Netflix original 13 Reasons Why debuted on Netflix in March. The series has sparked a massive outrage. The Google searches for specific methods of suicide have increased post-13 Reasons Why, a research has revealed.
The series revolves around the suicide fo high school student named Hannah Baker. The show was narrated in flashbacks.
In the 13-episode series, the graphic footage of Hannah's suicide is apparently triggering suicidal thoughts among youngsters, as per the research. The series set a record for the most tweeted show in 2017 as it was mentioned more than 11 million times within the three weeks of its March release.
According to a new study by JAMA Internal Medicine, the internet searches on suicide have increased significantly within the three weeks of its release. "Our analyses suggest 13 Reasons Why, in its present form, has both increased suicidal awareness while unintentionally increasing suicidal ideation," the authors wrote.
"The most rising queries focused on suicidal ideation. For instance, 'how to commit suicide', 'commit suicide' and 'how to kill yourself' were all significantly higher."
Following the hype, researchers at San Diego State University decided to compare the numbers of US-based Google searches regarding suicide before and after the Netflix show.
John Ayers, a professor of public health at the university said the show must be taken down. "Past studies have validated that Internet searches mirror real-world suicide rates, so suicide rates have likely gone up as a result of this program," Ayers told The Washington Post. "For me, as a data-driven public health scientist, I see this troubling data as a strong call to action. The show must be taken down."
In response, Netflix came out with a statement: "We always believed this show would increase discussion around this tough subject matter.
"This is an interesting quasi-experimental study that confirms this. We are looking forward to more research and taking everything we learn to heart as we prepare for Season 2."
Various schools in the United States issued warnings to the parents about the show's content and its possible effect on the youngsters.