- People are eating laundry detergent pods as part of the Tide Pod Challenge and poisoning themselves.
- Major social media sites are trying to put a stop to it by taking down videos of people doing it.
- The Tide Pod Challenge is a growing worry among product safety organizations.
YouTube is taking down videos of the Tide Pod Challenge in an attempt to stem the growing trend of people biting into the candy-colored detergent pods and poisoning themselves.
“YouTube’s Community Guidelines prohibit content that’s intended to encourage dangerous activities that have an inherent risk of physical harm,” a Google spokesperson told CNN. “We work to quickly remove flagged videos that violate our policies.”
Facebook and Instagram have also been removing videos of people biting into Tide Pods, according to CNN. Facebook told CNN it also removes videos where users harm themselves.
Joking about eating Tide Pods has long been a meme. They’re colorful and a lot of people think they look like candy. In 2015, The Onion even published a satirical op-ed from the perspective of a child yearning to consume one.
But in the past month, people — often kids — have transitioned to actually eating them and posting videos to social media. The viral phenomenon seems to only be growing.
I thought y’all were so weird for talking about eating Tide pods but now I been thinking about how weird it is for so long that now I’m thinking it might not be weird and I wanna eat one too what is this
— h (@halsey) December 28, 2017
-amazing mouth feel
-delicious smell pic.twitter.com/EFlFSnScSq
— tick tock its sad o’clock (@fevervinyI) December 28, 2017
How many licks does it take to get to the center of a tide pod?
— Father Mac (@Machaizelli) January 17, 2018
forget tide pods we eating the cotton candy behind the walls now pic.twitter.com/nDo5ZOjorZ
— Jordan Rutledge (@JordanRutledge) January 17, 2018
The Tide Pod Challenge led the American Association of Poison Control Centers to issue an alert, saying it received more calls about people being exposed to laundry pods in the first two weeks of this year than it did in the entirety of 2016.
“A recent trend among teenagers ingesting the packets — and uploading videos to various internet platforms including video-sharing websites, social media, and vlogging platforms — has caused significant concern among poison control centers,” the association said.
In the past five years, eight people have died from eating laundry detergent pods, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.
The viral challenge also led Tide to wage an advertising campaign against it, recruiting New England Patriots team member Rob Gronkowski to tell people not to eat Tide Pods.
What should Tide PODs be used for? DOING LAUNDRY. Nothing else.
— Tide (@tide) January 12, 2018
“We are deeply concerned about conversations related to intentional and improper use of liquid laundry pacs and have been working with leading social media networks to remove harmful content that is not consistent with their policies,” a representative for Procter & Gamble, Tide’s parent company, told CNN.
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