and disgusting.
He apologizes in his latest video for posting the video of the body online. How could one believe an apology from a person who has contradicting actions? He behaved poorly on his trip then brought a video camera to a location for suicide. He obviously had the intent to make a video, make jokes and post it, which is why he brought the camera in the first place.
He is only apologizing since he had an adverse reaction from the public and wants to keep some popularity, which also happens to be his source of money. According to Naibuzz, Paul should make at least $550,000 per year from views on his main channel and $7.3 million per year from views and ads on his vlogging channel.
What’s more, according to Elite Daily, Paul earned over $12,000 for his apology video. He had his apology monetized, which is about as insincere as a person could get. It makes one wonder if he will actually give the money to charity or keep it all for himself as he is taking time to reflect.
However, Paul is not the only culprit in this fiasco. The company in which the video was posted and allowed to be viewed without restriction or being taken down was none other than YouTube.
According to Buzzfeed News, Paul was the one who took down his video, not YouTube. YouTube should have removed the video before millions of children, adolescents and others could view it. If they didn’t remove it, they could have at least put a warning or age restriction on it, but they also did not do that.
This means any child could have watched this abominable video and not have realized the full effects of what they had just witnessed, thinking this behavior was acceptable.
Buzzfeed News mentions Paul only received a strike to his account after the public outcry. This only keeps Paul from accessing certain features on the site for about three months. For such an incident, this seems like a slap on the wrist.
Many people believe YouTube hasn’t done enough and over 190,000 people signed a petition on Change.org to remove him from his platform.
YouTube has been known for deleting users’ videos for reasons that seem ridiculous, but Paul’s video was never taken down. Other famous YouTubers like PewDiePie have posted videos with anti-Semitic comments and child exploitative material with no consequences from the company.
It makes one question YouTube’s goal for outgoing information in our society, and it doesn’t seem very friendly or positive. If they allow big producers in their company like Logan Paul and other questionable characters to produce graphic, disrespectful or racist content, then YouTube may lose popularity and be short-lived as a company.
It’s important to be able to express one’s self with the freedom of speech, but before you post something on social media, stop and think about how it may affect others.
Abigail Varnado is a 21-year-old English senior from Amite, Louisiana.