19 November 2016


High school students from the United States are believed to have started a viral internet challenge that is taking the sporting world by storm.
The “Mannequin Challenge” has quickly surged in popularity, with sporting royalty like LeBron James and our own Tim Cahill having a go.

So what is it? The premise is very simple. You get a bunch of people to stand completely still (like mannequins) and then have someone walk around filming all the poses. It is sometimes, but not always, ended or accompanied by the song Black Beatles by hip hop duo Rae Sremmurd featuring Gucci Mane. Challengers then post a video to social media with the hashtag #MannequinChallenge. Unlike the “Ice Bucket Challenge”, this isn’t for any particular charitable cause. It seems to be just for fun and for challenging other people.

It is thought to have started in late October with a group of high school students from Jacksonville, Florida. And it quickly spread to some of sport’s biggest names. NBA champions the Cleveland Cavaliers, captained by LeBron James, took the challenge in the White House with First Lady Michelle Obama. As the challenge has become more and more popular, it has even started creeping onto the sporting field. The challenge is becoming popular out of the sporting arena as well. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton did the Mannequin Challenge the night before her ill-fated election day. She was joined by her staff and rocker Jon Bon Jovi for the challenge on her jet.

When the “Running Man Challenge” went viral in May, a social media expert explained to The New Daily how these online phenomena occurred. RMIT University social media guru Associate Professor Dr Con Stavros said viral videos – like the Mannequin and Running Man challenges – were usually “fun, straightforward and quirky”. “I think when things like this show a different side of athletes and people, it creates a lot of interest,” he said. “Sport is such a great vehicle on social media because of how much interest players and athletes generate. “The challenge element also helps. It adds a connection to the next person and the challenge is done in a very public manner.” Dr Stavros also said at the time that finding the “magic formula” of what makes something go viral was the Holy Grail for many professionals. “It is a question that marketers are always trying to understand and there’s no magic formula,” he added. “I think in many things that do get popular, though, there’s an element of fun to them.”
Take the world by storm: be a sudden success
Have a go: try
Bunch of people: a lot of people (un montón de gente)
Still: motionless
For fun: purely for enjoyment
Ill-fated: doomed, having an unhappy ending
Straightforward: simple, uncomplicated, honest
Quirky: odd, peculiar, strange

Another day, another challenge — the newest craze to hit the internet is the Mannequin Challenge.
While there have been numerous “challenges” that call for their players to do some outrageous things (pour a bucket of ice over their heads, eat a Carolina Reaper pepper, etc), this one is quite simple.
The viral challenge requires participants to stay absolutely still while holding a pose — like, say, a mannequin — usually over Rae Sremmurd’s “Black Beatles” ft. Gucci Mane. Meanwhile someone else weaves in and out of the group capturing the dramatic poses.
It started in late October with a group of high schoolers believed to be from Edward H. White High School in Jacksonville, Florida.
The poses are generally supposed to depict some type of scene that tells a bigger story. Obviously, the more interesting the illustration is the better.
The importance of Rae Sremmurd’s song to the Mannequin Challenge isn’t explicitly explained, but it’s the song that was used in the original video and naturally people followed suit.
Also, the more people involved, the better the execution of the challenge seemingly ends up being.
As the challenge has picked up more speed, social media has been saturated with participants in this latest trend, from Destiny’s Child to the New York Giants football team.

craze: Fad, fashion
outrageous: shocking, remarkable
require: demand, order
still: motionless
weave: combine into a connected whole, interlace
depict: represent
to follow suit: do the same, copy
seemingly: apparently 
end up: result

Ona carbonell's mannequin challenge

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