Is the Momo challenge a hoax? Police and schools warned to stop promoting ‘suicide game’

1 March 2019, 09:59 | Updated: 1 March 2019, 13:15

Is the Momo challenge a hoax?
Is the Momo challenge a hoax? Picture: SG
Alice Dear

By Alice Dear

The Momo challenge has been the latest social media story to grip the UK, as parents fear their children could fall victim to the ‘suicide game’.

High coverage of the Momo challenge has risked doing more harm than good, it has been warned.

Momo is a terrifying phantom figure who is said to use WhatsApp messages to tell children to carry out violent acts, including suicide.

Read more: Mum reveals how she beat Momo Challenge after her 5-year-old threatened to stab pals

While there have reportedly been some suicides linked to the Momo challenge, many believe it to be a hoax.

This week, the Momo game was discussed in parliament as people raised questions over what was to be done about the character causing fear among parents and children.

Anne Longfield, the children’s commissioner for England, told the Guardian: “When trying to highlight risks to children, particularly in the online arena, it’s important to step back and assess what the real risk is.

“Sometimes, however well-meaning, warning of the dangers of something that you haven’t fully looked into amplifies its impact on children beyond the actual fact.”

Conservative MP Douglas Ross called for a debate in the House Of Commons over the ‘hoax’.

This comes after Ross was contacted by many concerned parents.

Ross has said it is now down to the media to make it clear that Momo is a hoax.

“We need to make sure all the facts are out there”, he said.

READ MORE: Everything you need to know about the Momo Challenge

READ MORE: Five year old girl shaves her hair off because of Momo game