Is Social Media Killing our Kids?

Right now, there is concern by parents in the UK that social media is responsible for the recent suicides of dozens of young teens in that country . Discussion is ramping up amongst lawmakers about how best to legislate social media companies to remove and ban all content that may promote self-harm. Legislators are as concerned as parents. There is hope they can work with social media companies to find a solution to this endemic problem that still respects freedom of the internet, but where sufficient controls can be put in place to effectively guard it.

Drawing on my former experience working in privacy, I’m not sure if this is wishful thinking on the part of lawmakers or not, but as a mom whose daughter died by suicide in 2005 after viewing content on a self-harm site that offered methods on how to complete suicide, I can relate to the fears parents face today, where almost anything can be readily accessed online. I can also appreciate the difficulty experts may be facing establishing law to ban this content, yet still protect the rights of individuals to access information.

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