No Mo

No Mo

Unique. Revolutionary. Awesome. Infinite.
The power of the internet is all that and even more superlatives. However, as we have documented in this space plenty of times, the internet’s power depends on who’s pounding out the keystrokes. It can be a source of enlightenment and happiness. But it can also be heinous.
Unfortunately, the internet can be a bottomless source of pleasure for bottom feeders; a boundless force of negativity. The latest iteration of internet evil comes in the form of something dubbed the Momo Challenge.
According to the Chicago Tribune, the Momo Challenge “threatens children by telling them that if they don’t do things like light the stove and blow out the flames, filling their house with gas, Momo will kill them.”
One sheriff remarked, “I can attest to it. It’s incredibly scary.”
In recent weeks it has been debunked as an urban legend or hoax about a nonexistent social media challenge that was spread on Facebook and other media outlets. It was reported that children and adolescents were being enticed by a user named Momo to perform a series of dangerous tasks including violent attacks and suicide.
“Momo was a fictional Japanese creature that was a piece of art, if you want to call it that, but someone took it to another level where they started sending videos of it to little kids through things like or YouTube that want the kids to engage in dangerous behavior like sticking a knife into a socket,” Richard Wistocki, a retired Naperville police officer and cyber bullying expert who founded BeSure Consulting, told the Tribune.
Hoax or urban legend—depending on the maturity of the audience, the threat can feel real.
That’s why parents and guardians have to carefully watch their little ones’ internet consumption.
“There is no such thing as privacy for children,” Wistocki told ABC 7 Eyewitness News.
So what is a parent/guardian/teacher to do? According to the Chicago Children’s Advocacy Center, it begins with maintaining open communication.
Other ways to limit a child’s exposure to horrific things like the Momo Challenge:
• Demonstrate interest in your child’s online activity by using the internet with them
• Keep computers in high traffic areas of your home like a living room
• Use privacy settings and parent controls
• Set rules and limits for when and how long kids can be online, and consider posting the rules or a pledge by the family computer
• Be aware of who your child talks to online – be their Facebook friend and follow them on Instagram, Twitter and SnapChat
And for those that would perpetuate the hoax, there’s a special, unique, revolutionary, infinite circle of Hell waiting for you whenever you log off for good.


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