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A Viral "Magic Trick" Seen On Netflix Has People Calling It Child Abuse

David Dorbik/YouTube, Makayla Cunningham/Twitter

For plenty of people, growing up with siblings means pranks had been an integral part of their childhood.

Whether it be a whoopee cushion placed on your seat or the popular "ding-dong ditch," a little bit of mischief was simply harmless fun.

But as time passes, these gags have evolved to be more elaborate, the reactions of the intended target have grown significantly more severe - and potentially abusive.

On September 5, David Dorbik posted a video on YouTube where he and his friend pranked his buddy's younger brother, Varden, making him believe he's become invisible.

They're able to convince Varden he's instantly become invisible and can be seen breaking down.

But once Dobrik and his family tell the young boy it was just a prank, Varden's shock turns into amusement, and said he couldn't wait to "brag" about it at school.

However, Dobrik wasn't the first person to come up with this gag. In Netflix's latest show, Magic for Humans, host Justin Williams is able to convince a stranger a magic trick has made him become invisible.

With more than 5.3 million views, the majority of his audience had positive feedback towards the hijinks, and some have even tried it out themselves, including Makayla Cunningham, who played the prank on her 11-year-old sister.

"I saw a video that David Dobrik posted of him doing the same thing to another little boy and my friend sent it to me and said that we should do it to my little sister Ava," the 18-year-old told Buzzfeed News, adding that she got her entire family involved.

After her sister began to fall to the floor and cry in distress, her family quickly told her they were just playing a joke.  

"When she started to get really emotional we stopped the prank immediately, my heart dropped, and we hugged on her and told her it was OK," Cunningham told the publication.

However, some viewers took to Twitter to point out the potentially harmful repercussions this prank can have on children.  

However, Jennyfer Suero also posted a video of her performing the prank on her younger sister, but said that not everyone would be able to handle it.

"She's very smart and understands what a prank is," Suero said of her eight-year-old sister. "After the cameras were off we explained some more and even talked about it as a family."

"Age can also play a very key factor in the making of this prank," she continued, adding that you "can see how on a younger child this can cause trauma."

Child psychologist Dr. Fiona Martin from the Sydney Child Psychology Centre said not only will the prank cause "unnecessary distress," there isn't any benefit to it either.

"This seems to be causing children unnecessary distress and for what for? For what reason? Anything that creates distress in a child can’t be good for them, particularly when it’s not necessary," she told news.com.au.

"There are plenty of ways to provide a stimulating environment for your children. You could go and play sport with them, you can do creative artwork with them."

"This kind of thing is not really providing any cognitive or developmental benefit."

[H/T: Buzzfeed News, news.au.com]

Have you seen this prank happen before? Let us know what you think about it in the comments!

Maya has been working at Shared for a year. She just begrudgingly spent $200 on a gym membership. Contact her at maya@shared.com