Have you ever prank someone for fun? Or even film as a video to put on social media platforms and share with everyone? Pranks has become one of the most popular activates on social media. People use hidden cameras to record themselves screwing other people in a plethora of ways. Prank videos are always fun to watch. However, since prank videos get popular on social media sites, pranksters have gone too far on pranks.
The term prank is described as ‘a mischievous trick’ or ‘a practical joke’, which originates from the 16 century. The prank is “practical” because it is in the sense that they are enacted rather than being told. The trickster arranges things so that the target is led to have a false idea bout what is currently going on. The targets are often live people and eventually find out that they have been made fool of.
Pranks were only popular on traditional media back in the day. Candid Camera is one of the prank videos producers. It started in 1948 and is famous for their tag line “ Smile, you’re on ‘Candid Camera!’”
Here is one of their old prank video:
From Candid Camera, we can see that pranks are not a new thing. Nowadays, prank videos become more popular because of the convenient of sharing on social media. The spreadability of social media facilitates the prank culture, as audiences can easily share their favourite prank videos. In addition to this, the rise of new edia has also facilitate the prank culture, as people not only can just sit there and watch the media; but also able to participate in it through filming videos and upload on new media.
Here is one of the most popular prank videos on YouTube from PrankvsPrank, which this girl faked a cheating to fool her boyfriend when he came home. This video has more than 47,000,000 views on YouTube; the channel also has more than 10,000,000 subscribers.
In this video, the girlfriend used a disembodied mannequin head as a tool for this harmless joke. On the other hand, another similar prank video that done by SanFrezo almost killed a person. After catching the girlfriend “cheated”, the boyfriend pulled out a gun and tried to kill a guy that his girlfriend “cheated” with. Even there is no one actually harmed at the end, it still has gone too far.
This is just the tip of an iceberg. You might think that prank never killed people and it is just a harmless joke. But in fact, it has actually killed people. In Kentucky, a 16 years old boy accidentally killed himself when he was hanging himself to prank his younger sister for the Halloween. Obviously, he was not intended to kill himself but he never thought the prank wasn’t safe enough for him, which triggered the tragedy.
Recently, the killer clown prank spreads across the world through social media, which prankster dresses up as a killer clown to terrorise people in the public. This prank raised a lot of concerns as it spreads so fast across the world and people get frighten from the prank. The spreadability of social media has definitely facilitated this joke. People also participate in filming themselves wearing the killer clown custom, instead of just being the audiences, which helps to spread out this prank. Maybe you think wearing killer clown custom is just a harmless joke but a lot of people criticise about this prank.
Pranks were supposed to be a harmless joke, which should be funny, as laughter is the best medicine. It is essential that we should consider how others might react to the prank. Humiliation is, by definition, degradation leading to disgrace and shame. The thick-skinned will hardly be disturbed, while the sensitive can be extremely traumatised or feel bullied. Not to mention that some people could also injure from pranks. Halloween is just around the corner, it is time to rethink about pranks and stop the tragedies caused by the pranks that you might think it is hilarious.