Browsing Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and many other websites is difficult to do without running across references to “The Momo Challenge.” As The Inquisitr reported earlier today, even celebrities such as Kim Kardashian have started to come forward urging YouTube to take necessary steps to stop the spread of the Momo Challenge.
According to an exclusive report by The Verge, YouTube has heard the pleas across the internet and confirmed they were taking steps to crush the Momo problem spreading across their platform.
According to The Verge, YouTube plans to demonetize any videos referencing the Momo Challenge. The media outlet went on to clarify that this includes news organizations and popular YouTube creators mentioning the viral challenge in any nature.
New outlets such as ABC, CNN, CBS, and many more have uploaded news stories containing video clips of Momo – and YouTube is not monetizing any of them. Moreover, most videos include disturbing content warnings prior to showing clips featuring Momo.
For those who are unfamiliar with the Momo Challenge, it is a scary viral girl with monster-like features that many are accusing of brainwashing and terrorizing small children into doing things they may not otherwise have done. Many have urged parents to monitor their children when browsing YouTube and YouTube Kids, or to consider removing the applications altogether if they are not able to keep a close eye on what their children are watching.
Speaking directly to The Verge, the streaming video website confirmed any content on their website featuring anything related to the Momo Challenge was a direct violation of their advertiser-friendly content guidelines. While this does not necessarily mean anything containing information referencing the challenge is being removed from the platform, it does mean these videos will not receive any advertisements.
“Video content that promotes harmful or dangerous acts that result in serious physical, emotional, or psychological injury is not suitable for advertising,” YouTube’s policy on advertiser-friendly content reads.
The video streaming giant also bars anything “offensive” or “inappropriate” from being monetized.
Both The Verge and YouTube go on to clarify not monetizing videos featuring Momo content is not a new policy.
Momo originated as an urban legend on Reddit. It wasn’t until last year when an Indonesian newspaper blamed the suicide of a 12-year-old girl on “The Momo Challenge” that it picked up traction and started to make waves on social media.
The challenge originally involved receiving text messages from a stranger on WhatsApp with instructions on various ways to inflict self-harm. More recently, people started to see clips of Momo popping up in videos on both YouTube and YouTube Kids.
According to a separate report from The Inquisitr, YouTube has also recently released a statement announcing that they were having trouble loading the videos many were claiming contained hidden messages from the Momo Challenge anywhere on their platform.
If you or someone you know is in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741. For readers outside the U.S., visit Suicide.org or Befrienders Worldwide for international resources you can use to find help.