The next time you see a stranger lying down on the ground motionless in public, there may be a relatively harmless reason. In fact, they’re probably participating in the latest internet craze, “facedown”.
The idea is simple. Pick a public place, the more random the better, lie down horizontally with your hands by your side, straight as you can and get someone to snap a photo. Upload to Facebook or Twitter, and it becomes a part of the hottest social networking phenomenon since sleeveface (augmenting a vinyl record cover with your own body – see sleeveface.com).
Facedown seems to have captivated the Irish internet-using public in the past week but it has been happening for a few years. Memorable facedowns include a young man lying in the cheese counter in Tesco, an ambitious Limerick resident balanced precariously on a large road sign and others on top of goalposts, the pavement outside a fast food restaurant, a Gardaí car, atop a garage roof, an airport runway and a bridge.
It’s not strictly an Irish interest as Amy Mihyang and Lynn and Michael Chealander have been doing them around the world since 2006 and posting the results on their site facedowns.wordpress.com. The original idea was to mess with the regular concept of the tourist photo (much like the garden gnome travelling around the world – http://bit.ly/gnomesnaps). The blog features photos of the trio in facedown mode in New Zealand, at Obama’s inauguration, India, at the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea and confusing the Times Square naked cowboy in New York. All in all over 24 countries so far are featured.
Now, the idea has taken off here so if you’re out tonight and see someone lying across the bar, the stairs, a path or balancing on a bollard, then it’s probably a result of facedown time.
Five best resources for finding facedowns:
1.The original – facedowns.wordpress.com
2.Live Twitter search – http://bit.ly/facetweet
3.The best of Irish – http://bit.ly/bestfd
4.The Facebook Group – http://bit.ly/facedowngroup
5.The blog – http://extremefacedown.blogspot.com