YouTube Removes Logan Paul From Preferred Program, Puts 'Thinning' Sequel on Hold

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Logan Paul

The video platform says it will not feature Paul in the fourth season of YouTube Red original comedy 'Foursome.'

YouTube has put its original projects with Logan Paul on hold following widespread criticism over a video he posted Dec. 31 that featured images of a suicide victim. 

The Google-owned streamer announced the action 11 days after the video was first published. (Paul removed it from his channel a day after he posted it after he faced a backlash over his treatment of mental health issues.)

This means that the fate of The Thinning: New World Order is in question. The film, a sequel to Paul's popular YouTube Red sci-fi thriller The Thinning, was announced in late November and was expected to drop on Red, YouTube's ad-free subscription streaming service, later this year. 

Paul also will not appear in the upcoming fourth season of Red comedy Foursome, in which he starred as the older brother of Jenn McAllister's Andie. Season three premiered Nov. 1. 

Further, YouTube has decided to remove Paul from its Google Preferred program, which gives brands the ability to sell ads on the top 5 percent of creators on the platform. That doesn't preclude him from running ads like many YouTube channels do, but likely means lower CPMs than those that Preferred creators see. 

"In light of recent events, we have decided to remove Logan Paul’s channels from Google Preferred," reads the full statement Wednesday from a YouTube spokeswoman. "Additionally, we will not feature Logan in season four of ‘Foursome’ and his new Originals are on hold."

Paul's video, filmed in Japan's Aokigahara Forest, showed the body of a man who had committed suicide, though the face was blurred. A number of well-known people, including Aaron Paul (no relation to Logan Paul), spoke out on Twitter against the video. 

Paul deleted the video and issued two apologies before announcing plans to suspend his vlog temporarily so he could "take time to reflect." 

At the time, YouTube released a statement indicating that Paul's video had violated its policies. "Our hearts go out to the family of the person featured in the video," the company said. "YouTube prohibits violent or gory content posted in a shocking, sensational or disrespectful manner. If a video is graphic, it can only remain on the site when supported by appropriate educational or documentary information, and in some cases it will be age-gated. We partner with safety groups such as the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline to provide educational resources that are incorporated in our YouTube Safety Center." 

YouTube also said that Paul's channel, which has 15 million subscribers, received a strike. Three strikes, received when violating a YouTube policy, within a three-month period will cause YouTube to terminate an account. 

But some of the YouTube community felt that the streamer hadn't done enough. The service released a new statement on Tuesday noting, "Many of you have been frustrated with our lack of communication recently. You're right to be. You deserve to know what's going on." 

The statement continued, "Like many others, we were upset by the video that was shared last week. Suicide is not a joke, nor should it ever be a driving force for views." 

The company then indicated that it would look at "further consequences" and would share more soon about "steps we're taking to ensure a video like this is never circulated again."