Samaritans Radar app will identify potential suicides on Twitter

A new application Samaritans Radar will help to identify potential suicides on Twitter. The application has been launched by the Samaritans charity.

The new app will notify Twitter users if people they follow on the site appear to be suicidal. Samaritans Radar uses an algorithm to identify key words and phrases which indicate distress. They include “tired of being alone”, “hate myself”, “depressed”, “help me” and “need someone to talk to.” Users who have signed up for the scheme will receive an email alert if someone they follow tweets these statements.

The app asks whether the tweets are cause for concern. However it does not yet identify sarcasm, according to the website.

Samaritans Radar was created by digital agency Jam and uses Twitter’s API. It is primarily aimed at 18-35 year olds.

“They are the most active age group across social platforms and spend an average of just over three hours daily on social networks,” said Patricia Cartes, global head of trust and safety outreach at Twitter.

Samaritans said it was looking at extending the service to other social media networks in the future.


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