Like teens eating Tide pods, and random clowns popping up all over the U.S. before it, the Momo Challenge is a hoax preying upon the bored and gullible. But that doesn't mean it won't/hasn't induced some hysteria before it will disappear and quickly be forgotten.
For those unaware (or, who just have lives) the challenge involved a creepy big-eyed bird woman telling kids to pull off increasingly dangerous stunts potentially leading to violent attacks or suicide because if you can't trust this f*cking thing then who can you trust?:
While this hasn't led to any notable incidents, according to law enforcement, it has nonetheless resulted in police forces and school administrations warning people via rudimentary internet safety advice.
Speaking of school administrations being overly cautious, Florida’s Palm Beach County School District made a decision to temporarily block YouTube access for their 193,000 students in an effort to prevent exposure to Momo. While you might say, as you surely have so often, "Well that's just Florida," similar preventive measures have been enacted in the Stockton, California Lincoln Unified School District, as well as the blockage of Momo YouTube searches in Arkansas’ Jacksonville North Pulaski School District.
Stockton did acknowledge that the thing's a dumb hoax but, screw it, these days you can't be too careful. They didn't say it exactly like that but it's what they appear to have meant.
“We have many safeguards in place to protect our students,” said a statement published in Record. “You may have heard about a threatening hoax hitting the internet media outlets. LUSD has the proper device-monitoring systems in place to protect students on school devices. [...] While there is currently no evidence that this particular challenge has resulted in direct harm to children, we do think it is important to understand and to be aware of current social media challenges, as well as how to best approach these types of challenges with your children.”
As for how YouTube is handling this, they sent out a statement telling those in panic to just chill a little. "We want to clear something up regarding the Momo Challenge: We've seen no recent evidence of videos promoting the Momo Challenge on YouTube," they tweeted out. "If you see videos including harmful or dangerous challenges on YouTube, we encourage you to flag them to us immediately."
Also, the weird statue in the embedded pic above has been destroyed.