Privacy Concerning the Silhouette Challenge on TikTok


Courtesy of Unsplash

Sarah Larson, Art and Community Writer

With the rising popularity of TikTok since it first started to gain notoriety in 2018, it is not surprising that many different creators on the platform have come up with many fun and entertaining challenges. Some of the safer trends that have shown up in the past include the flip the switch challenge where there would be two people in a room recording in front of a mirror, and then the lights would turn off, and when they came back on, the two people will have switched places but would be wearing the other’s clothes. The other trend was the wipe-it-down challenge mainly used by cosplayers where they would appear in normal clothes in front of a mirror, and when they would wipe down across their body in the mirror, they would change into a costume or different outfit. However, not all the trends on TikTok have been harmless. Some have caused people physical harm or dared them to risky things just for views. One trend that appeared harmless involved two people and one of the participants would use their mouth as a bowl and the other person would eat cereal out of their mouth. While this is very disgusting, this fad could be dangerous because it can cause choking. Another hazardous trend on TikTok was one called “the bright eye challenge”. This is where people would make a mixture of hand sanitizer and bleach, put it in a bag, and then they would place that bag on their eyes in hopes it would change their natural eye color. 

This brings us to today with the most recent concerning challenge called the silhouette challenge. This challenge is similar to the wipe-it-down and flipaswitch challenges where you would just simply change your appearance. What users do is they first appear in baggy clothes and look like they had just woken up until the beat drops, and they appear as a silhouette in front of red light doing a pose either nude or in lingerie. Because you can only see the black silhouette of the person, you would think that this trend is not dangerous to the person posting the video. However, that is not the case because It has recently been discovered that people have been removing the Snapchat filter used to make the video and turning up the light to look and what the person is wearingIn fact, a subreddit had shown up called r/SilhouetteUnfilitered, where people would post these videos after having removed the Snapchat filter and turning up the brightness. Luckily Reddit took down this subreddit because it violated their rules against involuntary pornography. However, this didn’t mean these videos were completely safe because there are multiple videos on YouTube teaching people how to remove the filter and turn up the brightness to take a peek, with each video having view counts in the thousands. A photographer on TikTok had explained this issue to other bodypositive creators participating in this trend, urging them to be conscious of what they wear when they make these with others also urging that they delete these videos. 


Sarah Larson is a Dakota Student Art and Community Writer. She can be reached at [email protected]