Targeted Advertising

Item #: SCP-XXXX

Object Class: Keter

Special Containment Procedures: Hospitals and web forums are to be monitored for reports of patients experiencing hallucinations including threatening, ominous or otherwise disturbing advertisements explicitly targeted at the affected person. All confirmed stage 4 patients are to be terminated immediately, and class-D amnestics administered to those in earlier stages. Internal health organisations are to disseminate awareness campaigns discrediting SCP-XXXX manifestations as as symptoms of depression. Sufferers are to be directed to hotlines owned by the Foundation front Social Care Practitioners, in order to facilitate amnestication.

Description: SCP-XXXX refers to a hallucinogenic phenomenon causing affected individuals, designated SCP-XXXX-1, to perceive the existence of anomalous advertisements. The vector of transmission for SCP-XXXX is currently unknown, however all confirmed SCP-XXXX-1 have been between the ages of 16 and 30, and either diagnosed with or displayed behaviors associated with Major Depressive Disorder. SCP-XXXX consists of four stages, corresponding to the severity of symptoms. Time appears to be the sole determining factor in the progression of SCP-XXXX, with the recorded length of stages varying between 5 and 21 days.

First stage SCP-XXXX hallucinations are typically sporadic and difficult to distinguish from innocuous advertisements. Manifestations primarily occur online, especially on social media, and have included uncharacteristic advertisements for funeral services or coffins, and suggestions to follow "sadposting"1 accounts. Given the lack of outwardly anomalous effects, diagnosis at this stage is nearly impossible, thus no stage 1 persons have been directly observed by Foundation personnel.

Second stage SCP-XXXX hallucinations occur across a greater variety of mediums, including magazines, billboards, and posters, with far greater frequency than stage 1. While still mistakable for non-anomalous media, content is notably more disturbing, often indirectly threatening the victim. Reported apparitions have included:

  • life insurance promotions that "you'll need soon"
  • suicide prevention hotlines "if you're too pussy to do it"
  • missing person advertisements captioned "you're next".

Stage 2 SCP-XXXX-1 report increased paranoia and suicidal thoughts, however it is not known if these are anomalous compulsions or natural reactions to SCP-XXXX's effects.

Third stage SCP-XXXX hallucinations are capable of manifesting across all mediums, not limited to those where advertisements may regularly appear, with notable additions to stage 2 including television and radio. Stage 3 manifestations begin alluding to anomalous, apocalyptic events, and will often explicitly mention the affected person by name. Examples include:

  • As the stars blink out, so too shall you.
  • The final chains will hold no more.

SCP-XXXX's effects are present in almost all advertisements at this stage, and given the addition of audial hallucinations, the vast majority of SCP-XXXX cases have been detected during this period. Stage 3 SCP-XXXX-1 unanimously report feelings of impending doom and existential dread, and an increased presence of suicidal thoughts. These reports are consistent with recorded suicide trends, theorised to be as high as 60% of affected persons. SCP-XXXX-1 suicide notes2 commonly attribute their actions to an overwhelming lack of hope and optimism, and a lingering, implacable dread.

Fourth stage SCP-XXXX hallucinations

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