Journal article

Suicide and the media

J Pirkis

Psychiatry | Published : 2009

Abstract

Around 100 studies have been conducted to examine the 'Werther effect' - the phenomenon whereby there is an increased rate of completed or attempted suicide following the depiction of an individual's suicide in the media. These 'media influence studies' provide strong evidence for the existence of the Werther effect in the news media, and equivocal evidence for its existence in the entertainment media. Having established this, there is now a need to complement these media influence studies with inter-related studies that draw on approaches from a range of disciplines, particularly that of communication. The studies can be thought of as investigating the full spectrum of news and entertainmen..

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