Tuesday April 23, 2019
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Going Viral: Fun and Fatal Social Media Challenges

The challenge encouraged nominated participants to be filmed having a bucket of ice water poured on their heads and then nominating others to do the same

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InstagramAn affordable way to boost your content . Pixabay

By Durga Chakravarty

The growing popularity of social media platforms has seen an upsurge in viral trends — some fun, but some fatal to human life. Be it the ice bucket challenge or the latest #Birdboxchallenge — these have swept the Internet as netizens from all around the globe join in to perform certain situations, dances, voices or even speeches for entertainment.

IANS gives a lowdown on the popular challenges that have taken over social media over the past few years:

* #10yearchallenge: The latest entry to the growing list of viral challenges on social media is the 10-Year Challenge, which has caught the attention of many. In this, a person is required to share his recent image alongside a 10-year-old photograph to see the difference. From Hollywood to Bollywood and the local neighbourhood, everyone took a moment to rewind the clock and compare their looks.

* #Birdboxchallenge: This originated from streaming website Netflix’s film “Bird Box”, starring Sandra Bullock. In the film, Bullock and two children navigate a post-apocalyptic world while blindfolded to avoid seeing an ominous figure which causes death for humans. After the film’s release, people uploaded and shared videos of themselves wandering around blindfolded, undertaking the challenge, which is inspired by scenes depicted in the movie. As various accidents began taking place, Netflix urged fans of the film not to do the challenge due to safety concerns.

* #Kikichallenge: This challenge saw people across the globe dancing on the hit song “In My Feeling” from the album “Scorpion” by Canadian hip-hop superstar Drake. The challenge, which took the Internet by storm, showed fans suddenly coming out of a moving car, leaving the door open and then dancing to the song besides the slow-moving vehicle on the road. This was risky too.

* #Fluffchallenge: This was a disappearing game that people all around the world attempted to try to fool their pets, mostly dogs. With a large piece of cloth in hand and a doorway nearby, the owners would shake the cloth multiple times and then disappear behind a wall, leaving the pet confused or reacting oddly.

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The Mannequin Challenge was video trend which became popular in 2016-17. Pixabay

* The Dele Alli hand challenge: English footballer Dele Alli’s hand-salute gesture left the social media users in a tizzy. His gesture covering his eye with a looped finger and odd twist of the wrist, created quite a buzz, with many trying different ways to successfully try it.

* Mannequin challenge: The Mannequin Challenge was video trend which became popular in 2016-17. The challenge was for people to remain frozen in their position like mannequins while a camera moved around and filmed them, with the song “Black beatles” by hip-hop duo Rae Sremmurd playing in the background.

* Kylie Jenner lip challenge: As Kylie Jenner flaunted her fuller lips on social media, a new challenge emerged among teenaged girls, who idolised the make-up mogul. They would insert their lips into a shot glass, small jar or bottle, then suck out the air, creating a vacuum hoping to have pouty lips like popular reality TV star.

Also Read- Parents Need to Act Quickly to Handle a Child’s Fears, Says Maneka Gandhi

* Ice Bucket Challenge: The Ice Bucket Challenge, also called the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. It was an activity involving the dumping of a bucket of ice and water over a person’s head, either by another person or self-administered, to promote awareness of the disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, also known as motor neuron disease and in the US as Lou Gehrig’s disease) and encourage donations to research.

The challenge encouraged nominated participants to be filmed having a bucket of ice water poured on their heads and then nominating others to do the same. A common stipulation is that nominated participants have 24 hours to comply or forfeit by way of a charitable financial donation. (IANS)

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Here’s Why Sri Lanka Does not Trust Social Media Platforms

Sri Lanka temporarily shut down Facebook earlier in 2018 after hate speech spread on the company’s apps resulted in mob violence

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Sri Lankan military officials stand guard in front of the St. Anthony's Shrine, Kochchikade church after an explosion in Colombo, Sri Lanka, April 21, 2019. VOA

Battling the spread of hate speech on social media platforms especially Facebook for long, the Sri Lanka government on Sunday once again “temporarily blocked” social media from spreading fake news in the wake of deadly suicide bombings in the island that killed 290 people.

In a brief statement, the Sri Lankan President’s Secretary Udaya Seneviratne said the government has “decided to temporarily block social media sites including Facebook and Instagram in an effort to curb false news reports”.

Several users in the country reported they could not access Facebook and its photo-sharing service Instagram, Google-owned YouTube and WhatsApp for most part of the day.

Facebook spokesperson Ruchika Budhraja told TechCrunch that “teams from across Facebook have been working to support first responders and law enforcement as well as to identify and remove content which violates its standards”.

Google did not immediately comment.

“It’s a rare but not unprecedented step for a government to block access to widely used sites and services,” said the report.

Sri Lanka has been criticizing Facebook and its platforms for long when it comes to the spread of hate speech.

The island country in March ordered Internet and mobile service providers to temporarily block Facebook and its subsidiaries WhatsApp and Instagram as part of a crackdown on online hate speeches.

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Multiple apps are displayed on an iPhone in New York. VOA

“These platforms are banned because they were spreading hate speeches and amplifying them,” government spokesperson Harindra B. Dassanayake was quoted as saying in The New York Times.

The claims are supported by non-profit Freedom House which found “hate speech against minorities continues to foment on various social media platforms, particularly Facebook”.

Last May, a coalition of activists from eight countries, including India, Sri Lanka and Myanmar, called on Facebook to put in place a transparent and consistent approach to moderation.

Activists argued that the lack of local moderators a” specifically moderators fluent in the Sinhalese language spoken by the country’s Buddhist majority — had allowed hate speech run wild on the platform.

Also Read- Decide on TikTok by Wednesday, or Ban Ends: SC

The coalition demanded civil rights and political bias audits into Facebook’s role in abetting human rights abuses, spreading misinformation and manipulation of democratic processes in their respective countries.

Sri Lanka temporarily shut down Facebook earlier in 2018 after hate speech spread on the company’s apps resulted in mob violence. (IANS)