by William Van Ornum, Ph.D. on
Among the millions of Facebook responses generated each day, some are posted by persons who display varying degrees of suicide potential and risk. In an attempt to deal with this constructively, Facebook (according to an article in the December 10, 2001, Boston Globe) will begin a service in which Facebook users can let Facebook know if a message suggests suicide risk:
“A program launching Tuesday enables users to instantly connect with a crisis counselor from the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline through Facebook’s ‘chat’ messaging system.
“If a friend spots a suicidal thought on someone’s page, he can report it to Facebook by clicking a link next to the comment. Facebook then sends an email to the person who posted the comment encouraging that user to call the hotline or click a link for a confidential chat.”
It will be interesting to see how this new service will work out.