WATCH: Charcoal challenge takes Facebook by storm. But is it racist?

A bizarre new social media challenge, which entails participants inverting bags of charcoal over their heads, is raising eyebrows online.

No fewer than 15 videos have been uploaded to Facebook since December 31, 2018. Each video shows shirtless men (and in one instance, a fully clothed woman) inverting near-empty bags of coal over their heads, shaking about and turning their faces and heads inky black.

Most videos are set to the soundtrack of Robbie Wessel's "Bobjan" – a song about a man who believes himself to be a baboon. Some have dubbed it "The Bobjan Challenge".

Online opinions about the challenge were split.

"These okes know exactly what they're doing and their ill intentions behind it #blackface," said Facebook user Ziyaad Agherdien.

Meanwhile Tshepo Gatsheni said: "Some snowflake is gonna spin this into a black face thing..."

"Looks to me like these guys had to (SIC) much Branas (brandy) and had a little innocent fun which is quickly turning into something it wasn't intended. Laugh a little!" Lünchen Luchey Cupido commented.

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