If you've been paying attention to the Special Counsel's Russia investigation, you'll remember this familiar refrain, "follow the money." For embattled YouTube personality Logan Paul, cutting off his money might just be the consequences he needs to stop his public relations disaster from imploding any further.
Buzzfeed reports that YouTube has shut off advertisements on Paul's videos via his channel. That amounts to a lot of money: Time estimates that Paul may earn as much as $1.2 million each month from video ads. This comes after Paul was dropped by Google Preferred, a branding liaison program. He was also cut from his role on Foursome, a YouTube Red original series.
"In response to Logan Paul’s recent pattern of behavior, we’ve temporarily suspended ads on his channels," wrote YouTube's Creators hub on Twitter.
YouTube also told Buzzfeed, in a statement, that "after careful consideration, we have decided to temporarily suspend ads on Logan Paul’s YouTube channels. This is not a decision we made lightly, however, we believe he has exhibited a pattern of behavior in his videos that makes his channel not only unsuitable for advertisers, but also potentially damaging to the broader creator community."
Paul is, of course, facing tremendous backlash for his decision to post a video featuring the dead body of a man who committed suicide in Japan's Aokigahara Forest, at the foot of Mt. Fuji. Paul attempted a rebrand as a suicide awareness advocate, to mixed reviews.
It's clear Paul's behavior has forced YouTube to rethink their guidelines. Ariel Bardin, YouTube’s vice president of product management, wrote in a blog post, without ever mentioning Paul by name, that “when one creator does something particularly blatant — like conducts a heinous prank where people are traumatized, promotes violence or hate toward a group, demonstrates cruelty, or sensationalizes the pain of others in an attempt to gain views or subscribers — it can cause lasting damage to the community, including viewers, creators and the outside world."
Bardin added, "That’s why it’s critical to ensure that the actions of a few don’t impact the 99.9 percent of you who use your channels to connect with your fans or build thriving businesses.” Punishing Paul is one way of showing YouTube is taking steps to protect its online community.