The value of social media fame is now driving some teens to literally set themselves on fire. It's not as offensive as the "selfies at funerals" trend, but it's much more terrifying. You can find certain social media trends and topics by searching for "hashtags," and I was shocked at the videos that I discovered after searching "#FireChallenge."
I wouldn't advise you to search it, but I found teen after teen setting themselves on fire. The worst part is that their peers don't react in horror. They encourage their friends to keep setting themselves on fire, rewarding them with "likes" and promotion.
I remember being a teen. Exploring a supposedly-haunted house is a rite of passage for many kids, but this is going too far. A 15-year-old in Lexington, Kentucky suffered second-degree burns after dousing himself in flammable liquid and setting his torso on fire.
Warning: An embedded video on the next page might be offensive or shocking to some readers.
My question is this: How do we help teens understand what is and isn't safe? If trends like these keep encouraging our kids to put themselves in danger, what will social media look like in 20 years? Talk to the teens in your life about how they use social media, and be sure to set clear boundaries about what is and isn't OK.
Oh, and if your teen is going to be driving soon then showing them this free game might just save their life.