Shane Dawson’s recent documentary on Jake Paul gave plenty of revelations about the life of the YouTube mega-star. Paul said he was devastated by the betrayal of his brother Logan Paul, he talked about his toxic relationship with Alissa Violet, and he pondered whether he’s an actual sociopath.
But another YouTuber said Paul’s biggest denial about his YouTube career is really a bunch of lies.
In a video released Sunday titled “The Lies of Jake Paul”—a takeoff of Dawson’s “The Mind of Jake Paul”—Nerd City said Paul was lying about the supposed ignorance of his child manipulation tactics and called him “greedy” and vain.
In the documentary finale, Dawson asked Paul about receiving criticism for supposedly manipulating his young fans into buying merchandise. That stemmed from a previous Nerd City video in which Paul was accused of using his platform primarily to convince children to buy his products. For really the only time in the entire eight-part documentary, Paul pushed back against Dawson’s assertions and said this:
“It’s fucking stupid people think that’s manipulative. I don’t see a problem with it at all. Just because my fans are younger, does that mean I’m manipulating them? I don’t think a kid would actually believe that, that [they’re] not cool if [they] don’t have that. A big part of my content is to make someone’s day. To me, that’s what the merchandise is about. It’s being a part of that community, wearing something that actually means something.
“I know I promote the shit out of my merch. For people to say I’m trying to manipulate younger kids, it’s ridiculous.”
Now, Nerd City has taken a more in-depth look at what the channel creators call Paul’s lies regarding his merch-selling tactics. Here are a couple of revelations.
‘The lies of Jake Paul’
Paul gave a speech at a New York conference in February in which part of the goal, as stated in a press release, was to show “how brands can extend their reach through partnerships with social media influencers.” Here’s the description of the panel on which Paul sat.
Said Nerd City: “And you were on the stage leading the panel because you’re an expert at getting kids to buy things.”
Nerd City said Paul fought back against that accusation was because so much of his social media empire is selling his merchandise and to concede on the theory that he’s using unsavory methods to move his products would hurt his business. Not only that, Nerd City said, but Paul understood that power years ago before most people did.
Paul’s response to Dawson “left only two possibilities,” Nerd City said. “One, you don’t understand how advertising works. Which would make you really dumb. And you’re not. Or two, you do understand how advertising works, and you’re lying. You’re lying.”
Nerd City spotlighted Paul’s Team 10 business. Though that social media incubator might be morphing into something else entirely, Nerd City found Team 10 squatting on dozens of domain names that it could use in the future. It also discovered that Paul’s marketing companies are making brand deals for Team 10 members with companies that include Coca-Cola, Amazon, and Disney. The company’s goal, in part, is to “market effectively in the teen space.”
Meanwhile, Paul told Dawson that the concept of Team 10, what it stood for, and what its future is was “super confusing.” In essence, Nerd City said Paul was playing dumb.
Nerd City pointed viewers to a lesser known Paul-owned YouTube channel called Jake Paul Biz that has 230,000 subscribers and is a “treasure trove” of him explaining his teen-influencing concepts. One video Nerd City found shows Paul explaining that he makes content centered around his merch and saying “content and products are the same thing, nowadays.”
In 2017, Paul began posting instructional videos on how to become a social media influencer. He called the program Edfluence, and though watching that content probably won’t make you a YouTube star, Nerd City said it was a “hard sell” and that Paul was using manipulation in that series as well. Said Nerd City, “He packs dozens of manipulative sales tactics into the pitch video.”
(Sadly, the manipulation didn’t work on me because I declined to pay $57 for the full Paul package after I already paid $7 to get part of the package. Well, maybe he manipulated me a little bit.)
Nerd City also talks about Greg Paul’s domain squatting and describes exactly how greedy Jake Paul can be. Here’s the entire video.