Blue Whale Challenge took the lives of two Iranian girls. The girls were 17 and 18 years old from Isfahan, one of the provinces of Iran.
Two teenage girls committed suicide by jumping off a highway bridge on 21st of October, under the influence of Blue Whale game in Isfahan. Isfahan police later discovered an audio message allegedly recorded by the girls saying farewell to their parents and informing them about their intention to suicide in order to finish the game.
Even a month ago, the Iranian ICT Minister, Mohammad Javad Azari Jahromi, posted a message on his official Instagram account to warn parents and teachers about the spread of Blue Whale challenge among Iranian teens.
Azari Jahromi posted another message after the news, stating that parents should be aware of their children’s activities on social media since there are risks such as Blue Whale Challenge, however, by putting the time and energy they could bring the positive side of social media to their homes and families.
About Blue Whale Challenge
Blue Whale made its debut in Russia almost four years ago in 2013. It’s described as a game, but the Blue Whale Challenge is far from a game. Young teens who accept the challenge are encouraged to complete a series of tasks which get more and more sinister and at the end of the game the player is urged to take their own life in order to win.
A group of administrators or a certain curator gives the participant a task to complete daily, for a period of 50 days. Plus, participants are expected to share the photos of the challenges and tasks completed by them. These daily tasks start off easy, such as listening to certain genres of music, waking up at odd hours, watching a horror movie, among others, and then slowly escalate to carving out shapes on one’s skin, self-mutilation and eventually suicide.
The Blue Whale suicide game goes by many names including A Silent House, A Sea Of Whales and Wake Me Up At 4:20am. It takes 50 days to complete the game and is played primarily via the website VKontakte, which is a popular social network in Russia. It gets its name from a common belief that blue whales voluntarily beach themselves in order to end their own lives.
The game is attracting teens as young as 12-year-old in Russia and Central Asian countries but recent reports suggest the game could be spreading across Europe and into the UK. The game has been blamed by the Russian media as the reason why 80 to 130 children committed suicide between November 2015 and April 2016.
Recently its creator was sentenced to three years of imprisonment for seeking out and instigating teenagers on the internet to take the challenge, which ends up in the participant committing suicide.