By Nathan Vicar
(AMP) — A popular YouTube personality says he intended for a video showing the body of an apparent suicide victim in Japan to raise awareness of suicide and suicide prevention.
The video, which was uploaded on Sunday, showed 22-year-old Logan Paul and his friends at a place known as the “suicide forest” due to the high number of suicides that take place there, according to The New York Times.
In the now-deleted clip, Paul and the group come upon what appears to be a suicide victim hanging from a tree. They then react to what they see.
Critics blasted the video for being tasteless and offensive.
Paul also apologized, saying his original intent was to raise awareness for suicide and suicide prevention. He pledged not to do something similar again.
“I did it because I thought I could make a positive ripple on the internet, not cause a monsoon of negativity. That’s never the intention. I intended to raise awareness for suicide and suicide prevention and while I thought ‘if this video saves just ONE life, it’ll be worth it,’ I was misguided by shock and awe,” Paul wrote.
Paul rose to fame on YouTube with his viral Vine videos. He’s gained millions of followers on social media, worked on TV projects and has his own merchandise.
Paul has 15 million subscribers on YouTube. Each one of his daily videos routinely gets more than 5 million views.