Social media is throwing a little too more weight into the life-threatening decision of young people drowning in voyeurism.
An unnamed 16-year-old teenage girl was found dead after starting an Instagram poll asking users to vote for life or death. The girl was known to have a history of battling with depression.
“Really important, help me choose: D/L.” she posted, only for her to take her life later when she jumped off the roof of a building in the East Malaysia state of Sarawak.
Her sudden demise caught the eye of a few politicians pointing that the incident should not be treated as an isolated case, triggering high profile reaction across Malaysia.
Member of Parliament and lawyer Ramkarpal Singh said in a Facebook post that her death served as a reminder of the need to take [mental health] seriously.
“Would the girl still be alive today if the majority of netizens on her Instagram account discouraged her from taking her own life? Did the encouragement of those netizens actually influence her decision to take her own life?” he questioned.
According to District police chief Aidil Bolhassan, 69% of respondents at the time of her death had selected “D”. Although Instagram maintains that the poll ended after 24 hours with 88% of her followers choosing “L”, Mr Bolhassan said the results may have changed during the 24-hour period that the poll was active as more people learned of her fate.
Instagram’s head of communications in the Asia-Pacific, sent condolences to the teenager’s family and encouraged users to contact emergency services and file a report if they see any behaviour that puts people’s safety at risk