Blue Whale challenge is a hoax

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Cumbria Police say that they are aware of rumours circulating that relate to an internet ‘challenge’ that involves strangers persuading children to self-harm though social media platforms.

A spokesperson said:

"We would like to reassure the public that there have been no confirmed cases of any local children taking part in the so called ‘Blue Whale Challenge’ and it is believed at this time to be a hoax.

"If anyone is concerned about their child’s safety, you can contact police on 101 or email: [email protected]"

Blue Whale" first attracted news coverage in May 2016 in an article in Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta that linked many unrelated child suicides to membership of group "F57" on the Russian-based VK social network.

However, the piece was later criticised for attempting to make a causal link where none existed, and none of the suicides were found to be a result of the group activities. Claims of suicides connected to the game have been reported worldwide, but none have been confirmed.

The story has been reported worldwide in many media outlets - a textbook example of how misinformation about online harm can itself be harmful.

Read more on the BBC. 

If you need to talk to someone, call the Samaritans on 116 123.

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Cleator Moor | Cumbria: Little Ireland: Blue Whale challenge is a hoax
Blue Whale challenge is a hoax
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Cleator Moor | Cumbria: Little Ireland
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