Teenagers are always looking for the perfect reason to skip school and the pandemic has given them the ultimate excuse—COVID.
TikTok has been getting flooded with videos racking up millions of views on how to manipulate lateral flow COVID tests (LFT) to show positive results. Who has been sharing these tricks and tips? British teens.
Maybe this is why over 400,000 students have been recorded to be absent from school and universities in the UK...
To trick the device into giving them positive results, teenagers have been putting a range of different things on their LFTs, including lemon juice, apple sauce, Coca-Cola, vinegar, hand sanitiser, ketchup, and kiwi fruits.
The General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, Geoff Barton said that the percentage of students that were misusing these tests were marginal, but he has warned parents to be extra careful. He told i News:
We would urge parents to ensure that tests are not being misused, and we would suggest to pupils who are interested in chemical reactions that the best place to learn about them is in chemistry lessons in school.
TikTok takes action
A whole community of school-bunking children had surfaced on TikTok under the hashtag #fakecovidtest with videos that had over 6.5 million views. There was even a dedicated account called @fakecovidtests that was opened for these hacks, which had more than 20,000 followers. The hashtag and the account have since been taken down by TikTok.
The content sharing platform has been cracking down on misinformation around COVID and has been removing videos that have been spreading fake and dangerous COVID content. They said:
Our community guidelines make clear that we remove content which includes misleading information that causes harm, including medical misinformation related to Covid-19, and anti-vaccine disinformation more broadly.
Since the start of the pandemic, we have worked to provide our community with access to trusted information, and through our partnership with Team Halo, scientists from all over the world have shared how vaccinations are created and tested for safety.