Momo ‘suicide game’ tells boy, 8, to hold knife to his neck | Daily Mail Online28 Febbraio 2019
- Lyn Dixon’s son was encouraged to hold a knife to his neck by the cartoon Momo
- The eight-year-old was too scared to be alone and became afraid of the dark
- She wants to raise awareness about the online ‘game’, which has spread online
- A 12-year-old girl from Argentina allegedly took her life after playing the game
A worried mother has urged parents to protect their children from the dangers of an online ‘suicide game’ after her son was told to hold a knife to his neck by a disturbing cartoon.
Lyn Dixon’s eight-year-old son is one of the latest child to become ensnared by the Momo Challenge, a game which is played on WhatsApp, Facebook, YouTube and other online platforms, and encourages children to self-harm.
The eerie game is synonymous with the face of a girl with long, black hair and big bug-like eyes staring straight through the lens.
The bizarre cartoon character Momo has beady, bug-like eyes and a scary unnatural smile
Japanese special effects firm Link Factory created the bizarre character, but said it is not involved in the online suicide game, which has sparked worldwide concern.
Ms Dixon said her young boy became frightened of the dark and was scared to be alone after Momo appeared on YouTube videos he was watching.
The mother, from Edinburgh, said the game encourages children to harm themselves.
Children are being contacted on WhatsApp and other online platforms by the cartoon Momo, who is encouraging children to self-harm
She said: ‘He showed me an image of the face on my phone and said that she had told him to go into the kitchen drawer and take out a knife and put it into his neck.
‘We’ve told him it’s a load of rubbish and there are bad people out there who do bad things but it’s frightening, really frightening.’
The challenge encourages children to take steps, progressively hurting and isolating themselves from the world, where they are eventually told to kill themselves by an anonymous controller who plots their demise.
Ms Dixon added: ‘It started with him not wanting to go upstairs on his own because it was dark up there.
‘He was terrified and wouldn’t sleep in his own bed and then we got to the bottom of it and we explained it wasn’t real.’
In Spain, people have also been warned not to play with the fictional character Momo
Recently, the evil game has been linked with the death of a 12-year-old girl from Argentina.
A French father filed a complaint with the State Department in November, after his son took his own life.
And the Belgian Public Prosecutor’s Office reported in November 2018 that a 13-year-old boy had been the victim of the ‘Momo Challenge’ and hanged himself.
Ms Dixon and her husband told their son’s school of the concerns, prompting a talk about internet safety.
But her son was scared for months after being exposed to the challenge and Lyn was worried when he told her he had seen it again recently.
After another mum shared a post on a Scottish Facebook group last week, scores of parents commented that their children had been exposed to the challenge.
Warnings about the game have been issued in Argentina, as a 12-year-old girl is said to have taken her own lifeVideo playing bottom right…Click here to expand to full page
The original poster tells how her niece was told to ‘sacrifice’ herself for her brother.
Ms Dixon added: ‘It’s a big fear, that we can’t always control what he’s exposed to on the internet.
‘You read these stories about children committing suicide and we all know how difficult life is now with the pressures on children.
‘Social media is a massive part of that. It’s horrific and we’ve got no control over it.
‘There are controls on the phone but it doesn’t go to the degree I would like it to because it’s what you can’t see that’s the worry.’
A spokesman for NSPCC Scotland said: ‘The constantly evolving digital world means a steady influx of new apps and games and can be hard for parents to keep track of.
‘That’s why it’s important for parents to talk regularly with children about these apps and games and the potential risks they can be exposed to.
‘The NSPCC publishes advice and guidance for parents on discussing online safety with their children, as well as Net Aware – the UK’s only parental guide to social media and gaming apps.’