Why Shane Dawson shouldn’t use mental health as entertainment

Shane Dawson is quickly becoming the king of Youtube documentary, or as it's known docuseries

Shane's intimate style of storytelling, relatability and empathetic approach to Bunny Meyer (grav3yardgirl) and the queen, Jeffree Star, earned him millions upon millions of views.

Fans ranted and raved about just how good the series had been, and it's true, Shane captured and exposed the beautiful human side of the highly successful Youtubers and reminded us all, that they were in fact, human. 


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So it has absolutely floored us that the 30-year-old has missed the mark so badly with the Jake Paul series.

It has nothing to do with Jake Paul himself, but rather the way Shane approaches mental health, and in particular sociopaths.

Shane has released four of the eight part series and while a lot of people have said his latest video completely turned the series around – the aroma of the sh*t show he caused, still lingers.

The biggest question mark is that Shane is very open with his own battles with his mental health – so why on earth would he want to add to the stigma surrounding mental health?

Time and time again, Shane reiterates throughout his videos that he isn't branding Jake as a sociopath.

But even with his feeble attempts to disclaimer it, it doesn't take away from the real fact that it's dangerous and irresponsible to even suggest the idea.

Shane has no qualifications that could allow him to make that sort of call about someone – and he's spreading this message to MILLIONS of people.

I understand that he has said it's for entertainment purposes, but mental health shouldn't be glossed up with some Hollywood drama.

Anyone who lives with a mental health disorder knows the reality of their disorder – unglamorous, unapologetic and relentless.

And, when you're talking about mental health, you have a responsibility to report it accurately and with sensitivity.

The third part of the series, titled: The Dark Side of Jake Paul, Shane simply relies on videos that have been uploaded to Youtube to prove a point, he uses clips and Instagram images of Logan and Jake Paul to fit the narrative of a sociopath.

The therapist Kati Morton creates this monster like image of sociopaths, it really demonises a serious mental health disorder.

The real kicker comes as they dramatise and exaggerate the stat that one in 25 are sociopaths. This information has been widely publicised after the book, The Sociopath Next Door was released.

However, in an older edition of a book, DSM-IV, it stated that the prevalence of Antisocial Personality Disorder (APD) in a population sample is about 3 percent for males and about 1 percent for females.

Furthermore, the book highlights that just because someone has APD doesn't mean that they are a sociopath. 

And while I'm a huge fan of Shane and really respect his work – editorially, he's a genius, his edits and montages are some of the best on Youtube.

His latest series has been extremely self-indulgent – you could watch from the Enemies of Jake Paul and skip the first three videos because it's 90 percent of Shane just speculating, with no real evidence.

I would actually advise anyone who hasn't watched the first three – not to bother. – You'll do yourself a favour by missing the demonisation of sociopaths.

If these series have done anything – it's shown us how not to talk about a mental health disorder.