YouTube star Logan Paul, who caused an international controversy last week when he made a film inside Aokigahara, known as Japan’s “suicide forest,” has been removed from the lucrative Google Preferred system, while all of his original YouTube Red deals are now on hold.
On January 9, YouTube released a statement acknowledging the outcry, and promising that steps would be taken:
It’s taken us a long time to respond, but we’ve been listening to everything you’ve been saying. 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.
— YouTube (@YouTube) January 9, 2018
Those steps have now been disclosed. First up, Paul has been removed from Google Preferred, a lucrative pipeline that “offers brand advertisers access to the most popular YouTube channels.”
An upcoming YouTube Red movie project that Paul was due to star in, The Thinning: New World Order, has been put on hold. He has also been cut from Foursome, a YouTube Red comedy series.
Paul’s Aokigahara video featured the YouTube star encountering a body inside the forest, which he filmed and uploaded to his channel along with lines like:
This is not clickbait. This is the most real vlog I’ve ever posted to this channel. I think this definitely marks a moment in YouTube history because I’m pretty sure this has never hopefully happened to anyone on YouTube ever. Now with that said: buckle the fuck up, because you’re never gonna see a video like this again!
The video caused an international uproar, and led to a weak apology video in which Paul did little to appear he had understood why he had upset so many people by making light of such a serious and sensitive subject.
Update: – Headline edited to remove the term “ad deal” and better describe the nature of Google Preferred. The body of the post has also been edited to reflect this.