Influencer Jake Paul slammed for 'hijacking' Black Lives Matter protests to film YouTube videos

Joanna Taylor
Monday 01 June 2020 07:15
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( Rich Fury / Getty Images )

People are slamming influencer Jake Paul for "hijacking" the Black Lives Matter movement to film content for his YouTube channel.

Paul, whose vlogs have attracted more than 20 million subscribers, was filmed amid protesters on the streets of Scottsdale, Arizona.

In some of the videos, filmed and posted to Instagram by Paul's friend and collaborator Andrew Blue, Paul can be seen watching people loot and destroy property. When a group of people break into a Sephora, Blue can be heard saying from behind the camera "get me a free cologne".

Paul has denied that he or anyone in his group was looting or vandalising, claiming "we were strictly documenting, not engaging".

He also claimed to have been tear-gassed and moved along by police whilst trying to film.

But not everyone was convinced.

Blue's videos depict Paul standing outside a P. F. Chang's restaurant as it is broken into, before being handed a bottle of clear liquid.

Twelve people were arrested for looting the shopping mall in Arizona.

Some people questioned why Paul filmed in the affluent city of Scottsdale, while the majority of protesters in Arizona were gathered in downtown Phoenix.

Others accused Paul of "hijacking" the protests for his own benefit.

Jake and his brother Logan are two of YouTube's most controversial creators.

Logan Paul sparked outrage in January 2018 after he uploaded a video of himself discovering a corpse in Japan's 'suicide forest' Aoikighara.

The brothers are worth an estimated $19m each.

People are accusing Paul of 'abusing' his privilege and demanding that he donate to the cause he is mining content from.

The Black Lives Matters protests in response to the death of George Floyd are not a novelty to be posted for Internet clout.

That Jake Paul would do so is shocking, but not surprising.

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