It’s a new year and people are already doing dumb things for their 15 minutes of internet fame.
Both Facebook and YouTube have started taking down videos of people eating Tide Pod laundry detergent in an effort to curb teenagers from poisoning themselves.
In short, people have been filming themselves eating Tide Pods detergent tabs as part of the growing #TidePodChallenge. The origins behind this challenge stem from a meme that popped up online a few years ago. Since it’s too much to explain here, there is a nice write up over at Knowyourmeme which gives a run down of how this all started.
Unlike other internet challenges, Tide Pods contain a number of toxic chemicals including bleach.
Ingesting these chemicals can result in serious inflammation of the digestive tract, and can induce other symptoms such as vomiting, abdominal pain, flatulence, and diarrhea.
YouTube and Facebook have also stepped in to actively take down any videos of people eating these Pods so as to hopefully prevent the spread of the trend, because people sometimes can’t think for themselves.
A YouTube spokesman had the following to say about the situation:
YouTube’s Community Guidelines prohibit content that’s intended to encourage dangerous activities that have an inherent risk of physical harm.
The American Association of Poison Control Centers also weighed in saying that they have received more phone calls about “intentional exposures” in just the first 15 days of 2018 versus the entire of 2016.