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Man commits suicide online

Published tisdag 12 oktober 2010 kl 15.30

The Swedish media have broken their usual policy of not reporting on suicide cases Tuesday, following the death of a 21 year old south of Stockholm, live on the internet.

The man wrote in an online forum that he was to take his own life, before setting up a webcam, for anyone to see. Other forum users urged him on, thinking it was a fake, before it was too late. The last images from the camera showed police taking down the man's body, unable to revive him.

Questions are now being raised about the impact of the internet on vulnerable individuals, and what impact the often brutal atmosphere on the web can have. Stockholm's Karolinska Institute has its own National Prevention of Suicide and Mental Ill-Health unit, researcher Gergö Hadlaczky told Radio Sweden that internet users should take any suicide threats seriously.

"This was a very tragic event, that probably could have been avoided", he says.

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