Molly Russell, a secondary school principal, said it was “nearly impossible” to track the risks social media poses to students in a study of teenage deaths.
North London The coroner’s court has heard of “complete and horrific shock” at Molly’s school after 14-year-old Molly committed suicide in November 2017. Molly, from Harrow, north-west London, committed suicide after viewing a huge amount of her online content related to her suicide. She has depression, self-harm, and anxiety.
Sue Maguire, principal of Hatch End High School in Harrow, was asked how difficult it was for her school to stay on top of dangerous social media content.
“There is a level where I would say it is almost impossible to track social media, but we have to try and respond to the information we receive,” she said.
Explaining the school’s “shock” over Molly’s death, Maguire added that teachers had long warned students about the “dangers of social media.”
she said: However, there is no stance that it should not be used. But it brings challenges to school that weren’t there 10 years ago, or 15 years before her. ”
Oliver Saunders KC, who represents the Russell family, asked Maguire if the school was aware of suicidal and self-harm related content available to students on sites such as Instagram.
“At the time, we were shocked when we saw it,” Maguire said. You would be wrong to say that.”
Rebecca Cozens, the deputy principal and the school’s chief of protection, told the inquest that it was “deep” after the young man fell down a “rabbit hole” on social media.
Asked by Sanders if he was aware of the type of material Molly was involved in, Cozens said: You’re down that rabbit hole, it’s a deep one.
On Monday, senior management at Instagram owner Meta said: acknowledge and apologize Molly viewed content that violated the platform’s content guidelines. Elizabeth Lagone, Head of Health and Wellbeing Policy at Meta, said:
An executive at Pinterest, another platform Molly frequently interacted with last week before her death, said: Said the site was not safe when teenagers use it.
Senior coroner Andrew Walker told the Russell family that he would make a decision by the end of the week.
In the UK, you can contact the youth suicide charity Papyrus on 0800 068 4141 or email email@example.com. In the UK and Ireland, Samaritans can be reached toll-free on 116 123 or emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org or jo. @samaritans.ie. In the US, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available for support at 800-273-8255 or chat. You can also contact an emergency text line counselor by texting HOME at 741741. In Australia, the lifeline for crisis support services is 13 11 14. Other international helplines are befrienders.org
https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2022/sep/28/molly-russell-inquest-social-media-headteacher-london Molly Russell inquest: Teacher says it’s ‘nearly impossible’ to trace social media | UK News