Blue Whale: What parents should do
THE HANS INDIA |
Sep 03,2017 , 03:30 AM IST
A 17-year-old Russian girl, an alleged administrator of the deadly Blue Whale suicide challenge, was arrested from the Khabarovsk Krai region in south-east Russia, reports said. Russian police raided her house and released a video which showed portraits of Philip Budeikin, the Russian psychology student who confessed to inventing the game and currently is in prison.
According to Unicef India, the Blue Whale challenge is an online game. The game is named so because sometimes whales beach themselves intentionally and die. In this game, an online administrator assigns tasks to its participants.
The participants are given a period of 50 days to complete each task. Blue Whale is not a freely downloadable game, application or software. Children cannot access it on their smartphones through app stores or on social media platforms like Facebook. It is shared among secretive groups on social media networks. The creators seek out their players/victims and send them an invitation to join.
Some of the challenges in this game are listed as follows: Carve with a razor “f57” on your hand, send a photo to the curator; Wake up at 4.20 a.m. and watch psychedelic and scary videos that curator sends you; Cut your arm with a razor along your veins, but not too deep, only 3 cuts, send a photo to the curator; Cut your lip; Do something painful to yourself, make yourself sick; Go to the highest roof you can find, stand on the edge for some time; Make 1 cut on your body per day; Jump off a high building. Take your life.
Most child psychologists say when a child tends to stay by himself/herself, stops interacting with family and friends, often talks about running away from home or even death, or changes eating and/or sleeping habits must be immediately given special attention.
Make sure that your child has access to age appropriate online sites which do not promote unethical behavior or violence. Talk to your child more often. Explore the online world together and engage in interesting activities demonstrating ethical and safe online behaviour.
Be alert to any unusual changes like moodiness, less or no communication, lack of interest in studies and falling grades. If you notice any such changes, closely monitor his/her online activities, talk to school authorities or consult a child psychologist.