"I was playing a prank, a simple practical joke, and this guy didn't take it very well and shot me."
A YouTube prankster — who likes to harass minimum wage workers at fast food restaurants, pretend to vomit on Uber drivers, and anger strangers for no apparent reason — has been shot in the abdomen at a Virginia mall, local CBS News affiliate WUSA reports, after a stranger didn't take kindly to his latest prank.
Worst of all, the 21-year-old Tanner Cook told the station that he's ready to get right back to harassing the public after his recovery. Which, while we admire his chutzpah, might not be quite the right takeaway.
"I was playing a prank, a simple practical joke, and this guy didn't take it very well and shot me," Cook told WUSA.
Cook's father later told Insider that Cook's prank involved Google translate, with the YouTuber having "his phone in his face and he didn't appreciate it."
Look, nobody deserves to get shot. But if your whole bit is just antagonizing people in public — and then one of them literally shoots you — maybe it's time to reevaluate your life choices.
Out of Control
The trend of young folks playing cruel pranks on strangers for the sake of online notoriety has escalated over the years, with a 19-year-old YouTuber being charged with making "terroristic threats" after a knife prank backfired at an airport earlier this year.
YouTube celebrity David Dobrik has also made a name for himself by profiting off of the trauma of other people. Last year, fellow YouTuber Jeff Wittek sued Dobrik following a life-threatening stunt involving an excavator.
Bottom line? Profiting off of the misery of strangers is never okay.
In short, the sooner online pranking culture goes away, the better — though nobody should resort to physical violence to make that happen.
We wish him a speedy recovery.
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