In a surprising and yet, somehow, not that surprising turn of events, Logan Paul’s subscriber count experienced a huge leap following his widely condemned “suicide forest” vlog.
The 22-year-old has sparked a huge debate on YouTube culture after he posted a video showing the body of a man who had taken his own life in the Aokigahara forest, referred to as the Japanese suicide forest. Logan removed the video after a day but his name began trending as people slammed him for the distasteful and upsetting video, including Aaron Paul, who told the vlogger to ‘rot in hell’.
Paul uploaded the video on Dec. 31 showing a man who had recently hung himself with the title “We found a dead body in the Japanese Suicide Forest…”. In the video, he films close-ups of the man’s body and hands. About 48 hours after posting the video Paul removed it and issued his first apology in which he included emoji and a hashtag.
Top stars in the YouTube community condemned Paul’s behavior. However, in terms of subscribers, the scandal has actually benefited Logan. While his Logan Paul Vlogs channel usually attracts between 45,000 and 60,000 new subscribers each day, his subscriber count jumped on 3 January, the day after the scandal surrounding the video erupted.
On the day the video went mainstream Logan gained just 17,111 new subscribers, according to data site Vid Stats X, the following day, 81,114 people signed up to follow his channel. Logan now has well over 15 million subscribers on his channel. While Logan now has almost 100,000 new subscribers to his channel, they may have to wait a while to see anything from him, as he announced that he would be taking a break from vlogging “to reflect” on the situation also on video.
What is highly ironic is that his apology video has also attracted way more views than usual. While his daily vlogs average at 6 million views, his apology posted two days ago entitled ‘So Sorry’ has racked up 28 million views.
The Logan Paul controversy has opened up a wider debate on YouTube guidelines and what is acceptable from vloggers. YouTube said:
“Our hearts go out to the family of the person featured in the video. YouTube prohibits violent or gory content posted in a shocking, sensational or disrespectful manner. If a video is graphic, it can only remain on the site when supported by appropriate educational or documentary information and in some cases, it will be age-gated. ‘We partner with safety groups such as the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline to provide educational resources that are incorporated into our YouTube Safety Center.”