Logan Paul is an influencer, podcaster and professional wrestler who has once again found himself at the center of controversy. A three-part YouTube series by investigative journalist Steven Findeisen, known as Coffeezilla on YouTube, examines Paul’s recent CryptoZoo project, labeling the effort as a scam. As if things couldn’t get any weirder, less than a month later, a pig named Pearl that used to belong to Paul was found abandoned at an animal rescue, and Pearl has since stepped in.
A couple of stories that went viral on social media made Paul a topic of conversation on Twitter, TikTok and other social media platforms. This has resulted in some mixed discourse, with other influencers and creators vying on all sides. Paul took to social media and his podcast to respond.
Paul first promoted CryptoZoo on his podcast impulsive In August 2021. He said he was working on “his own NFT project” and called it “a really fun game that makes you money.” CryptoZoo is a blockchain “game” where players buy an in-game cryptocurrency called $Z00 to spend on digital eggs that hatch into animals. The eggs could also theoretically be bred, resulting in hybrids that were rare and therefore considered more valuable in monetary terms.
On December 16, Findeisen published the first part of his three-part series, “Investigating Logan Paul’s Biggest Scam,” which has garnered over 7.5 million views. In this video, Findeisen claims the project is a scam and interviews players who say they never hatched their eggs. In the description of the video, Findeisen writes:
“CryptoZoo was supposed to be a fun blockchain game that could make you money… but millions of dollars of investor money later, things are still broken. Coffeezilla investigates why. […] This video is an opinion and should in no way be construed as a statement of fact. Scams, bad business opportunities and fake gurus are subjective terms that mean different things to different people. I think anyone who promises $100K a month for a $2K down payment is a scam. Others would call it the grounds of Napoleon Hill.
Findeisen posted the second and third parts of the series on December 20 and 23 on the Coffeezilla YouTube channel. In these videos, Findeisen explores other members of the CryptoZoo team, including lead developer Eddie Ibanez, other developers, and crypto influencers like Jake. king of crypto. (No relation to Jake Paul, Logan Paul’s influencer brother and fellow podcaster.)
Logan Paul posted a response video to Coffeezilla on January 4th, which has since been deleted, but went viral as other YouTubers reposted it. In that video, Paul said he didn’t make any money from CryptoZoo, accused Findeisen of using his name for money and views, and threatened to sue Findeisen. He also discussed Coffeezilla’s series of videos per episode impulsive podcast.
Saturday, Findeisen tweeted She said Paul called her and “deleted two replies” and also “denied threats of a lawsuit.” Findeisen also shared a screenshot from the CryptoZoo Discord group that depicts Paul saying that he will “take responsibility, apologize, and come up with a plan in the near future.” CryptoZoo’s website says it is currently “making improvements to the ecosystem’s core infrastructure.” (The Polygon has contacted Logan Paul and Stephen Findeisen and will update the story upon response.)
Logan’s response: his response was “out of sync with mysticism and the real issue”
He will “be responsible, apologize and come up with a plan.” pic.twitter.com/nI2tyQd28i
— Coffeezilla (@coffeebreak_YT) January 7, 2023
Just as things began to calm down, the controversy surrounding Paul flared up again on January 10, but for a completely different reason. Animal rescue Gentle Barn posted a TikTok telling the story of a pig named Pearl, who was described as being found abandoned in a field next to another dead pig. Fans recognized Pearl from her YouTube videos as Paul’s pet pig, and the animal sanctuary’s TikTok went viral on social media.
According to TikTok, Gentle Barn treated Pearl for a life-threatening uterine infection and torn ears. “From what we’ve been told, it’s believed to have been originally purchased by an influencer from a breeder,” the TikTok video’s description reads.
He continues: “People often buy ‘mini pigs’ or ‘teacup pigs’ for online influence, believing they will stay small. When they inevitably grow too big and have many unexpected needs, they are unfortunately discarded. While we don’t know all that she went through in the past, we do know that her life is now full of friends, nutritious food, high quality care and lots of love.” Polygon reached out to Gentle Barn for comment and did not receive a response.
Pearl was found alone in a field next to another dead pig. She came to us with torn ears and a potentially life-threatening infection in her uterus that had healed. She has been traumatized more than we can clearly imagine, but she is now safe with us at The Gentle Barn. From what we’re told, it’s believed to have originally been purchased from a breeder by an influencer. People often buy “mini pigs” or “teacup pigs” for online influence, believing they will stay small. When they inevitably grow too big and have many unexpected needs, they are unfortunately discarded. While we don’t know everything she’s been through in the past, we do know her life is now full of friends, nutritious food, high quality care, and lots of love. #pigrescue #animalrescue #abandonedanimals #pigsoftikt #farmanimalrescue #thecentlebarn
♬ Where is my mind? – Piano Version – Blue Notes
Polygon also reached out to Logan Paul for comment on Pearl and received the following response:
Logan moved to Puerto Rico and couldn’t take Pearl with him. He dutifully returned her to an amazing horse farm where she was well looked after.
Logan found out yesterday that the owner of the horse farm had moved and couldn’t keep Pearl. Apparently they had returned it to their neighbors and it was the neighbor who contacted the Gentle Barn to accept the Pearl.
Logan was unaware and shocked to learn that Pearl had once again been returned to a person and place she did not know.
When this information surfaced online, Logan immediately reached out to Gentle Barn. She has offered to help fundraise and hopes to reunite with Pearl if given the opportunity by the rescue organization.
Logan is quite disappointed to learn of Pearl’s condition and is truly grateful to the Gentle Barn.
Many fans on the Internet are skeptical of Paul’s responses to these two controversies. How they’ll resolve it remains to be seen, but it’s a reminder that despite Paul’s continued success and massive following, his efforts to rehabilitate his image often lead to far more ridiculous results.