Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Samaritans and Facebook; Self-harm and You Tube

From a report released on Sky News:

The Samaritans and Facebook are teaming up to allow users to get help for friends they think might be having serious problems. Facebook has 30 million users in the UK and anyone concerned about people struggling to cope or with possible suicidal thoughts will be able to get help through the Help Centre.

The feature enables users to report specific content, like status updates or wall posts. For instance, typing the word "worried" into the help centre search engine will bring up a list of places to find advice as well as the option to report suicidal content. Once a report about suicidal content has been processed, the distressed person will be sent a message with information on how they can contact the Samaritans if they need help.

Samaritans chief executive Catherine Johnstone said: "We want to remind people that if a friend says that life isn't worth living, they should always be taken seriously. "Facebook is a part of daily life for so many of us and we must make sure that people online have support when they need it."

And connected to this, a brief report has been published called: The Scope of Nonsuicidal Self-Injury on YouTube. Early in the report they state:

The top 100 videos analyzed were viewed over 2 million times, and most (80%) were accessible to a general audience. Viewers rated the videos positively (M _ 4.61; SD: 0.61 out of 5.0) and selected videos as a favourite over 12 000 times. The videos’ tones were largely factual or educational (53%) or melancholic (51%). Explicit imagery of self-injury was common. Specifically, 90% of non-character videos had non-suicidal self-injury photographs, whereas 28% of character videos had in-action non-suicidal self-injury. For both, cutting was the most common method. Many videos (58%) do not warn about this content. [My italics]

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