Pennsylvania Mother Sues TikTok After Her Daughter Died Trying To Perform 'Blackout Challenge'

Pennsylvania Mother Sues TikTok After Her Daughter Died Trying To Perform ‘Blackout Challenge’

A Pennsylvania mother has filed a lawsuit against the social media platform TikTok after her adolescent daughter died trying to perform a trend called the “blackout challenge.”

In December 2021, Tawainna Anderson’s 10-year-old daughter Nylah had to be rushed to the hospital after attempting a trending social media challenge. As part of the challenge, a person is encouraged to choke themselves until they pass out. After staying in the hospital for several days, Nylah died while in the intensive care unit.

Anderson says her daughter found out about the challenge on TikTok’s “For you” page in her lawsuit against the company. The legal document was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, CBS News reports.

In the legal document, Anderson said the social media platform’s “algorithm determined that the deadly Blackout Challenge was well-tailored and likely to be of interest to 10-year-old Nylah Anderson, and she died as a result.” The child, who spoke three languages and is described by her mother as being “happy, healthy and incredibly intelligent, is in the age range of children who are more susceptible to being negatively affected by social media, Anderson states in the suit.

It added that TikTok’s algorithm allegedly generates content based on a user’s age, preying “upon vulnerable users, such as children, who are thrust into a never-ending dopamine feedback loop which creates addiction and a compelling urge to engage further in the TikTok Defendants’ app.”

Anderson says her daughter died due to TikTok’s “corrosive marketing practices.

“I want to hold this company accountable,” Anderson said, CBS News reports. “It is time that these dangerous challenges come to an end, that other families don’t experience the heartbreak we live every day.”

Tawainna Anderson
Nylah Anderson, 10.

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