The Momo Challenge has been occupying parents’ attention for several days now, after reports came from England that parents were seeing creepy Momo clips showing up in the middle of children’s videos on YouTube like Peppa Pig, Fortnite, and Minecraft. But no one could provide actual proof that showed the videos appearing in the middle of a children’s episode. Until today, when new videos started popping up on YouTube. But is it proof? The jury is still out about where these videos are appearing, but there’s no evidence they are appearing in any official Peppa Pig or other official videos, and there is no sign that any hackers have somehow been able to insert the Momo videos into videos already released.
The New Video Shows Momo Appearing During Peppa Pig, But It’s Unclear When It Was Uploaded
The video has been shared in numerous locations. Dustin Gale posted a video on Facebook, warning parents to continue to stay alert.
He wrote: “I’ve seen a lot of people question the whole momo thing on YouTube kid videos. Just incase you don’t believe this momo challenge in children videos, I just found this… I’m not sure what type of disgusted person thinks this is funny. #StayAlertParents Update: As parents, we must be aware of what our kids are watching. The Momo thing isn’t the issue to worry about. If you plan on allowing your kids to watch videos, please use safer alternatives. Apps like Nick JR, PBS, Disney, Netflix’s, etc. If you want to continue to use Youtube Kids, use the approved content feature. Your kids will only see content that you approved.”
And here, ZillaFullBoost on YouTube talks about the video. This might have been a clip taken from one of the other Momo videos going around.
Since it’s not known when these videos were actually uploaded, however, we can’t determine if this is proof that the stories circulating the Internet before were authentic. It is the closest to proof we have of Momo appearing during a Peppa Pig video, but this video could easily have been made after the hype started getting worldwide attention, rather than being the source.
And it should be pointed out that we don’t know the origin of these new videos. It’s likely just someone who edited Momo into a ripped Peppa pig video. There’s been no evidence of Momo somehow appearing in official Peppa Pig YouTube videos or other official videos, and there’s been no evidence that hackers can somehow infiltrate official videos. So the lesson for parents at the moment is that these videos may accidentally end up in a stream based on keyword searches before they’re taken down, but they’re not popping up in videos from official channels. As always, you should be vigilant about what your child is watching online.
The Video Is Different from the Original Momo Videos That Were Circulating This Week
In fact, judging by the videos that were circulating earlier, this does look like a newer video that might have been trying to take advantage of the hype. This video shows a computer voice speaking for Momo. The original video that was circulating was very different.
The video was circulated widely as an example of Momo appearing in kids’ YouTube videos, but it didn’t actually show what happened immediately before or after the Momo portion. Xsarah Gibson shared this video on Facebook and wrote that her son John was watching Peppa Pig on Kids YouTube when the video showed up in the middle of a Peppa video. That video was later deleted from Gibson’s Facebook page without explanation. Here’s a screenshot of what the post said before it was deleted:
It appears that more than one version of this video was circulating too, judging by this Facebook post from MKim Kim. Unfortunately, this one also didn’t actually show Momo appearing during the children’s video itself.
“Peppa Pig” is a British children’s animated series that follows the adventures of Peppa Pig, her brother George, their parents, and other animal friends like Candy Cat, Rebecca Rabbit, and Suzy Sheep. The first episode debuted in 2004 and it’s a popular children’s series. The series has also aired on The Cartoon Network and on Nick Jr. in the U.S.
Early Momo video reports were only showing up in England, but parents were concerned enough that Haslingden Primary School executives in Rossendale, in the northwest of England, issued a warning to parents that the terrifying figure was telling children to take tablets or turn the gas on in the house.
YouTube Has Said There’s No Proof of Momo
YouTube, meanwhile, has said they haven’t seen any proof of Momo.
But some people insist they’ve seen Momo on children’s videos. For example, on Reddit, one user wrote the following, saying that her niece was watching Minecraft on her mom’s cellphone and a Momo picture was in the corner of the screen. “It was just there edited onto the video. I took the cellphone from her and gave it back to my mom.” So this commenter is saying she saw it personally.
She said she’d look for the video in her mom’s YouTube history, but didn’t report back about finding it.
The Momo Challenge Tries To Coerce or Threaten Children Into Doing Harmful Actions That Could Lead to Suicide
The Momo Challenge is a suicide challenge app similar to the Blue Whale Challenge, according to authorities and media sources from around the world. The Momo Challenge typically starts out when people add or message a Momo-associated contact on their WhatsApp. Users who interact with the Momo profile are sent disturbing and graphic photos. The “game” sets objectives for the users, similar to the Blue Whale Challenge, and may coerce them into following the objectives after gaining access to personal information, The Buenos Aires Times reported.
The videos allegedly popping up on YouTube are a new “version” of the same challenge, apparently.
Becky Jackson shared a video on Facebook showing someone talking to the Momo Challenge and what the account responded. UPDATE: An alert reader informed Heavy that this video does not show Momo actually texting people, but is taken from a little-known game called Momo.Exe.
Here’s a screenshot from Momo.Exe:
Countries around the world have reported possible deaths associated with the Challenge, but these haven’t been proven. You can read about the death reports in Heavy’s story here.
So the conclusion about the most recent videos is that if Momo wasn’t actually showing up in the middle of videos before, then she is now thanks to the hype, but still not in official videos. The new videos you’ve been seeing are possibly the result of accounts taking advantage of the hype and creating their own versions with Mom spliced in. These are likely accounts that ripped Peppa Pig videos and spliced Momo in the middle, not a nefarious actor somehow hacking into legitimate videos. Others have pointed out that it appears these latest videos are on regular YouTube but not YouTube Kids, because they don’t have the menus and scrollbars that you see in a YouTube Kids app.