How to adjust media recommendations on reporting suicidal behavior to new media developments

J. Malony, B. Pfuhlmann, E. Arensman, C. Coffey, R. Gusmão, V. Poštuvan, G. Scheerder, M. Sisask, C.M. van der Feltz, U. Hegerl, A. Schmidtke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


This study examines the inclusion of preventive factors and new media developments in media recommendations on suicide reporting. Of the 193 member states of the United Nations screened for media recommendations, information was available for 74 countries. Similarities and differences in their contents were analyzed by cluster analysis. Results indicate that of these 74 countries, 38% have national suicide prevention programs, 38% have media recommendations, and 25% have press codes including suicide reporting. Less than 25% of the media recommendations advise against mentioning online forums, suicide notes, pacts, clusters, hotspots, details of the person, and positive consequences. No more than 15% refer to self-help groups, fictional and online reporting. We conclude that media recommendations need to be revised by adding these preventive factors and by including sections on new media reporting.
Keywords: imitation, media recommendations, suicide, suicide attempt, suicide prevention, Werther effect
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)156-169
JournalArchives of Suicide Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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