A recent video originating on Facebook Live depicting a man dying by suicide has made its way across popular social media platforms. We’re bringing you key facts and advice on how you can respond.

When viral events happen information can travel quickly, often before full details have emerged. You should note that details, videos and images are still being shared online, which can be distressing for many young people and others.

The Facts

  • The video was originally broadcast last week on Facebook and shows a man ending his life
  • The video shows the graphic depiction of his death and the emergency services responding. It will likely distress anyone who watches it, particularly children and young people
  • Our team have reviewed a number of viral TikTok videos discussing the man’s death, using pictures from the original video – there appears to be a number of accounts asking where they can find the video
  • We have concerns that some TikTok users are discussing how they ‘felt nothing’ after seeing the video, which may push users toward the video to compare how they felt
  • Links to the full video are being circulated via TikTok and Instagram

What you can do

  • It’s almost impossible to shield older children from news about traumatic events online, but you can show them the control they have in managing what they see and how they react

  • Older children may be particularly skilled in finding information quickly, talking to them about how graphic content can spread quickly will help them understand how viral content works
  • You should discuss ‘any stories’ a young person may have seen today – without directly naming the viral video
  • You should also talk about the importance of being sensitive online, and not sharing any graphic or distressing content for others to see
  • If a young person is aware of the video, you should explain the benefit of staying offline for a few hours until the event passes
  • Talk about what a young person would do if they needed support for their mental health

If a young person in your care has seen the video:

STOP

If a young person is accessing disturbing material you should tell them to stop what they’re doing and turn off their screen or shut down their device

THINK

They should try not to think about what they saw in great detail, and remind themselves that there is no immediate danger and they are safe

TALK

Encourage the young person to talk about what they saw with a trusted adult rather than other young people

We understand that the video may be particularly harmful to young people with existing mental health difficulties. If you are concerned that any child or young person you know may be experiencing suicidal thoughts, check out our recent blog here where we explore ways to help them.

For information on TikTok’s safety settings visit Our Safety Centre

TikTok: Digital Wellbeing

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TikTok: Report a User

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TikTok: Family Sharing

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TikTok: Block a User

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TikTok: Privacy Settings

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