Netflix is warning their viewers not to partake in the “Bird Box Challenge,” a conceivably dangerous Internet trend where participants complete tasks while blindfolded.
Netflix took to Twitter to say that they don’t know how the challenge started but advised against anyone trying it. The challenge is directly inspired by “Bird Box,” a new film starring Sandra Bullock where she and her two young are forced to perform tasks blindfolded or supernatural beings will push them to suicide.
The New York Daily News reported that the “Bird Box Challenge” became popular after Snapchat provided a filter alluding to the film and featured videos by users who navigated areas blindfolded.
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Can’t believe I have to say this, but: PLEASE DO NOT HURT YOURSELVES WITH THIS BIRD BOX CHALLENGE. We don’t know how this started, and we appreciate the love, but Boy and Girl have just one wish for 2019 and it is that you not end up in the hospital due to memes.
— Netflix US (@netflix) January 2, 2019
“Bird Box” quickly gained a cult following, with Netflix announcing that more than 45 million accounts watched the post-apocalyptic thriller within the first week of its release. But the celebration quickly ended, as the streaming service expressed disbelief that they had to advise the Internet not to “end up in the hospital due to memes.”
Took off my blindfold this morning to discover that 45,037,125 Netflix accounts have already watched Bird Box — best first 7 days ever for a Netflix film! pic.twitter.com/uorU3cSzHR
— Netflix Film (@NetflixFilm) December 28, 2018
Videos that hit social media featured a blindfolded child knocking into a wall, a group of teens wandering around Walmart, and even a woman blindly cutting her own hair. According to Fox News, no injuries related to the challenge have been reported.
Despite Netflix’s public service announcement, New York Magazine’s Intelligencer claimed the hysteria over the “Bird Box Challenge” is just that. The outlet noted that a YouTube search of the so-called viral trend produces few results of the actual challenge—and plenty of videos of news stations advising against participating in it.
They quipped, “Teens weren’t snorting condoms in April. And people this month aren’t putting themselves in real danger participating in the Bird Box Challenge. Netflix, however, is getting a lot of free press.”
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[Featured Image: YouTube video screengrab]