Texting and driving campaign from Responsible Young Drivers (Belgium)Enlarge Photo
It seems as if every other day, there's another story about distracted driving: who's guilty, who's trying to end it, and new, unexpected dangers. But of all the news, nothing gets as much attention -- or causes as big of a stir -- as texting and driving.
The problem isn't limited exclusively to young people, but they're most likely to do it. Countless government agencies, peer groups -- even Oprah -- have tried to combat the problem, but nothing seems to be working.
As Mashable points out, one advocacy group in Belgium decided to take matters into its own hands with a slightly different approach.
We've all heard stories about parents who find their kids smoking, then force them to smoke an entire pack of cigarettes in one sitting. That's essentially what Responsible Young Drivers has done, but with a somewhat more menacing twist.
Rather than asking Belgian parents to force their kids to text and drive, RYD assigned that duty to one of the scariest, most intimidating people in a teenager's life: the driving instructor.
The set-up was simple: a driving instructor told test-takers that new regulations required them to prove that they could text and drive. Some students balked in disbelief, but official-looking documents quickly shut them up.
The results were captured on video*. Have a look:
Would this work in the U.S.? Would it be enough to make young people think twice about texting and driving? Drop us a line, or leave a note in the comments below.
* Note: this clip has been up less than two weeks, and it's already received more than a million views on YouTube. Not too shabby.