Before Logan Paul came to the stage at a flat-earther conference to support a crushing conspiracy theory, he told the audience that he felt grateful that day. "I would like to give a special call to my friend Mike to be a catalyst for all this," said Paul. "I love you. I love you. He is one of my best friends."
While many spectators believed that the appearance was a stunt and the Flat Earth Society apparently disowned Paul's involvement in the event, Paul's love for Mike, apparently encouraged Mike, aka Mike Majlak, a self-proclaimed "social lubricator", has become a fixture in the Logan Paul universe ̵
Your relationship dates back to 2014 when Paul was still in social media's comparative good gifts. An introduction to Paul for calculated reasons: Majlak then worked as Marketing Manager at LoveSac, a furniture company that wanted to raise awareness of his big prayer chairs. Majlak saw an opportunity on platforms like Vine where influencers like Logan Paul racked up millions of views from loyal fans. Using Paul's love for physical stunts, the two worked together on videos where, for example, The YouTuber used a snake shot for the lob LoveSacs on the motocross legend Travis Pastrana. The collaboration was so successful that on a campaign alone, Majlak claims that Paul helped him sell 2.5 million LoveSacs in a single day.
"We did a couple of brands, [and] before you knew we were very good friends," Majlak said in a podcast interview earlier this year. From the beginning it seems that Logan Paul's recklessness has been a decisive feature of their friendship. In the same podcast, Majlak says that Paul once dropped an invaluable painting that almost cost Majlak's job. But these are the kind of antics that apparently brought the two together – and perhaps Paul gave the confidence to bring Majlak officially into the business after he filmed the body of an apparent suicide victim in Japan's Aokigahara forest. Here was someone with a head on their shoulders, successful in their own right, but still fun enough to appreciate Paul's tendency to absurd. Perhaps he could put Paul on the right path?
Following the backbone of suicide forest in January, the future of Paul's career was suddenly in the air. Trademarks canceled advertising deal with him. His YouTube Premium Advertising Agreement was recalled. The name Logan Paul became synonymous with insensitivity, as far as the Internet was concerned with. One month after the controversy, Paul was back on YouTube, but this time his vlogs had a new reviving cast member.
"I've been a bad egg lately," Paul begins. "You know, you've seen the news. I've made some dreadful decisions." Team Maverick decided to include, essentially a babysitter. Someone who is still a child and whom I respect but also kind of has a brain and that Mike. Every time I go to do something, I should not – because I can not trust myself anymore – I'm working on it, right? But Mike will make sure no bad things happen. "
Han continues to say that Majlak's job was to stop Paul from making irresponsible choices on YouTube, a role that ends up being a gag in early 2018 videos. While apparently most of his responsibility goes offscreen before ] a video has been uploaded, Majlak sometimes makes jokes about what team game allows Paul to upload to the platform.
While "YouTuber" is still quite young as a professional career, it is becoming increasingly v good to hire teams that support content creation. For example, Extra Credits, an educational YouTube channel with 1.7 million subscribers, has an accountant who doubles as a lawyer, community manager, communications director and director of business development. Many medium-sized YouTube channels employ layers to help them investigate, edit or shoot recordings, depending on the channel's needs. Even channels that are largely the work of a single personality can still need the help of external forces. Boundary Break, a YouTube channel that investigates what's hidden outside the camera in video games, still has contributors to help with things like animation.
These are support networks with obvious parallels in traditional entertainment, where large stars can employ entourages, including everything from hairdresser to cook to lawyer. But in the YouTube world, dealing with a recent phenomenon for influencers. So many of the controversies born on the platform, from anti-semitic stunts to unfulfilled event fiascos, seem to have a common denominator: lack of experience and supervision. YouTube has Terms of Service and a generally misunderstood algorithm that determines what content makes the most of platforms, but most of the time, the video company prefers a handsfree access for its creators. Being a YouTuber is like living in a wildlife of outrageous content.
During their early vlog performances, Paul plays up Majlak's supervisory role, at one point himself patting himself on the back for not doing something brash and irrational in front of Majlak, like kicking a ball inside a store. "There is something an immature person would do," says Paul.
More recently, after the YouTube documentary Shane Dawson launched a series on Logan's younger brother Jake Paul, Majlak can be seen in the background of a defensive video where Jake rejects speculation about his mental health. While Majlak almost does not say anything in the recording, he leaves the impression that he is there to make sure that Jake does not say anything that may cause him trouble, especially considering the difficult nature of the video. Logan claims that he is not a sociopathic, but has sociopathic trends .
For people who have not seen the introduction videos, it's easy to confuse Majlak for just another of Logan Paul's friends, someone who's mainly around to deliver comic support and merchandise plugs. If Logan Paul is driving over a car, Majlak can be in the passenger seat. If Logan Paul decides to prank his brother with a cooler full of rotten food, Majlak responds and helps him secure the duct tape package. While Majlak's original role apparently was the one who said "no" to Logan Paul, the view is condemned, he seems to have become a yes-man over time. During a video uploaded in March, both Paul and Majlak encourage a BMX cyclist to cut Paul's thanks, even though Paul's boss leads from a distance: "This can not happen." "He signed the apostasy," replies Paul.  While neither Paul's team nor Majlak responded to The Verge 's requests for comments, it may be that his role in the Maverick House changed over time. During an early vlog on his channel, Majlak briefly touches an action plan that Logan Paul prepared before returning to YouTube. It is unclear whether Majlak played an advisory role. This month, Majlak moved into Paul's home, as YouTuber celebrated by planting a real alligator in Majlak's room.
Majlak is also a fellow in Paul's new podcast, which includes a recent episode where he says he helps Logan to make money. The podcast, coupled with Paul's boxing test this year, makes it seem as if he tries to diversify revenue streams in a long-format format where it's harder to have stunts misfire. Nevertheless, Majlak proposes that he still do his part to keep Paul on track and focus, inter alia by making sure he is not distracted by dating.
"I'm one of the most important guys responsible for making sure he continues to drive freakin's income here, so my main goal is that when I see him getting too tight with a girl, I'd like to run disturbances, says Majlak.
In a year full of highly visible controversies and creator burnout, one of the biggest conversations YouTubers has in between is about the importance of having the right kind of support network. Some YouTubers prefer to do everything on their own hand, which means they do not have any checks or balances to keep them on the right track. Other YouTubers have people around them, but fame and influence make it hard to rob in a star. Even YouTubers who get the feedback they need, may not be willing to listen or seek help until after a setback. A week before the events in Japan, Paul received a warning from his daughters about his oppositions he was not aware of.
"You want to say this The behavior bites you in the butt ", he says she told him that time. "I do not know how I do not know when, but you have to crash and burn."
Logan Paul can no doubt still be up to his old Jackass style but on his channel these days , the stunts feel safe compared to some of the things he uploaded in 2017. And more importantly, despite failures at the beginning of the year, his career is still alive. Paul's podcast, meanwhile, paints a picture of a creator who wants to move away from his young audience on YouTube. Each upload comes with a warning that the content is "for the adult audience only."
What we experienced in Japan then appears as an unfortunate side effect of YouTube's slow realization that controversies are often a quick trace to many views – but these views can have consequences. Hollywood taught this lesson a long time ago but the necessity of creative supervision and professional guidance is likely to be a growing concern for the video platform that goes into 2019. Due to one of Shane Dawson's suggestions for the same infamous Jake Paul at the end of his doctrines, that he may need to hire someone to advise him. Majlak is probably one of the first of many YouTube fixers to come.