YouTube is absolutely filled with videos of teens doing stupid things — but perhaps none are quite as stupid as eating liquid laundry detergent. The social media sharing site has begun deleting “Tide Pod Challenge” videos, claiming they violate the website’s community guidelines.
“YouTube’s Community Guidelines prohibit content that’s intended to encourage dangerous activities that have an inherent risk of physical harm,” a spokesperson for YouTube told The Daily Meal. “We work to quickly remove flagged videos that violate our policies.”
Unlike other unhealthy but comparatively benign food trends, like the “Cinnamon Challenge” and consuming gross numbers of calories on camera, the Tide Pod Challenge has teens risking their lives for the sake of subscribers. Regardless of doctor warnings that the challenge is “life-threatening” and overall a really bad idea, the craze continues to thrive on Twitter and everywhere else online.
YouTube, however, has never been tolerant of the trend.
“We’ve long had policies around harmful and dangerous challenges like this one and we remove the content when flagged,” the spokesperson told The Daily Meal. “We’ve been removing these Tide Pod videos for a while now … prior to the media picking up on this challenge over the last few days.”
With the trend growing in popularity, even Tide has joined the campaign to stop teens from gobbling up their product. They collaborated with gridiron star Rob Gronkowski, also known as “Gronk,” to make a video explaining the obvious — that the detergent pods are not to be eaten.
“No no no no no,” Gronk repeats again and again.
Under YouTube’s guidelines, this video is allowed. “Videos that discuss the challenge in a news setting or educational or documentary way are allowed,” the YouTube spokesperson explained.
Yet these attempts at educating America’s youth are not working — the replies to Tide’s tweet consisted mostly of elaborate plates loaded with inedible Tide Pods.
Hopefully, teens will realize the danger and stop this soapy madness soon. We thought 2017 was bad — but this year’s food trends seem dumber than the last.