Thursday, December 15, 2011
A new Facebook feature that lets users report “suicidal content” to website administrators is raising big brother concerns, but experts and educators say it could be a powerful tool to combat suicides.
“Anything like that would help,” said Bridgewater/Raynham Superintendent Jacqueline Forbes, whose district is reeling over the suicides last week of two recent graduates of Bridgewater-Raynham Regional High School. “It’s a good, positive outreach to people in need.”
The feature launched this week allows Facebook users to report content characterized as a cry for help. Once Facebook’s “safety team” is alerted, it immediately sends a private message to the user in distress, providing a link to a live chat with a mental health professional and phone numbers for suicide prevention hotlines.
Facebook suicide intervention tool response mixed