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Facebook's A.I. Will Be Quick In Spotting Potential Suicide Victims

By Cameron , Mar 02, 2017 03:00 AM EST
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Following a series of suicides live streamed via Facebook Live, the company has decided to bring its artificial intelligence expertise in order to prevent further suicide cases. According to Facebook, the A.I. will be more accurate in detecting potential suicides cases by scanning posts.

Facebook Brings A.I. To The Table

In an interview, Facebook Product Manager Vanessa Callison-Burchold claimed that the A.I is actually more accurate compared to the reports that the company receives from people which are flagged as suicide and self-injury. Facebook's A.I. will be capable of identifying posts that indicates suicide or harmful thoughts.

When it scans a post along with its associated comments, it will compare it to other similar posts that need intervention. If the post does so indicate a potential case of suicide, the A.I. will directly alert members of the company's community team.

Facebook Offers Another Feature To Help The Victims

In addition to the A.I. monitoring for indication of self-harm, Facebook will also be making a number of suicide-prevention organizations available for chat via messenger. In the said feature, there will be suicide-prevention resources for the Facebook Live broadcasters that are at risk.

Continue Broadcasting Suicides, Is It A Good Idea?

Back in January, a 14-year old girl from Miami committed suicide from the bathroom of her Miami Gardens foster home. After the incident, Christen Chen, a spokesperson for Facebook mentioned that Facebook is giving its users access to report live streams being broadcasted that violates the Community standards, and if the reported broadcast is proven to be in violation, Facebook will interrupt the live stream.

But this time, Facebook is taking an opposite approach. Apparently, the company will continue to maintain the live broadcast of someone who's been reported at risk for self-harm. In Facebook's defense, allowing the broadcast to continue may give an opportunity for people (family and friends) to reach out and provide support for the person they're seeing which in a way makes the Facebook Live a lifeline.

So, is it a good idea? Though quite noble and could greatly increase the chances of saving the victims, the internet is a place filled with people that can be so harsh at times.

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