Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Bedok suicides and social psychology

As covered in Malcolm Gladwell book " The tipping point" in the
chapter of "suicide,smoking and unsticky cigarette",the study by David
Phillips shows that a highly publicized suicide tend to spark off
other suicides.

This is the scenario that we see as from one suicide in bedok
reservoir growing to five in 5 months. 

In accordance with robert cialdini theory of influence, this should
be a Reinforcement of the social norm of consensus.  As a ethical
influencer, perhaps we can highlight real positive statistics of how
many people who call SOS hotline give up their intentions to commit
suicide.  We should not fabricate the data, but we should uncover such
positive social norms.

A more paternalistic society will ensure that such positive news is
published side by side in the newspapers next to the bedok suicides.
However, it is tough as News is just bad News.
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