Clowning around campus

[media-credit id=157 align=”alignnone” width=”225″]clown[/media-credit]

Social media has brought “killer clowns” into a completely new light after multiple clowns have reportedly been spotted taunting everyday people.
Clowns have been seen walking in empty parking lots, in the woods, cornfields and even running out in front of cars. Witnesses have shared videos and photos of these sightings on social media.
Some clowns have made threats to the public and schools, while others seem to be roaming with no apparent destination in mind. Perhaps their only goal is to end up viral online or on the news.
Whether they’re in it for laughs or if there’s some real intent behind the costume, it is causing mass amounts of attention online and causing fear amongst the public.
UW Oshkosh senior Nicole Gammon said she isn’t quite sure if she thinks these clowns are a real threat to communities.
“I think that’s the scary part,” Gammon said. “Because how do you know? What if one is a threat and actually does something, and [another] is just being weird?”
These clowns are getting a massive amount of attention on social media and online, and all of this attention may be causing more and more sightings across the U.S.
With clown spottings getting retweeted left and right and ending up on the news, it’s no wonder why they’re continuing to pop up around the country.
“Social media makes [the concern] worse,” Gammon said. “If somebody wasn’t going to do it and they think other people are getting all the attention for it [then they might do it, too].”
Gammon said all of the retweets and shares online of these sightings might be what is causing copycats.
“I think people just want attention for it,” Gammon said. “The media promotes it. The news is talking about it. It’s not just Facebook and twitter. It’s the actual news.”
University Police Department Captain Chris Tarmann said they’ve been told of one instance about a clown on campus.
“We’ve received one anonymous tip about a clown on campus who wasn’t reported to be doing anything illegal,” Tarmann said. “We’ve heard rumor that students were taking selfies with this clown.”
While a selfie with a pop-up clown is sure to get a lot of attention online, it is just another reason for others to follow suit. If someone sees how much attention one person gets from dressing up and walking around, there isn’t much stopping them from doing the same.
If the online shares and the discussions on the news were to end, then the creepy clown fad would surely end in a matter of days.
The more shares a random clown in Texas gets, or the more fear people express online, the more copycats the U.S. is going to see.
Social media is the biggest influence on this situation and the less attention these clowns get the sooner their appearances will come to an abrupt halt.