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Facebook Launches Suicide-Prevention Effort 159

Posted by timothy
from the d'ya-call-in-sick? dept.
adeelarshad82 writes "Facebook launched an initiative that gives users who have expressed suicidal thoughts the option to connect directly with a crisis counselor via Facebook chat. Facebook doesn't troll the site in search of those who might be suicidal; with 800 million users who generate billions of posts, Facebook's algorithm could easily misinterpret comments. Instead, the new initiative is dependent on people speaking up when they feel a friend might be in danger."
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Facebook Launches Suicide-Prevention Effort

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  • by ackthpt (218170) on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @02:20PM (#38357888) Homepage Journal

    It's one of those things where the massive size of Facebook can be used for real good. There are already existing hotlines but I doubt they work that well preventing suicides. While they are useful, they aren't shown to people exactly when they really need it. They might know about them, but there's no incentive to try them at those moments. So when Facebook asks it good moment, it could easily save many lifes. Since this still needs the user to agree, it can't be used for harassing people either. If it was automatic it would be stupid, but this way it's only useful.

    So overall, really good option.

    Good PR, which is something Facebook needs.

    "I'm feeling very depressed."

    "OK, let's start with why you are feeling depressed.

    "Facebook has been spying on me and selling all my personal details, while the founder will be a billionaire, all I get it tonnes of spam and annoyances.

    "um..."

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 13, 2011 @02:33PM (#38358104)

    4Chan follows suit, hires on-staff crisis counselor noted self-help author Anne Hiro

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