NekNomination: Deadly drinking game under fire

A still from a YouTube video of a man mixing a bizarre cocktail, including cider and soup, for his NekNomination naked on top of Arthur's Seat. Picture: contributed
A still from a YouTube video of a man mixing a bizarre cocktail, including cider and soup, for his NekNomination naked on top of Arthur's Seat. Picture: contributed
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A CONTROVERSIAL drinking game which has been linked to the deaths of two young people has made its way to the Capital.

NekNomination – which has taken social media sites by storm – has been branded “irresponsible beyond belief” by alcohol campaigners.

It involves participants filming themselves downing a pint of booze in one go – before nominating two more people to do the same.

The viral drinking game has now quickly spread to Edinburgh where there were last night warnings for people not to rise to the bait and get involved.

Dr Evelyn Gillan, chief executive of Alcohol Focus Scotland, warned any type of drinking game could have “tragic consequences”.

She said: “This craze sweeping social media is of serious concern.

“It encourages people to down drinks and then dare their friends to copy the trend leading to increasingly risky and dangerous attempts to outdo one another.

“If we want to protect our young people from the dangers of drinking to such extreme excess we need to get rid of the cheap alcohol which is so widely available and heavily marketed.

“We are particularly concerned about how alcohol is promoted on social networking sites and want to see far stricter controls online.”

In one example filmed at the top of Arthur’s Seat – and uploaded to YouTube – a naked man has been filmed downing a potentially dangerous cocktail.

Thanking “Lewis” for his nomination, he said: “Here I am on the top of Arthur’s Seat, ready for my next drink.”

He then proceeds to drink a bizarre concoction of cider, South American whisky, soup, lager, guacamole, cheese, a clementine and paprika.

After drinking the pint, he reveals himself to be naked aside from a pair of trainers and socks – before nominating two other people – further fuelling the danger craze.

Another alleged shocking example at Edinburgh University saw a student gatecrash a lecture to down a pint of noxious spirits in front of shocked onlookers.

Student Nishad Sanzagiri claimed to have been in the democracy lecture when it took place.

He said: “The lecturer didn’t know what was happening.”

He said campus security had been alerted.

On Saturday, Jonny Byrne, 19, from Northern Ireland died after jumping into a river after performing a version of the stunt. His death followed that of Ross Cummins, 22. The DJ was found unconscious in a house in Dublin and died in hospital amid reports he had participated in the deadly game. NekNomination, believed to have originated in Australia, gets its name from the fact you “neck your drink, and nominate another”.

• Do you know the identity of the drinker in the video? Call us on 0131-620 8733

Risky business

NEKNOMINATION is the latest in a series of internet crazes fraught with danger.

A young man plunged to his death from an apartment balcony in Australia in 2011 while “planking” – which sees people lie face down in strange places while someone takes their picture.

In 2012, a bizarre phenomenon saw teenagers apply salt to their skin, cover it with ice and apply pressure – leaving many of them suffering from severe burns.

And this year, dozens of young people risked their lives by performing stunts in the New York City subway and uploading the footage to YouTube.

A high-school student in the United States spent four days in hospital in 2012 after attempting the “cinnamon challenge”, which saw youngsters ingest a spoonful of the spice and share the results online.