Neknomination: Twitter and Facebook should carry warnings over drinking game, councils warn
The drinking game has been linked to several deaths
Twitter, Facebook and other social networking sites should introduce warnings over the drinking game Neknominate, which has been linked to several deaths, councils in England and Wales have said.
The Local Government Association (LGA), which represents almost 400 councils, said prominent messages were needed on the websites to warn about the possible dangers of the craze.
The call comes after the death of another young British man Bradley Eames, who filmed himself downing two pints of gin mixed with teabags. He complained of feeling ill shortly after and died four days later.
The Neknominate phenomenon involves people filming themselves drinking copious amounts of alcohol quickly, nominating someone to continue the game, and posting the video on social media sites.
The LGA said some schools had requested warning notices about Neknominate to be put on noticeboards and read out at assemblies.
Councils are now publishing warnings about alcohol through internet safety campaigns that provide links for parents, carers and young people.
On Wednesday, the industry-funded charity Drinkaware called on parents to take a tough stance against the game over fears that young teenagers feel pressured to take part.
Katie Hall, chair of the LGA's community wellbeing board, described Neknominate as an "utterly reckless and totally irresponsible" game which had tragically claimed lives. "More should be done to highlight the dangers and persuade people not to participate," she said.
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"We believe social media operators have a responsibility to provide health warnings to user groups and individuals.
"The LGA is looking for these corporations to show leadership and not ignore what is happening on their sites.
"We are urging Facebook and Twitter executives to sit down with us and discuss a way forward which tackles this issue head-on."
The LGA said Boston Borough Council in Lincolnshire is encouraging those people nominated to continue the drinking game to contact their community safety team.
Sevenoaks District Council in Kent is launching an internet safety campaign on Neknominate, while Worcestershire County Council has called for people not to join in.
Additional reporting by Press Association
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