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Internet Challenges: Proceed With Caution!

Almost everyone is connected to the Internet, either through their mobile device or computer. Because of this high level of connectivity, things on the Internet can go ‘viral’ very easily. An image, video, or story is said to go viral when it is passed on quickly from one internet user to the other.

This can be done through email, messaging applications or social media. It is very much like how an actual virus would spread quickly from one carrier to another. Recently, many ‘Internet challenges’ have gone viral. Internet challenges work very much like old-fashioned chain letters. If you see someone doing a challenge online, you are encouraged to do it as well and post the outcome on the Internet as well. Someone else would then see your post and also do the challenge. Some of these Internet challenges are harmless fun and others are for a good cause. However, some internet challenges can actually be very dangerous!

Recently, the entertaining Mannequin Challenge became very popular. For this challenge, a group of people would stay absolutely still in all kinds of positions (just like mannequins!) while another person takes a video of them. The video is taken from various angles to accentuate the stillness of those posing. Even Barrack and Michelle Obama did their own Mannequin Challenge video in the White House with the Cleveland Cavaliers basketball team! Another example of a fun, harmless challenge is the Running Man Challenge. People are challenged to dance to the music of a song called “My

Boo” by Ghost Town DJs. They have to use the ‘running man’ dance move, which involves running in the same spot. Many army and police units joined in on the fun as well.

Other challenges can have a deeper meaning and can be for a good cause. A good example of this is the Ice Bucket Challenge. This challenge was created to raise awareness of the rare and often invisible Lou Gehrig’s disease, or ALS.

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old-fashioned (adj) – something that is no longer modern.
outcome (n) – the way something turns out.
mannequin (v) – a human-shaped dummy used to display clothes in a store.
accentuate (v) – make more obvious.
awareness (n) – knowledge of something.
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