The rise and rise of the Ice Bucket Challenge

Global Trends10 September 20143.2k

It seems like everyone in the world has done the Ice Bucket Challenge. 

George W. Bush, Michael Jordan and Stephen Hawking are among the people who have gotten involved in the cultural zeitgeist, which involves throwing a bucket of ice cold water over yourself and nominating up to three people to follow in your shoes.

There's no denying the fact it has become a global phenomenon and the ALS Association, which helps people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), has received over $100 million in donations through the initiative. 

On top of this, more than £6 million has been raised for the Motor Neurone Disease Association – the group responsible for helping those with the condition in the UK.

The Ice Bucket Challenge goes viral

Between June 1st and August 13th, more than 1.2 million videos of people carrying out the challenge were shared on Facebook, while the phenomenon was mentioned over 2.2 million times on Twitter between July 29th and August 1st, according to figures from the New York Times.

So why has it been so popular? These statistics underline how the challenge has been able to transcend both language and country borders, as all people need to take part in it are a bucket, water and a video player. Indeed, the universal nature of the challenge means someone from China can follow an Englishman's video and vice versa.

Aside from the fact it is fun, benefits a good cause and was marketed during the warmer summer months, it is the number of celebrity advocates that have truly cemented its position as the new Harlem Shake. 

Once the world's top golfers, politicians and actors are encouraging people to get onboard with a trend, you know there's no stopping it. 

Indian people have gone one step further and created their own version called the Rice Bucket Challenge, which involves giving a needy person a bucket of rice. This movement's Facebook page described it as an "Indian version for Indian needs".

What do you think will be the next big craze?


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