YouTube has finally decided to put an end to potentially harmful viral content. The video sharing site has released an official statement regarding its plans of banning videos that might suggest and encourage users to participate in harmful activities that might lead to serious injuries.
“YouTube is home to many beloved viral challenges and pranks, but we need to make sure what’s funny doesn’t cross the line into also being harmful or dangerous”
Social media has been flooded with viral content inciting viewers to take part in bizarre and dangerous activities. The most popular potentially harmful videos are the challenges which tend to go viral instantly and reach millions of users who end up imitating or “participating” in the challenge and eventually put their own health at risk. Some famous viral challenges such as The fire challenge, The deodorant challenge, The mannequin challenge and The Tide Pod challenge have caught YouTube’s attention and encouraged the company to take action and draw the line. Starting this Wednesday, YouTube will ban these types of videos.
“YouTube is home to many beloved viral challenges and pranks, but we need to make sure what’s funny doesn’t cross the line into also being harmful or dangerous. We’ve updated our external guidelines to make it clear that we prohibit challenges presenting a risk of serious danger or death.”
YouTube will also ban “pranks that make victims believe they’re in serious physical danger, or cause children to experience severe emotional distress.”
YouTube’s new policies follow the latest BBC reports of a young 17-year-old possibly dying in a car accident while participating in the “Bird Box challenge”, influenced by the popular Netflix movie, as user are encouraged to carry out common activities blindfolded.