The Blue Whale Game, also known as the “Blue Whale Challenge”, is an Internet “game” that is claimed to exist in several countries. The game allegedly consists of a series of tasks assigned to players by administrators during a 50-day period, with the final challenge requiring the player to commit suicide. The term “Blue Whale” comes from the phenomenon of beached whales, which is linked to suicide.
Blue Whale began in Russia in 2013 with “F57”, one of the names of the so-called “death group” of the VKontakte social network, and allegedly caused its first suicide in 2015. Philipp Budeikin, a former psychology student who was expelled from his university, claimed that he invented the game. Budeikin stated that his purpose was to “clean” the society by pushing to suicide those he deemed as having no value.
More recently, an engineering student in Kolkata completed several levels of the “Blue Whale” suicide game and had even carved an image of a whale on his forearm with a blade. He says he was saved by his college friends, school faculty, and by the West Bengal police.
He learned about the online game from a group on WhatsApp that warned against playing it. He didn’t think it was a big deal and started playing Blue Whale Game in early August. He had reached the eighth stage, which required him to etch his arm with a whale diagram. The ninth challenge was to cut his lip, but he was rescued just in time.
The student’s friends noticed the whale etching on his arm and alerted teachers. Teachers told registrar Tapas Satapathi, who stated “I had seen some awareness campaigns on social media done by the Criminal Investigation Department or CID of the West Bengal police. So I immediately knew the gravity of the situation. I called the police for help. And the parents.”
“I have come back. I am very grateful for the intervention of my friends, teachers and the CID officer”, the engineering student said on Monday, August 28th.