Using social media to help save lives


Cyber bullying. Fear of missing out. Social media addiction. Envy of perfectly curated feeds. There’s plenty of hand-wringing over the potential negative impacts that social media can have on mental health. So it’s great to share a story about using the power of social media for good.

Last week, Instagram announced a new feature that allows you to send an anonymous message if you see someone hinting at self-harm, suicide, or an eating disorder. The user will get a message with links to mental health resources based on their location. The same support message will occur if a user searches for certain hashtags.

And remember:  You don’t have to wait for a new feature to launch to reach out if you’re worried about a friend. And if you need to talk to someone, the National Suicide Prevention Line is there 24/7.

About the author:
Tara Saylor is a communications manager by day, grad student by night and curious all the time. She is also a web nerd and recovering copywriter. Tara focuses on the channels that enable communication and using metrics to improve communication effectiveness. She tweets about communication and combines as @AnokheeTara.