Blue Whale is a video game said to have originated in Russia and its creator was reportedly arrested by Russian police earlier this year.The game gives players a series of 50 quests, with the final task asking them to commit suicide. The game also asks players to document the completion of each task in the form of photographs. It is said that a group administrator assigns daily tasks that one must complete for 50 days. Some of the tasks involve self mutilation, watching horror movies and waking up at unusual hours. Thee tasks get more extreme as days pass. For the final task, players are directed to jump off a terrace building while, again, documenting the act in the form of photos/video.
There is still uncertainty over how a participant plays the game. While some say the user has to install some app on their smart phone, others say it’s via social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook where the administrators get in touch with the participant after those interested throw out postings on social media asking for a “curator”. A number of different hashtags— #bluewhalechallenge, #curatorfindme, #i_am_whale — act as signals for the anonymous curators.
police in Russia are said to be probing at least 130 suicides which they fear are linked to the online game. Two schoolgirls, Yulia Konstantinova, 15, and Veronika Volkova, 16, recently fell to their deaths from the roof of an apartment block in industrial Ust-Ilimsk, Russia.
Most of the children who were reported dead were from well-to-do families.
The biggest fear is that since it is an online entity and spread over the internet, it can be accessed from anywhere. Parents must remain vigilant about their children’s online activities. It would also help if they talk to their children to help create awareness about malicious content online.