The Broom Challenge Sends The Internet Into A Frenzy But It’s Sort Of A Hoax

Demonstrators hold brooms in a symbolic gesture to "sweep" away racism and intolerance as Pegida supporters make their weekly march on January 12, 2015 in Dresden, Germany. Pegida is an acronym for 'Patriotische Europaeer Gegen die Islamisierung des Abendlandes,' which translates to 'Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamification of the West,' and has quickly gained local mass appeal by demanding a more restrictive policy on Germany's acceptance of foreign refugees and asylum seekers. Critics, including leading German politicians, implored Pegida supporters not to march tonight and not to use the Paris attacks as a means to further their goals, which many view as xenophobic. The first Pegida march took place in Dresden in October and Pegida has since attracted thousands of participants to its weekly gatherings that have also begun spreading to other cities in Germany, though so far with only a few hundred participants. Germany is accepting a record number of refugees this year, especially from war-torn Syria, and the country has also witnessed the rise of Salafist movements in numerous immigrant-heavy German cities. Both phenomena have promoted Pegida's rise and appeal.
Carsten Koall / Getty Images

The Broom Challenge has taken the internet by storm, but the truth is, it’s actually a hoax. There is no doubt that a broom can actually stand on its own, as proven by the countless videos and photos left by users participating in the newest internet fad.

However, in the initial viral video clip that kicked off the challenge, a Twitter user made an interesting claim.

“Okay so NASA said today was the only day a broom can stand up on its own because of the gravitational pull…I didn’t believe it at first but OMG,” reads the tweet. This one tweet kicked off the flurry of broom photos you’re seeing all over social media.

People All Over The Country Have Been Posting Photos Of Their Brooms Standing Upright

The claim referencing NASA claimed that only on February 10, 2020, could a broom stand upright on its own. Many were led to believe that the gravitational pull or planetary alignment that was occurring on February 10 was the reason that brooms were able to balance in the middle of your kitchen floor.

Once #broomchallenge started to trend on Twitter, users couldn’t help but test it out on their own. Even television commentator Lou Dobbs got in on the action, albeit with the full knowledge that it had nothing to do with anything other than how the broom was constructed.

“Try this at home!” wrote Dobbs in the caption of a photo he tweeted. “And it has nothing to do with planetary alignment or full moon!”

Hip hop superstar Future also tried out the broom challenge, taking to his Instagram stories to show off his upright standing broom. The rapper posed next to the broom and offered no insight as to whether or not he thought it was related to the cosmos.

The Broom Challenge Is A Hoax

The Broom Challenge is nothing new and has been making the rounds on the internet as long ago as 2012, when CNNreleased a video that saw meteorologist Chad Myers debunk the theories that once again claimed brooms were standing due to a gravitational pull caused by the spring equinox.

“If you go buy a broom and stand it up on its own, all it is about is balance,” said Myers as he stood two brooms next to each other. “The center of gravity is right above the bristles. If you can make the bristles make a small little tripod down there, they’ll stand up every day, not just today.”

NASA has not released a statement debunking their involvement in the challenge and it is unlikely they will.