The Fall of the Pauls


Faith Lingaraj and Greysen Simmons

YouTubers, and brothers, Jake and Logan Paul, have come to the end of their careers, and it was nothing like anyone had expected. Due to their recent recklessness on the internet and the abuse of their fame, it is a good day for people to say that the two are finally being put to a stop.


Jake Paul, currently 21, grew his career on Vine in the year 2013, ending up with 5.3 million followers and 2 billion plays on the app. He then moved on to acting on television, starring in a lead role on Disney Channel’s original series Bizaardvark, formed in 2015, portraying internet star Dirk Mann.


Two years later, in July of 2017, Paul announced that he would be leaving the series. This was due to his neighbors complaining about the noise coming from his pranks, parties, fire hazards, and large crowds of fans flooding around in their neighborhood due to him publicly releasing his home address on the internet.


Jake Paul was fired by Disney, who were weaning him off the show during July of 2017 as a result of the controversy. A lawsuit for public nuisance was filed on Jake by his neighbors prior to him getting fired, leading to the demise of his public relations status. Seemed like Disney Channel took the right direction by doing this, as they do not want any bad influences to be featured on their network.


The older brother in the relationship, Logan Paul, currently 22, rose to fame on Vine much like his year-younger brother. Following his rise to fame, Logan was featured as a special guest on several television shows, including: Law & Order: Special Victims Unit; Freeform’s Stitchers; and starring role on YouTube Red original film, alongside Disney Channel actress Peyton List, The Thinning.


But Logan had a demise far more severe than that of his brother. During a trip to Japan with his friends, he took the liberty to start a vlog in Aokigahara– better known as the Sea of Trees or the Japanese Suicide Forest. The things he showed to his young viewers within the forest had many parents shocked, repulsed, and enraged. While narrating and filming, Logan approached the body of a man who had hanged himself from a tree. Following editing the video, and upon posting it to YouTube, he used for his video’s thumbnail a photograph he had taken of the hanging dead body, but blurred out the face. The media swarmed all over the controversy as Logan was quick to take down the video.


Morgan Walker, a senior at Oakdale, believes that Logan had purpose and thought put into what he did in Aokigahara, claiming, “[The team] took the time to edit and upload it and put advertisements on the video”, defending the idea that this video was meant to be so and was created with some intention of suicide awareness.


Sophomore Colby Bragg commented, believing, “the Paul brothers are being put through unfair scrutiny”, due to their social profiles being exposed to modern platforms.


Logan Paul’s choice was definitely a leap-before-you-think situation, as he ruined his entire image because of the video and its contents. The consequences gave YouTube no choice but to end all their collaborations with him. Despite adding videos and posting all over social media saying how sorry he was, and how he was going to take the time to step back, and take time to reflect, people have still been raging. The real question is if he should be forgiven for what he did. That is a question for his viewers to answer individually.


There is no place for redemption for the two brothers. “If [the Paul brothers] tried to defend themselves, they would only make each other’s situations worse”, Walker adds.


Bragg also thinks they have dug themselves a deep hole: “Even with the community they built to raise awareness (about suicide) has started to turn on Logan for the other disrespectful things he did in Japan.”


The Paul brothers, who have grown immensely on the internet, had two choices: whether they want to take their fame to the next level by spreading their positive influence or to tear themselves down by giving themselves a negative image. It may already be too late for their millions of fans, current and former, to forgive them and see beyond their reckless behaviors. But perhaps the brothers may never see past it all for themselves.