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23rd Jan 2019

Instagram ‘helped kill my daughter’, says dad of 14-year-old

'She had so much to offer and that's gone.'
Instagram 'helped kill my daughter', says dad of 14-year-old

The father of a teenage girl who died by suicide has said that he believes Instagram played a role in her death.

London schoolgirl Molly Russell, 14, took her own life in November of 2017.

She had shown “no obvious signs” of mental heath issues or depression, her family said.

Molly’s father Ian described his daughter as “future-looking” and “enthusiastic” in an interview with BBC News this week.

Instagram 'helped kill my daughter', says dad of 14-year-old

He also said that she did her homework and packed her bag for school the night before her suicide.

The family looked into Molly’s Instagram account after her death and found that she had been viewing posts relating to depression, anxiety, self-harm and suicide on the social media platform.

Ian said that algorithms had allowed her to see more distressing content, contributing to her death.

“Some of that content is shocking in that it encourages self-harm, it links self-harm to suicide and I have no doubt that Instagram helped kill my daughter,” he said.

“She had so much to offer and that’s gone.”

Instagram 'helped kill my daughter', says dad of 14-year-old

He said that the family now want to raise awareness of the content that’s available to view on the platform.

In a statement, Instagram said that it “does not allow content that promotes or glorifies self-harm or suicide and will remove content of this kind.”

An inquest into Molly’s death is expected next year.