Blue Whale: An Online Suicide Game Potentially Linked to Over a Hundred Deaths

May 10, 2017|Posted in: Health

Since Dec 2013 to May 2016, a Russian Investigative Committee has uncovered eight virtual groups promoting suicidal behavior. The groups target and encourage vulnerable teens online to commit suicide. In the game “Blue Whale,” participants are assigned an administrator or curator. Over the course of 50 days that administrator/curator gives the participant daily challenges.1 Initially, the tasks are simple, such as watching horror movies and waking up at unusual hours. However, the tasks slowly escalate and become increasingly dangerous when participants are instructed to search for high-rise buildings to jump from, distance themselves from friends and family, and commit acts of self-mutilation.

Help can be sought by contacting the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (NSPL) on 1-800-273-8255, or by going to their interactive website at https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org. The NSPL is a national network of local crisis centers that provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress and can be contacted 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.