Abraham Biggs threatened suicide before, but finally went through with it live on the web:
A college student committed suicide by taking a drug overdose in front of a livewebcamas some computer users egged him on, others tried to talk him out of it, and another messaged OMG in horror when it became clear it was no joke. Some watchers contacted the Web site to notify police, but by the time officers entered Abraham Biggs’ home, a scene also captured on the Internet, it was too late.
Biggs, a 19-year-old Broward College student who suffered from what his family said wasbipolardisorder, or manic depression, lay dead on his bed in his father’s Pembroke Pines house Wednesday afternoon, the camera still running 12 hours after Biggs announced his intentions online around 3 a.m.
It was unclear how many people watched it unfold.
Biggs was not the first person to commit suicide with a webcam rolling. But the drawn-out drama and the reaction of those watching was seen as an extreme example of young people’s penchant for sharing intimate details about themselves over the Internet.
Biggs’ family was infuriated that no one acted sooner to save him, neither the viewers nor the Web site that hosted the live video, Justin.tv. The Web site shows a video image, with a space alongside where computer users can instantly post comments.
No doubt, this is a d@mn shame, and we can sympathize with the family about their loss. However, with regard to making cyber threats on one’s own life, the point at which other people need to step in is, at best, vague.
Where does the responsibility for this young man’s untimely death lie?