Logan Paul recently released a video, now deleted, of his visit to Japan’s Aokigahara Forest, commonly known as Suicide Forest. In the video, he finds the body of a suicide victim. Apparently, the video was supposed to raise awareness about mental health. Many didn’t see it as so. He received many criticisms for exploiting a dead body for views; even more arose when he chose to monetize his apology video.
When my brother found my sister’s body, he screamed with horror & confusion & grief & tried to save her. That body was a person someone loved.
You do not walk into a suicide forest with a camera and claim mental health awareness.
— Anna Akana (@AnnaAkana) January 2, 2018
i’m truly sickened by this logan paul situation. i lost my brother to suicide… my brother took his own life by hanging himself… how insensitive and sick can you be to film someone in that state 😔
— mommy (@CorinnaKopf) January 2, 2018
Just remember this. Before all the extended community outrage against Logan Paul’s “we found a dead body” video, there was a seemingly uncontested 550-600,000 likes on it.
His core audience doesn’t give a fuuuuuuck. Unless youtube does something, this doesn’t hurt him.
— Philip DeFranco (@PhillyD) January 2, 2018
One of the many critics was Youtuber Nathan Zed, who ended up releasing a video in reaction to the controversy. In the video, Zed is able to actually raise awareness about mental health. He asks Logan to do better. He is able to state exactly what is so horrible about Logan Paul’s video and provides his viewers with a way to help. Unlike Logan Paul’s video, Zed doesn’t show any explicit images or cursing, but he is still flagged and an age restriction is placed on the video, removed only after 14 hours. At the same time, Logan Paul didn’t get any backlash from Youtube, even though he had the victim’s body displayed in the video thumbnail.
wow my video just got age restricted with no cursing or showing a body,
— nathan zed 🥀 (@NathanZed) January 4, 2018
Youtube later responded with an apology to Zed on twitter:
Appreciate you tagging us, this was an error on our side and the age-restriction has been removed from your video. You can also appeal age-restrictions directly from your Video Manager, thanks!
— Team YouTube (@TeamYouTube) January 4, 2018
This isn’t the first time that there has been controversy over Youtube’s restriction algorithm. Many have called Youtube out for restricting LGBT+ content. Now they’ve age-restricted Zed’s video raising awareness about mental health while they let Logan Paul’s video reach the trending page before it was caught. This has not gone unnoticed by the internet.
I am a queer youtuber. My LGBT sex Ed videos are all demonetized. I don't talk about suicide bc my dad died of it when I was ten. All my love to those who are having a hard time this week.
If you are contemplating suicide call The Trevor Project: 1-866-488-7386
— Stevie 🔮 (@stevieboebi) January 3, 2018
Not trying to make this about me but it's fucked that educational videos about my transition from female to male are age restricted (meaning people under 18 don't have access) meanwhile @LoganPaul exploits someone's suicide and that gets promoted on @YouTube trending page
— Ty Turner 🤙🏼 (@partar400) January 2, 2018
Youtube provides a platform for millions of people that they can rely on for help and when their restriction algorithm makes major mistakes like the ones mentioned, it prevents viewers from finding the support and assistance they can’t find anywhere else. Meanwhile, by failing to restrict disturbing videos like Logan Paul’s, they are exposing children to images and subjects that will traumatize them.
Here are the links provided in Zed’s video for those interested:
charities that work with JAPANESE communities internationally:
- TELLJP: http://telljp.com/help/donate/
- The Center for Japanese Mental Health: http://www.cjmh.org/about-us/
- Buddy Project: http://www.buddy-project.org/
- Crisis TEXT Line (24/7 and confidential): text START to 741-741
- Depression Hotline: 1-630-482-9696
- Suicide Hotline: 1-800-784-8433
- Trevor Lifeline: 866-488-7386 (for LGBTQ+)
- Helpline 1: Counseling: 03 5774 0992
- Helpline 2: Face to Face: 03 3498 0231
- Depression Alliance: 0845 123 23 20
Full list of hotlines for all countries: http://www.buddy-project.org/hotlines/
great mini Documentary on Aokigahara (the forest): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4FDSd…