Dr. Phil was appalled by Logan Paul's "suicide forest" video, but isn't ready to call the 22-year-old YouTube star a bad person.
The daytime talk show host opened up to ET about the controversy, as well as how he believes instant sharing and social media has given young people access to an audience before they can handle it.
"Well, first off, let me say I thought that what went up on the video and what was shown was tasteless, it was atrocious. It was something that should not have been done," the 67-year-old TV personality exclaims. "But let's call timeout right here. This is a 22-year-old young man.... let's not judge this man's whole life, his whole body of work and everything that he's done over one bad decision."
"It was a terrible decision, it was a terrible thing to put on the internet. Kids see that. It's inexcusable to do that, but that doesn't mean he's a horrible person," he continues. "He's a young guy. I have two sons, so maybe I'm a little extra forgiving about this. He made a bad decision and then didn't know exactly how to respond to that. Was it wrong? Yes. Should he have done it? Absolutely not. Should he apologize for it? Yes, he's taken a stab at that. Let's not bury this young man over one bad decision."
Dr. Phil went on to observe how much has changed with regard to the internet since even when his show first aired.
"Think about this. I'm in my 16th season and when I started there was no YouTube. Of course, there was an internet, but the first text had not been sent, we didn't have Instagram. All of these things are new in this generation," he says. "So 'www' stands for world wide web, but I call it the wild wild web, because anything goes and there's not much regulation."
"That lack of monitoring or any kind of guideline or code lets some people get in over their head, particularly young people," he adds. "They have the knowledge to handle that technology, but not the wisdom and that's the problem. You have kids who know so much more about it than we do. They have the knowledge but not the wisdom. That's a big difference."
Oftentimes, guests' appearances on Dr. Phil's show find their way to internet (in)famy and become memefied -- such as with Danielle Bregoli aka "Cash me outside" girl. Dr. Phil opened up about how he and his staff attempt to make guests aware of this possibility.
"I think that when you vault people into the public eye, we do talk to them about it. And we talk to them about it before they ever come on the show," he says. "But it's not for everybody. There are a lot of people that we don't put on the show because we think it's not the forum for them. It's not the place for them to be, but we do talk to them about it and say, 'You need to think about this.'"
Dr. Phil airs daily. Check your local listings for tune-in.
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