A student at the University of Central Lancashire has turned online sensation NekNominate into Donate Nominate.Advertisement
Jessica Isherwood, who is in the final year of her History degree, expressed her disgust with the binge-drinking craze after watching several viral videos. She then became the latest in a host of people who have turned it into something positive.
Donate Nominate instead encourages people to donate any amount of money to a chosen charity, then nominate and unlimited amount of friends to do the same with a charity of their choice.
She said: “It would be amazing if it takes off. I really hope it does.”
At the time of writing, her idea has spread to various parts of Great Britain and as far as Ireland.
Neknominate, which appears with various different spellings, is a trend where somebody has to consume a drink quickly (or “neck it”) and then nominate their friends to do the same. It has quickly resulted in a series of controversies as people attempt to out-do each other – the worst of which include being linked to deaths.
Jessica said: “When I first saw one of them I just thought it was absolutely pointless, then they gradually got worse, and I was just thinking how powerful social media really is.
“Each person that does one of those videos is promoting irresponsible drinking, and it must be awful for people who are struggling with alcoholism; whether it be them or a loved one, to see such idiotic behaviour going viral.
“Most importantly I was disgusted how, given that social media is so powerful, people can’t put it to better use.”
Her idea has received support from many students who are helping her to promote the idea. However, that support isn’t entirely universal around the Preston campus.
UCLan Students’ Union President Ben Latham said: “In regards to Donate Nominate, I would err caution on this despite its clearly well-meaning intentions. Although Jess clearly states in her original status that there is no time limit to it, it is still going to put pressure on individuals, and via a public platform.”
He also offered a different way of looking at the potential drawbacks of the Neknominate trend.
“Whatever reason people take part in Neknominate, they have clearly failed to consider the possible consequences; I’m not referring to death here, but more the addition of such videos to your digital footprint, which could be dug up by potential employers (or others) in the future.”