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Alyssa Giannone
January 12, 2018 4:34 pm

Tide Pods are no longer being used for washing clothes, and Tide isn’t happy about it. What started as an innocent meme is now a dangerous challenge — the Tide Pod Challenge — like that of the cinnamon challenge. The only difference between the two pointless internet frenzies is that nobody should ever eat laundry detergent. EVER.

The manufacturers have mostly been concerned with the colorful and bubbly nature of the pods being a problem for babies and toddlers who might think the pods are candy or a toy. But they admitted to never thinking teenagers and young adults would be the problem here.

Teens who are publicly speaking about their experience with Tide Pods have said that they knew it was a bad idea to eat them. One 19-year-old told CBS News that he did it on a dare, knew better than to do it, but did it anyway. “A lot of people were just saying how stupid I was or…why would I be willing to do that,” said Marc Pagan. “No one should be putting anything like that in their mouths, ya know?”

While it’s obviously dangerous and so stupid, it’s also one of the most popular memes of the new year. It was bound to happen: A new year, a new set of memes and weird viral happenings. But is there a line? And if this incredibly dangerous challenge isn’t it, then what will it be?

All of this is to say, please don’t eat a Tide Pod. Enjoy a meme about it here or there, but don’t ingest laundry detergent.

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