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YouTube star Logan Paul came under fire for posting a video of an apparent suicide victim in Japan’s “suicide forest,” Aokigahara.
USA TODAY

YouTube star Logan Paul apologized for posting a video showing an apparent suicide victim in Japan’s “suicide forest,” drawing condemnation for appearing to use the death for comic purposes.   

The video, entitled “We saw a dead body in the Japanese Suicide Forest,” featured Paul and several friends arriving to camp at the forest, officially known as Aokigahara. After the group ventured off the trail, they happen upon an apparent suicide victim hanging from a tree. Paul and company then decide to venture closer to the body, filming their reactions along the way. The video shows several close-ups of the victim’s body, though the victim’s face is blurred. 

Paul warns viewers that the video is graphic and remarks that he thinks it is “a moment in YouTube historybecause I’m pretty sure this has never hopefully happened to anyone on YouTube ever.”  He says suicide is “not the answer” before jokingly replying to an off-camera, apparently distraught friend saying “what, you’ve never seen a dead guy before?”   

The video was pulled from Paul’s official YouTube channel but was re-uploaded by other users on the service. Paul became a trending topic on Twitter late Monday night, with celebrities and other YouTubers joining others on the Internet criticizing him for even posting the video that jokes about suicide.

It’s the latest instance that Google-owned YouTube has taken heat for user-generated content that’s popular with kids — and frequently makes its amateur creators money — but that has disturbing or adult themes. YouTube has vowed to crack down on videos that exploit children and to impose tighter filters for content that requires age restrictions. 

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In a statement Tuesday, YouTube said the video violated its Community Guideline policies and shared condolences to the…