There Is No Evidence Online That Teenagers Are Actually Playing The “Deadly Knockout Game”

A collection of people may have been attacked, but to call this a fad sweeping America’s teens might be a reach.

1. CBS New York reported last month that three teenagers were arrested for beating a homeless man to death.

ID: 1993501

2. CBS said local police believed the three teenagers were playing a game called “Knockout” or “One Hitter Quitter,” where teenagers randomly attack strangers on the street.

ID: 1993689

3. Last week, the same New York CBS affiliate reported that a 19-year-old Jewish man from Brooklyn was attacked by black teenagers playing “Knock Out The Jew,” a variation of The Knockout Game.

ID: 1993786

4. A local rabbi, Yaacov Behrman, told CBS that black teenagers were going around the area punching Jewish people.

ID: 1993921

5. Three days ago, Raw Story picked up local news reports claiming The Knockout Game was spreading west, writing that Knockout videos were being shared online amongst teenagers, increasing the game’s popularity.

ID: 1994237

6. The problem with that theory is there’s almost no evidence to support that teenagers are uploading Knockout videos. YouTube is full of people reacting to the original news reports.

ID: 1993614

7. The Knockout Game is already the name of a game teenagers play and upload to YouTube where they try to make themselves faint.

ID: 1994362

8. Vine is similarly devoid of the alleged Knockout videos being uploaded by teenagers.

ID: 1994263

9. The majority of content under Knockout-related tags are boxing clips, fake fight skits, and videos of teenagers sleeping.

ID: 1994275

10. The search results for One Hitter Quitter are also devoid of fight videos. The majority of them show teenagers smoking weed.

ID: 1994280

11. The most popular Facebook page fitting any of the CBS’ original search criteria for Knockout-related content is this “One Hitter Quitter” Facebook page with only 169 likes.

ID: 1994301

12. On Instagram #KnockoutGame is a tag that refers to a One Direction fan game.

ID: 1994489

13. And lastly, on World Star Hip Hop, Knockout videos are equally hard to find. The search terms once again bring up boxing clips and the occasional street fight between two active participants.

ID: 1994391

14. So, while people may have unfortunately been attacked, there’s almost no evidence that teenagers across the country are trading Knockout videos online or participating in some kind of random street violence fad.

ID: 1994702

Check out more articles on!

Ryan Broderick is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.
Contact Ryan Broderick at

More News

More News

Now Buzzing