Black Challenge. Please note the information
I have just received the following information about a Tic Toc sensation doing the rounds - its certainly worth noting.
TikTok is no stranger to dangerous viral trends. From "dry-scooping" and eating pre-workout powder by itself to climbing on tall stacks of milk crates to removing your own IUD (!), and eating massive amounts of frozen honey and corn syrup, the "blackout challenge" is just the latest in a string of activities that can harm users and even lead to death.
The "blackout challenge" has been around since at least 2008, according to People, but it started making the rounds on TikTok again back in 2021. Experts have warned young users not to try the trend, which previously led to more than 80 deaths, per the CDC.
Still, parents are struggling to stay on top of all the challenges that end up on their children's screens. And many of them are turning to TikTok for answers, including the family of 9-year-old Arriani Arroyo.
Arriani was found dead in February of 2021 after participating in the blackout challenge, and her parents are filing a lawsuit against the social media giant in hopes of keeping other kids safe and avoiding another death, according to the family's attorney Matthew Bergman, per Wisconsin radio station WTMJ
“The most important thing is just [how] deadly this TikTok blackout challenge is and how predictable it was,” Bergman told WTMJ. And Arriani's family isn't the only one taking legal action.
Read on for all the details behind the deadly challenge and the other lawsuits that TikTok is facing.
What is the 'Blackout Challenge'?
Also referred to as the "choking challenge" or the "pass-out challenge," the "blackout challenge" encourages users to hold their breath until they pass out due to a lack of oxygen, People reported.
“What is actually going on in the brain is a lack of oxygen similar to when someone is drowning, choking, or having a cardiac arrest,” Dr. Nick Flynn explained to the Irish Examiner. “If you have low oxygen to the brain for over three minutes you can get brain damage and if you have low oxygen to the brain for over five minutes it can result in death.”
The CDC also released a list of signs that might indicate someone is trying the "blackout challenge," including:
- Bloodshot eyes
- Marks on their neck
- Severe headaches
- Feeling disoriented after spending time alone
"Because most parents in the study had not heard of the choking game, we hope to raise awareness of the choking game among parents, health care providers, and educators, so they can recognize warning signs of the activity," said Robin L. Toblin, Ph.D., M.P.H., according to the CDC. "This is especially important because children themselves may not appreciate the dangers of this activity."