The fall and winter months are typically when people do more crafts. We all love checking out social media like Youtube, TikTok and so on for inspiration and instructions on how to do it yourself. There is one craft hack, though, which should be totally avoided because it has killed dozens of people, if not more, in the US alone. Those who survive are maimed for life.

Fractal or Lichtenberg burning, also sometimes known as wood fracking, uses high voltage electricity - much higher than normal mains electricity -  to create a lightning or Lichtenberg effect on wood. Cool to see but very dangerous as the slightest contact with the equipment will deliver a potentially fatal current through the body. One report cites the fatality rate at 71% - much higher than the 5-15% fatality rate of other high voltage incidents.

Ann Reardon, an Australian food scientist and Youtuber of the highly recommended How to Cook That, shares both cooking and debunking cooking and craft videos ( like those about 5-min Crafts - here ,here and especially here).  Some of the crafts you see on those slick videos, which so many share on Facebook etc, range from will not work to potentially harmful to very dangerous. 

Ann recently debunked fractal burning in this video in an effort to spread the message and to save lives. Read the comments too.  If you want to jump to just the fractal burning part, click here.  But I suggest you watch this earlier part too as Ann talks about other potentially dangerous hacks.


The irony of all ironies, her excellent video was actually banned by Youtube for violating their harmful and dangerous policies!  It was reinstated after several days and after appeal. Despite this, videos on how to do fractal burning, are still being shared on social media. The uneven moderation speaks volumes on how social media companies are failing to adequately police their sites. No wonder we live in a world filled with so much misinformation. 

Another example which recently surfaced on TikTok was a challenge to cook food with Nyquil, an over the counter medication to relieve cough and cold symptoms. This prompted the FDA to release a warning :
Boiling a medication can make it much more concentrated and change its properties in other ways. Even if you don't eat the chicken, inhaling the medication's vapors while cooking could cause high levels of the drugs to enter your body. It could also hurt your lungs.
The problem is many just don't think. Social media invites quick reactions - clicking that share button or trying it - without any critical thinking. Just because something seems popular doesn’t mean it’s safe, accurate or true.

Before You Go:


This blog may contain affiliate links. I do receive a small fee for any products purchased through affiliate links. This goes towards the support of this blog and to provide resource information to readers. The opinions expressed are solely my own. They would be the same whether or not I receive any compensation. 
Original Post by THE BEADING GEM