Internet challenges are becoming scarier every year. They began as something people would do for fun, but as time went on, it turned into something people do for likes and views on social media. The more greed fed into these challenges, the worse and more dangerous they became. Internet challenges are no longer just for fun and are getting out of control.
In 2017, the internet learned of a new challenge called the “No Lackin challenge." It’s just as ridiculous as it sounds. The concept involves two friends pretending to argue and pulling their guns on each other to make sure either friend isn’t “lackin’” a gun. As expected, the challenge went too far when a 17-year-old boy in Memphis was shot in the head by his 21-year-old friend.
This challenge came not long after the infamous “Tide Pod challenge” that went viral in 2017. For whatever reason, people found it intriguing to record themselves biting into laundry detergent packs. This was not long after Tide did an awareness commercial reminding parents to keep Tide Pods out of reach from small children. The commercial should have spread a little more awareness, but adolescents should also know better than to consume laundry detergent at all.
According to Gary L. Wenk of Psychology Today, the frontal lobes of young adults haven’t completed a process called "myelination," meaning electrical signals from neurons aren’t reaching their destination. This is what causes them to feel invincible in certain situations, including attempting internet challenges. Regardless, there are things that make logical sense and things that don’t. Doing reckless activities for the sake of views isn’t something that seems rational.
What else is it going to take for people to realize it doesn’t make sense to put their lives in harm's way for the sake of entertainment? The “No Lackin challenge” resulted in someone being hospitalized in critical condition. New York lawmakers are having to consider requiring detergent companies to make their products look “less appealing.” There is no reason for companies to feel pressured to change their products for the sake of making them look less appetizing to young adults. There’s no reason for people to be losing their lives to internet challenges. We need to be more weary of what we’re making popular in our communities, and people need to start making better decisions.
Chantelle Baker is a 21-year-old communication studies senior from Waipahu, Hawaii.