Assessing the Quality of Media Reporting of Suicide Deaths in Bangladesh Against World Health Organization Guidelines

S. M.Yasir Arafat, Murad M. Khan, Thomas Niederkrotenthaler, Michiko Ueda, Gregory Armstrong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Media reporting of suicide events has thus far gone without sufficient scrutiny in Bangladesh. Aim: The purpose of this study was to assess the quality of newspaper reporting of suicides in Bangladesh against international guidelines. Methods: We used content analysis to assess the quality of suicide reporting in six daily newspapers in Bangladesh. The newspapers were hand-searched between November 2016 and April 2017 and 327 articles reporting on suicide deaths were retrieved. Results: The mean number of suicide articles per day per newspaper was 0.3 (range across newspapers 0.11-0.70) and the mean length was 11.3 sentences. Harmful reporting practices were very common (for example, a detailed suicide method was reported in 75.5% of articles) while almost no potentially helpful reporting practices were observed (for example, no articles gave contact details for a suicide support service). Limitations: The findings are limited to print mass media. Conclusions: We observed that explicit and simplistic reports of suicide deaths were frequently observed in newspapers in Bangladesh. Attempts should be made to understand the perspectives of media professionals in relation to suicide reporting, and to devise strategies to boost the positive contribution that media can make to suicide prevention in this context.

Original languageEnglish
JournalCrisis
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Jan 1

Fingerprint

Bangladesh
Suicide
Newspapers
Guidelines
Mass Media

Keywords

  • Bangladesh
  • guidelines
  • media
  • suicide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this

Assessing the Quality of Media Reporting of Suicide Deaths in Bangladesh Against World Health Organization Guidelines. / Arafat, S. M.Yasir; Khan, Murad M.; Niederkrotenthaler, Thomas; Ueda, Michiko; Armstrong, Gregory.

In: Crisis, 01.01.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Arafat, S. M.Yasir ; Khan, Murad M. ; Niederkrotenthaler, Thomas ; Ueda, Michiko ; Armstrong, Gregory. / Assessing the Quality of Media Reporting of Suicide Deaths in Bangladesh Against World Health Organization Guidelines. In: Crisis. 2019.
@article{21fbe90ee8b94a2eaadd746c61236b9b,
title = "Assessing the Quality of Media Reporting of Suicide Deaths in Bangladesh Against World Health Organization Guidelines",
abstract = "Background: Media reporting of suicide events has thus far gone without sufficient scrutiny in Bangladesh. Aim: The purpose of this study was to assess the quality of newspaper reporting of suicides in Bangladesh against international guidelines. Methods: We used content analysis to assess the quality of suicide reporting in six daily newspapers in Bangladesh. The newspapers were hand-searched between November 2016 and April 2017 and 327 articles reporting on suicide deaths were retrieved. Results: The mean number of suicide articles per day per newspaper was 0.3 (range across newspapers 0.11-0.70) and the mean length was 11.3 sentences. Harmful reporting practices were very common (for example, a detailed suicide method was reported in 75.5{\%} of articles) while almost no potentially helpful reporting practices were observed (for example, no articles gave contact details for a suicide support service). Limitations: The findings are limited to print mass media. Conclusions: We observed that explicit and simplistic reports of suicide deaths were frequently observed in newspapers in Bangladesh. Attempts should be made to understand the perspectives of media professionals in relation to suicide reporting, and to devise strategies to boost the positive contribution that media can make to suicide prevention in this context.",
keywords = "Bangladesh, guidelines, media, suicide",
author = "Arafat, {S. M.Yasir} and Khan, {Murad M.} and Thomas Niederkrotenthaler and Michiko Ueda and Gregory Armstrong",
year = "2019",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1027/0227-5910/a000603",
language = "English",
journal = "Crisis",
issn = "0227-5910",
publisher = "Hogrefe Publishing",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Assessing the Quality of Media Reporting of Suicide Deaths in Bangladesh Against World Health Organization Guidelines

AU - Arafat, S. M.Yasir

AU - Khan, Murad M.

AU - Niederkrotenthaler, Thomas

AU - Ueda, Michiko

AU - Armstrong, Gregory

PY - 2019/1/1

Y1 - 2019/1/1

N2 - Background: Media reporting of suicide events has thus far gone without sufficient scrutiny in Bangladesh. Aim: The purpose of this study was to assess the quality of newspaper reporting of suicides in Bangladesh against international guidelines. Methods: We used content analysis to assess the quality of suicide reporting in six daily newspapers in Bangladesh. The newspapers were hand-searched between November 2016 and April 2017 and 327 articles reporting on suicide deaths were retrieved. Results: The mean number of suicide articles per day per newspaper was 0.3 (range across newspapers 0.11-0.70) and the mean length was 11.3 sentences. Harmful reporting practices were very common (for example, a detailed suicide method was reported in 75.5% of articles) while almost no potentially helpful reporting practices were observed (for example, no articles gave contact details for a suicide support service). Limitations: The findings are limited to print mass media. Conclusions: We observed that explicit and simplistic reports of suicide deaths were frequently observed in newspapers in Bangladesh. Attempts should be made to understand the perspectives of media professionals in relation to suicide reporting, and to devise strategies to boost the positive contribution that media can make to suicide prevention in this context.

AB - Background: Media reporting of suicide events has thus far gone without sufficient scrutiny in Bangladesh. Aim: The purpose of this study was to assess the quality of newspaper reporting of suicides in Bangladesh against international guidelines. Methods: We used content analysis to assess the quality of suicide reporting in six daily newspapers in Bangladesh. The newspapers were hand-searched between November 2016 and April 2017 and 327 articles reporting on suicide deaths were retrieved. Results: The mean number of suicide articles per day per newspaper was 0.3 (range across newspapers 0.11-0.70) and the mean length was 11.3 sentences. Harmful reporting practices were very common (for example, a detailed suicide method was reported in 75.5% of articles) while almost no potentially helpful reporting practices were observed (for example, no articles gave contact details for a suicide support service). Limitations: The findings are limited to print mass media. Conclusions: We observed that explicit and simplistic reports of suicide deaths were frequently observed in newspapers in Bangladesh. Attempts should be made to understand the perspectives of media professionals in relation to suicide reporting, and to devise strategies to boost the positive contribution that media can make to suicide prevention in this context.

KW - Bangladesh

KW - guidelines

KW - media

KW - suicide

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85066450369&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85066450369&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1027/0227-5910/a000603

DO - 10.1027/0227-5910/a000603

M3 - Article

JO - Crisis

JF - Crisis

SN - 0227-5910

ER -