The concept of challenging your friends is not a new one, however it may look different from how we first remember it. Whether it was facing off in Dance Dance Revolution in the 90’s or getting the highest score on your Tamagotchi in the 2000’s, the desire to prove that we can do something that everyone else is doing, and do it better, has been a driver for generations. While in its early days the goal of a challenge may have been to win, Instagram has given the concept new terms as it draws together an entire community of users posting the same message.
Social media has made it possible for ideas and “stunts” to go viral on a global scale without filters.
The raw nature of some of these challenges has been both good and bad. The current trending black and white #ChallengeAccepted encourages calling out and supporting female empowerment and the strong women in your life. The 2014 ALS ice bucket challenge raised over $115M from 2.5M people. Yet, the 2018 Tide Pod challenge was directly responsible for dozens of hospitalizations and the recall of a product.
Now, with new platforms like Instagram and TikTok focused on real time engagement, challenges are making a comeback. Lockdown orders and quarantines have amplified these new trends most likely because of the time people are spending on socials.
Here are our top picks for this week:
The Push-up Challenge
The pushup challenge focused on keeping people active during quarantine. It gained attention after Justin Bieber and Russel Westbrook took part and it consists of “see 10, do 10.” The idea is to get tagged, post a story on IG and tag your friends. After this, Snoop Dogg and Whiz Khalifa created the “Kush Up Challenge”, putting a marijuana spin on the trending hashtag that has been used over 15,000 times on IG alone.
The patience challenge initially started on TikTok and Instagram with pets. The trend went viral as users tested their animals by leaving a bone/food in front of them and asking them to wait to eat it while the owner went to another room. The challenge shifted to testing a child's ability to wait to eat candy. Kylie Jenner and Lauren Akins were two of many celebrities that took part.
Flip the Switch Challenge
This will definitely go down as a defining challenge of 2020. It started on TikTok and is all about a comical transition.
The challenge that was inspired by Drake’s song Nonstop, consists of having two people in a bathroom, one of them turning the lights off, and when they flip back on the two people have switched clothes. Celebrities such as Jennifer Lopez and A-Rod, EmRata and TheFatJewish, all took part adding their own personal creativity and touch.