Thirty families have accused technology giants of abetting their children’s suicides in the wake of the death of 14-year-old Molly Russell, as the health secretary told social media sites to take responsibility for their effect on young lives.
In an interview with The Sunday Times, Molly’s father, Ian, criticised the online scrapbook site Pinterest, as well as Instagram, for hosting disturbing content that he believes played a part in his daughter’s death.
“The more I looked [into Molly’s online accounts], the more there was that chill horror that I was getting a glimpse into something that had such profound effects on my lovely daughter,” he said. “Pinterest has a huge amount to answer for.”
Papyrus, a charity that works to prevent youth suicides, said it had been contacted by 30 families in the past week. Parents said they suspected social media had played a part in their children’s suicides.
A Sunday Times investigation found numerous graphic images of self-harm on Pinterest that could be viewed by children as young as 13.
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Awful. Can’t even imagine what is must be like being a teenager today bombarded with social media and impossible standards
Revealed: how Big Tech pushes teens to suicidehttps://t.co/RNo10XC41C
— Joumanna Bercetche (@CNBCJou) January 27, 2019