CHENNAI: The Tamil Nadu police have issued a second advisory the online game of dares called Blue Whale Challenge, which has been blamed for a spate of suicides and suicide attempts across the country.
These are the main points of the advisory.
What is Blue Whale?
The Blue Whale Game, also known as the Blue Whale Challenge, is an internet game. It consists of a series of dangerous tasks assigned to the player for a period of 50 days, with the final challenge being suicide. This game targets mostly teenagers and young adults.
The dangerous tasks given in Blue Whale include waking up at 04.20 am, watching horror videos alone, inflicting injuries to one’s own body, carving a picture of a whale on one’s forearm, climbing up the roof, or a crane, etc, and encouraging them to tag their friends on social media so as to challenge them to participate in the game.
How to protect children/students
A. Look out for the following symptoms and activities:
1. Becoming withdrawn from friends and family
2. Persistent low mood and unhappiness
3. Sudden outbursts and anger directed at themselves or others
4. Loss of interest in activities that they used to enjoy
5. Late night surfing
6. Spending more time on internet
7. Concealing online activity
8. Unusual injuries on the body
B. Parental Control: Know, Prevent and Protect
1. Monitor the child’s social media activity and ensure that they access them only when you are convinced that they are mature enough to handle them.
2. Monitor the child’s search history on the internet and get useful insights. They will help you to assess the state of mind of the child.
3. View the child’s text messages, call logs, posts on Facebook, Snapchat, WhatsApp, etc. Moreover, try to limit app usage and block sites that promote dangerous activities.
4. Children who have entered the game might have depression or suicidal thoughts. Recognize changes in the child’s kid’s behaviour that may point to depression or any mental problem.
5. Parents may be advised to change the settings on Playstore and activate parental controls for 3+ games permission alone.
6. Spend more time with children and encourage them to participate in outdoor games.