Is This Young Boy Really Getting Tattooed in a Live Video?

Is This Young Boy Really Getting Tattooed in a Live Video?

A live video aired on Facebook last week sparked an outrage for depicting what appeared to be a child getting tattooed by two artists.

You've heard of kids following in the footsteps of their tattoo artist parents — starting 'em young — but it's a whole other story when the switch is flipped and it's the kids going under the needle. As nasty as that may sound, it does happen in the case of negligent parents and scratchers. But what we have here is what appears to be the work of two professional tattoo artists on a child's body. Is it legit? Let's find out.

In a Facebook live video aired on September 25, a Vietnamese tattoo artist named Phan Văn Tài was shown tattooing the body of a young boy who couldn't have been more than seven years old. The stencil of the linework revealed a massive oni mask. Another tattoo artist Phan was also shown ‘tattooing’ with him.

The live video reached 2.4M views as of now, with 70k reactions, 24k shares, and 1.6k comments, sparking a variety of responses from shocked Westerners questioning the practice to peers joking about it in the comments. 

However, many quickly pointed out the glaring inconsistencies of the video, taking note of the absence of the redness of the skin and the lack of strong reaction from the child, considering the tattoo artists touched on sensitive parts like the ribs and the chest. Some also noticed the size of the tattoo needle which looked too wide and peculiar to be an actual needle. While this seems to be the more plausible story behind the shocking video, it didn't stop irate comments from pouring in.

Some even concluded that it may be part of a different tradition in the Vietnamese culture and called for respect. But for the most part, opinions were halved. After all, the live video ran for a total of 35 minutes and 18 seconds, which may equal to a typical linework session.

The video showed the child lying calmly while watching videos on an Android tablet as two tattoo artists worked on his torso. The child may occasionally flinch or let out an ‘ow,’ but never the expected cry for help from most people who usually go through this. You may watch the whole video here.

Disclaimer: This viral video is most likely an elaborate publicity stunt. 

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