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Why the #trashtag challenge should be your next travelgram

From the Mannequin Challenge, in which groups of people remained motionless in videos, to the Kiki Challenge, in which people danced to ‘In My Feelings’ by Drake, social media challenges seem to exist purely to inspire hashtags and harmless fun. But the latest challenge to take over is hoping to go beyond hashtags to create a powerful movement offline.

Trashtag is a social media challenge encouraging a global clean-up. Image by Getty

Trashtag is the latest viral challenge to gain momentum on social media. It’s an anti-litter awareness initiative that’s encouraging a worldwide litter clean-up. Users pick a destination that’s been tarnished by litter, clean it up, post before and after pictures on social media and then nominate another person to take part in the challenge. Thousands of volunteers have eagerly stepped up, cleaning beaches, parks, roadsides and other public spaces. Organisations and schools are getting involved and people are even taking up the challenge on vacation.

People are even taking up the challenge on vacation. Image by Getty

The trashtag has been around since 2015 when UCO, an outdoor clothing company, created the hashtag to urge people to pick up after themselves while out in the wilderness. It grew legs last weekend when a Reddit user suggested it would be a worthwhile challenge “to make the world a better place.”

Trashtag is a social media challenge encouraging a global clean-up. Image by Frank and Helena/Getty

From the 1950s to today, 8.3 billion metric tons of plastic have been produced, with around half of it made since 2004. And since plastic does not naturally degrade, billions of tons are sitting in landfills, floating in the oceans or piling up on city streets. Like the Ice Bucket Challenge that raised US$115 million for the ALS Association, Trashtag could make a positive difference but it can only be truly effective if it continues even when the hashtags disappear.

The post Why the #trashtag challenge should be your next travelgram appeared first on Lonely Planet Travel News.
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