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Social Networks, Suicide and Statistics

mikejuk (1801200) writes | more than 2 years ago

Social Networks 1

mikejuk (1801200) writes "The data that is available in social networks is often used to detect the opinion of the crowd — but can it reveal the state of mind of the individual. New research suggests that some simple but non-obvious characteristics of social network use are related to suicide.
Data mining is usually about determining things of economic advantage, but in this case, suicide we have a personal loss and an economic one. A new paper by a group of Japanese researchers, Naoki Masuda, Issei Kurahashi and Hiroko Onari, claims to have found ways of detecting suicidal tendencies — or at least the tendency to think about suicide, so-called "suicide ideation".
The study used the Japanese social network mixi, which has over 27 million members and allows users to join any of over 4.5 million topic groups — some focusing on the subject of suicide. This provided a study and control group to compare. The most interesting finding is that while users in the suicide group had lots of friends they didn't have as many transitive relationships i.e. where A friends B friends C friends A. This suggests that it isn't lack of friends but a lack of tight social groupings that is a factor.
The same technique could be used to investigate similar problems such as depression and alcohol abuse."

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No Thanks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40565151)

It is bad enough that I am seriously depressed and think of killing myself to the point of now having several mapped out strategies. I don't need other people knowing that I am this badly depressed. I don't need others to know that I am a step away from having a death experience.

I, for one, welcome the Oversoul in it's first incarnation.

It's a nice thought though. Donations to Beyond Blue are likely to do more in the long run.

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