Category Archives: SPEECH

’13 Reasons Why’ faces backlash from suicide prevention advocacy group

A suicide prevention advocacy group is speaking out about the new Netflix original series “13 Reasons Why,” saying that the show — a teen drama centered on a high school student who kills herself — could do “more harm than any good.”

The show, based on a young adult novel of the same name and co-produced by Selena Gomez, revolves around 17-year-old Hannah Baker, who takes her own life and leaves behind audio recordings for 13 people who she says were part of shy she killed herself.

“There is a great concern that I have … that young people are going to overidentify with Hannah in the series and we actually may see more suicides as a result of this television series,” said Dan Reidenberg, the executive director for Suicide Awareness Voices of Education, a nonprofit group with the mission of suicide prevention.

“I’ve heard from others that are really concerned because its so sensational and so graphic that they’re worried about the copycat effect of suicide,” he added.

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Facebook takes steps to stop suicides on Live

SAN FRANCISCO — Faced with an alarming phenomenon, people taking their own lives on its live-streaming service, Facebook is stepping up efforts to prevent suicides.

On Wednesday, Facebook announced it will integrate real-time suicide prevention tools into Facebook Live. It also said it will offer live-chat support from crisis support organizations such as the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and the Crisis Text Line through Facebook Messenger, and make it easier to report suicide or self-injury. The most novel of the new tools: Facebook is testing artificial intelligence to identify warning signs of self-harm and suicide in Facebook posts and comments.

The goal, says Facebook, to connect people in distress with people who can help.

In January, a 14-year-old girl hung herself in her Florida foster home and a 33-year-old aspiring actor shot himself in a car on a Los Angeles street, both on Facebook Live. A young Turkish man who had broken up with his girlfriend told viewers before committing suicide on Facebook Live in October: “No one believed when I said will kill myself. So watch this.”

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Report: Russian teenagers committing suicide in ‘bizarre social media’ game (Warning – Fake News)

(What’s another fake news story in this era? I include this article because a local contact reported to a news group I belong to that it’s a fabrication, invented by Russian authorities and repeated by State-controlled media in May of 2016.  The goal is apparently to generate fear of the Internet that leads to support for increased governmental control and censorship.  But there is no statistical support for the allegations and Russian authorities have only arrested one individual, who has not gone to trial because of insufficient evidence.  But, in case this Russian meme heads your way, you will know it’s bogus. — Mike Tully)

Police in Russia are looking into a flurry of teenage suicide attempts amid panic that teens may have been manipulated by sinister social media groups, reports say.

Local media has cited findings that suggest such attempts are linked to a dark online phenomenon called “Blue Whale” — a game that allegedly asks teens to complete tasks that inflict self harm, like cutting themselves and carving symbols into their skin.

The tasks are said to lead to the final level on day 50, in which teens involved in the game are asked to kill themselves.

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Some Teachers, Principals And Students Condemn Trump Transgender Policy

Some students, principals, parents and attorneys have condemned the Trump administration’s decision to remove some federal protections for transgender students.

Those protections had been issued by President Obama, who cited the federal Title IX law, and instructed public schools last year to allow transgender students to use restrooms and locker rooms that match their gender identities.

But the Departments of Education and Justice on Tuesday reversed that guidance, allowing state and local officials to pass rules that discriminate on the basis of gender identity without risk of losing federal funds, as we reported.

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Make parents liable for cyberbullying, says anti-bullying research centre director (Ireland)

Parents should be held liable for their children’s behaviour online, the director of an anti-bullying research centre has said, writes Claire O’Sullivan.

Ahead of Safer Internet Day tomorrow , the Director of the National Anti-Bullying Research and Resource Centre at Dublin City University said if parents were held legally responsible for their child’s cyberbullying, there would be greater numbers of parents familiarising themselves with the social media their children are using.

Dr James O’Higgins-Norman said research shows primary school children, as young as 9 or 10, are being given smartphones as Christmas presents by parents, yet many of these parents are not educating their offspring about safe usage.

“Our advice for parents is to stay current with what apps your children are using and how they work. If you don’t, it is like a parent taking a child to a playground and then heading off to the pub themselves,” he said.

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