“Momo Challenge” Promotes Youth Suicide Through Social Media
HORRY COUNTY, SC (ASHLEY GOODEN, WPDE-TV) — There’s a new warning for parents about a suicide challenge that has been spreading on social media along with a hair-raising image.
The Momo Challenge is all over the internet these days. It’s similar to the Blue Whale Challenge that led to reports of suicides in Russia and the United States.
Some teens say Momo looks like a CreepyPasta story character named Jeff the Killer.
Various Youtubers say if you come in contact with Momo, through social media apps like WhatsApp, YouTube or Facebook, you’re asked to follow orders and threatened if you don’t.
Sandra Hosner says her grandson showed her Momo.
“I don’t want him to kill himself over her, and that’s what would happen. They are very impressionable at age 12. I just…that’s my opinion, I don’t like her. ‘Momo, no, no!’ That’s what I told my grandson ‘get that off of Grandma’s phone. I don’t want you near that thing, anywhere near it!'”
That’s why parents like Lisa Cooper limit their kids on social media.
“They don’t even get phones or social media access until they’re teenagers, and then they’re limited to what they can be on. I have to be able to follow them, I have all their passwords and everything else just to keep a close eye on them all the time,” said Cooper.
Sean Mirzaev, 17, says he appreciates his mom for that reason.
“It’s kind of annoying that she’s invading my privacy, but I can know that she just wants the best for me and hopefully all other parents can follow my mom’s footsteps, her guidelines for doing this,” said Mirzaev.
Experts say, parents, if you see something, say something.
“That goes for their children, or if their children may have told them about some other children who may be in danger. contact authorities,” said Corporal Tom Vest, Myrtle Beach Police Department spokesman.
If you have any concerns or receive the message, you can contact South Carolina’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force program. Just click here.
The picture of Momo is from the work of a Japanese artist named Midori Hayashi. The artist is not associated with the Momo challenge.