Alex Jones is back on YouTube despite ban, thanks to YouTuber Logan Paul

By Sophie Lewis

/ CBS News

Far-right conspiracy theorist and InfoWars host Alex Jones, who was banned from YouTube eight months ago, he returned Wednesday, sitting down with YouTuber Logan Paul. Jones two-hour podcast uploaded to one of Paul's YouTube channels.

"He is the most banned person in the 21st century," Paul said as he introduced Jones on his show, "Impaulsive." Jones immediately started talking about free speech, and how "it's a bunch of bull" Paul is restricted so often on various platforms.

Jones was banned from YouTube last August for hate speech after spreading conspiracy theories about the 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. A number of platforms banned Jones around the same time as YouTube, including Facebook, Twitter, Apple, Spotify and Pinterest, among others. Despite the ban, Jones recently made a four-hour appearance on Joe Rogan's podcast, also uploaded to YouTube.

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While the episode is live on Paul's podcast channel, YouTube has restricted it, so it isn't running with ads. Some platforms — like Twitch — do not allow banned users from appearing on other channels. However, YouTube's community guidelines do not explicitly prohibit it. YouTube has not responded to CBS News' request for comment.

ALEX JONES IS… ALEX JONES – IMPAULSIVE EP. 60 by Impaulsive on YouTube

Paul is a bonafide YouTube sensation. He has more than 18 million subscribers on his main channel and 1.4 million on his "Impaulsive" channel. His vlogs are extremely popular, especially among pre-teens. He made headlines in January 2018 after filming and uploading a video in Japan's Aokigahara forest, also known as the "suicide forest," in which he filmed a dead body.

YouTube temporarily banned him at the time, but he has not experienced the extensive de-platforming that Jones has. But, like Jones, Paul makes a significant amount of his income selling merch, which he plugs any chance he gets.

"You've been de-platformed, you've been silenced, and you've been ridiculed," Paul said. "What is it like being Alex Jones?"

"It's awesome," Jones replied, comparing himself to a supervillain in an action movie.

Jones spoke on the podcast for more than two hours. Paul and his co-hosts pushed back on a few of his points, but mostly, they allowed Jones to rant about whatever he wanted. Jones brought up number of conspiracy theories about Pizzagate, Hillary Clinton, Megyn Kelly and his dislike of the mainstream media, weapons of mass destruction and the Sandy Hook shooting.

On the last topic, Jones maintained his innocence in regards to the current lawsuits against him by over a dozen Sandy Hook parents. He also compared the controversy to Paul filming the dead body in Japan. Paul said during the interview he was not fact-checking Jones, but rather assuming he was being factual.

Toward the end, Paul tries to bring the podcast back to his central points. "You're not hearing what I'm saying," he said, "I'm saying some of the words you choose inherently have such a negative connotation that they offend a large group of people."

But Jones never really responds. He instead poured himself another glass of what he claimed to be vodka and loudly plugged InfoWars' website.

First published on April 11, 2019 / 10:40 PM

© 2019 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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