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Facebook to roll out Artificial Intelligence tools for preventing and curbing suicides

The social media giant, Facebook, in a bid to promote proactive detection of suicides amongst its users has commenced rolling out the much needed A.I-based suicide prevention tool on its social media site for multiple global regions. The tool had already been announced for the US region, in March this year. Now, the company is finally rolling out the service on its platform for several regions across the globe.

Facebook states that they would be rolling out artificial intelligence outside the US to help identify when someone might be expressing thoughts of suicide, including on Facebook Live. This will eventually be available worldwide, except the EU. The approach uses pattern recognition technology to help identify posts and live streams as likely to be expressing thoughts of suicide. The team is positive about increasing accuracy over time and avoiding false positives before team reviews.

To get people help as quickly as possible Facebook claims to have enhanced tools so that reviewers can quickly identify which points within a video receive increased levels of comments, reactions and reports from people on Facebook. Tools like these help reviewers understand whether someone may be in distress and get them help. The pattern recognition aids in responding to the reports faster.

Other similar measures from the company include- a dedicated 24x7 team (in select regions), automation for quick access of first responders’ contact information, community operations team that includes a dedicated group of specialists who have specific training in suicide and self harm and use of artificial intelligence to prioritize the order in which the team reviews reported posts, videos and live streams.

As a user, if you find someone posting something that makes you concerned about their well-being, you can reach out to them directly or report the post to the company. Facebook provides people with a number of support options, such as the option to reach out to a friend and even offer suggested text templates. Users can further contact a help line and offer other tips and resources for people to help themselves in that moment.

The tech-giant has said it will continue working closely with suicide prevention experts to understand other ways to use this technology to help provide support faster. The initiative sure has good intentions at its heart with a potential to save thousands of lives, however privacy concerns still loom large. The company quotes that the feature is the part of their ongoing effort to help build a safe community on and off Facebook.

Source: FacebookNewsroom

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