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Article: The foxconn suicides and their media prominence: is the werther effect applicable in china?

TitleThe foxconn suicides and their media prominence: is the werther effect applicable in china?
Authors
Issue Date2011
PublisherBioMed Central Ltd. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.biomedcentral.com/bmcpublichealth/
Citation
BMC public health, 2011, v. 11, article no. 841 How to Cite?
AbstractBACKGROUND: Media reporting of suicide and its relationship with actual suicide has rarely been investigated in Mainland China. The 'Foxconn suicides' is a description referring to a string of suicides/attempts during 2010, all of which were related to a giant electrical manufacturing company, Foxconn. This study aimed to examine the clustering and copycat effects of the Foxconn suicides, and to investigate temporal patterns in how they were reported by the media in Mainland China, Hong Kong (HK), and Taiwan (TW). METHODS: Relevant articles were collected from representative newspapers published in three big cities in Mainland China (Beijing (BJ), Shenzhen (SZ), and Guangzhou (GZ)), HK, and TW, together with searching intensity data on the topic conducted using the Baidu search engine in Mainland China. The temporal clustering effects of the Foxconn suicides and their media prominence were assessed using the Kolmogorov-Smirnov test. The media reports of the Foxconn suicides' temporal patterns were explored using a nonparametric curve estimation method (that is, the local linear method). The potential mutual interactions between the Foxconn suicides and their media prominence were also examined, using logistic and Poisson regression methods. RESULTS: The results support a temporal clustering effect for the Foxconn suicides. The BJ-based newspapers' reporting and the occurrence of a Foxconn suicide/attempt are each found to be associated with an elevated chance of a further Foxconn suicide 3 days later. The occurrence of a Foxconn suicide also immediately influenced the intensity of both Baidu searching and newspaper reporting. Regional diversity in suicide reporting tempo-patterns within Mainland China, and similarities between HK and TW, are also demonstrated. CONCLUSIONS: The Foxconn suicides were temporally clustered. Their occurrences were influenced by the reporting of BJ-based newspapers, and contagion within the company itself. Further suicide research and prevention work in China should consider its special media environment.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/172270
ISSN
2015 Impact Factor: 2.209
2015 SCImago Journal Rankings: 1.372
PubMed Central ID
ISI Accession Number ID
References

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorCheng, Qen_US
dc.contributor.authorChen, Fen_US
dc.contributor.authorYip, PSFen_US
dc.date.accessioned2012-10-30T06:21:05Z-
dc.date.available2012-10-30T06:21:05Z-
dc.date.issued2011en_US
dc.identifier.citationBMC public health, 2011, v. 11, article no. 841en_US
dc.identifier.issn1471-2458en_US
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/172270-
dc.description.abstractBACKGROUND: Media reporting of suicide and its relationship with actual suicide has rarely been investigated in Mainland China. The 'Foxconn suicides' is a description referring to a string of suicides/attempts during 2010, all of which were related to a giant electrical manufacturing company, Foxconn. This study aimed to examine the clustering and copycat effects of the Foxconn suicides, and to investigate temporal patterns in how they were reported by the media in Mainland China, Hong Kong (HK), and Taiwan (TW). METHODS: Relevant articles were collected from representative newspapers published in three big cities in Mainland China (Beijing (BJ), Shenzhen (SZ), and Guangzhou (GZ)), HK, and TW, together with searching intensity data on the topic conducted using the Baidu search engine in Mainland China. The temporal clustering effects of the Foxconn suicides and their media prominence were assessed using the Kolmogorov-Smirnov test. The media reports of the Foxconn suicides' temporal patterns were explored using a nonparametric curve estimation method (that is, the local linear method). The potential mutual interactions between the Foxconn suicides and their media prominence were also examined, using logistic and Poisson regression methods. RESULTS: The results support a temporal clustering effect for the Foxconn suicides. The BJ-based newspapers' reporting and the occurrence of a Foxconn suicide/attempt are each found to be associated with an elevated chance of a further Foxconn suicide 3 days later. The occurrence of a Foxconn suicide also immediately influenced the intensity of both Baidu searching and newspaper reporting. Regional diversity in suicide reporting tempo-patterns within Mainland China, and similarities between HK and TW, are also demonstrated. CONCLUSIONS: The Foxconn suicides were temporally clustered. Their occurrences were influenced by the reporting of BJ-based newspapers, and contagion within the company itself. Further suicide research and prevention work in China should consider its special media environment.en_US
dc.languageengen_US
dc.publisherBioMed Central Ltd. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.biomedcentral.com/bmcpublichealth/en_US
dc.relation.ispartofBMC public healthen_US
dc.rightsBMC public health. Copyright © BioMed Central Ltd.-
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License-
dc.subject.meshChina - epidemiology-
dc.subject.meshImitative Behavior-
dc.subject.meshNewspapers - statistics and numerical data-
dc.subject.meshPower Plants - statistics and numerical data-
dc.subject.meshSuicide - psychology - statistics and numerical data-
dc.titleThe foxconn suicides and their media prominence: is the werther effect applicable in china?en_US
dc.typeArticleen_US
dc.identifier.emailCheng, Q: chengqj@hku.hken_US
dc.identifier.emailYip, PSF: sfpyip@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.authorityYip, PSF=rp00596en_US
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_versionen_US
dc.identifier.doi10.1186/1471-2458-11-841en_US
dc.identifier.pmid22044598-
dc.identifier.pmcidPMC3233608-
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-80055107853en_US
dc.identifier.hkuros211184-
dc.relation.referenceshttp://www.scopus.com/mlt/select.url?eid=2-s2.0-80055107853&selection=ref&src=s&origin=recordpageen_US
dc.identifier.volume11, article no. 841en_US
dc.identifier.isiWOS:000297820800001-
dc.publisher.placeUnited Kingdomen_US
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridYip, PSF=7102503720en_US
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridChen, F=25928259900en_US
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridCheng, Q=37053342400en_US
dc.identifier.citeulike9980645-

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