A 31-year old Taiwanese single woman commited suicide while talking to her friends on Facebook. Check out the CBS news article on the event. See, Taiwan woman commits suicide while on Facebook.
Her family had no idea she spent her last moments on Facebook discussing her suicide while inhaling toxic carbon monoxide fumes indoors from a charcoal grill meant to be used outdoors. Is the problem social isolation in social media? Or no way to find out her address or phone number in time to summon help? Could the police have traced her address through her IP number and got to her in time if someone called?
The ironic shocker is that nobody she was chatting with on Facebook contacted anyone who could have helped her while she was breathing in the fatal fumes that ended her existence. Why didn't anyone try to stop her by contacting an ambulance or other emergency service? She spent time talking to her friends.
Could it be too surreal because it happened online where so many people watch staged videos that might emulate anything odd?
A woman in Taiwan killed herself by inhaling poisonous fumes while chatting with friends on Facebook and none of them alerted authorities, police said Tuesday.
The woman named in the CBS news article killed herself on her 31st birthday, March 18, 2012 and family members who reported her suicide were unaware of the Facebook conversations that accompanied it, a Taipei police officer said, according to the CBS news article.
Even though the young woman chatted with nine friends for 67 minutes about her gradual asphyxiation, didn't anyone take her serious? One picture uploaded from her mobile phone depicts a charcoal barbecue burning next to two stuffed animals. Another shows the room filled with fumes.
Apparently, the news article did report that one friend begged her to douse the fatal indoor charcoal fumes. She didn't listen. People in this situation need more help than being told what to do. What should friends have done?
A few friends on Facebook did ask her to stop. Some even tried to track her location. But the one action they could have done was to call the police who might have arrived in time to save the woman. If you see someone in a similar situation, just call the police who can be in someone's home in minutes. Don't waste time chatting with someone in that frame of mind.
Instead of calling the police the Facebook friends read the woman's post that the suicide victim had just posted another picture while she admitted she wasy dying.
Is this addiction to Facebook by someone desperately calling out for help? The only action one can take is to call the police. Who else would get there in time unless the friends lived next door?
Her boyfriend found her body the next morning and alerted her family. The fact is nobody on Facebook called the police even though she lived long enough breathing the toxic fumes from a charcoal-burning grill that's supposed to be used outdoors, to talk for more than an hour. The Facebook episode, according to the article lasted 67 minutes.
The problem with social media is that friends may not know where you are located. How do you find the home address of a Facebook friend to give to the police?
How do you find a phone number if the city is not listed on Facebook or someone puts up another location to maintain privacy? How lonely can social media get? That's one more reason for Social media to keep a balance between privacy of address and who to contact in an emergency.
What's the right action to take if you see this happening in social media? Who do you call when your friends have no listing, city, or other information listed? Social media needs to protect the privacy of friends online, who mostly are acquaintances. Perhaps it's time to have family members on social media also listed for emergency contacts.
On the other hand, many people just want their privacy. What do you think of how people behave on social media and why they feel the need to spend time on social media even if it's their substitution for close friendships nearby?