Suicide and Self-harm Policy

Overview

You may not promote or encourage suicide or self-harm.

At Twitter, we recognize that suicide and self-harm are significant social & public health challenges that require collaboration between all stakeholders – public, private, and civil society – and that we have a role and responsibility to help people access and receive support when they need it.

When developing this policy, we consulted extensively with experts to ensure that people who have engaged in self-harm or experienced suicidal thoughts can share their personal experiences. We also recognized the need to protect people from the potential harm caused by exposure to content that could promote or encourage self-harm – intentionally or inadvertently. That’s why our policy prohibits content that promotes or encourages self-harming behaviors and provides support to those undergoing experiences with self-harm or suicidal thoughts.

What is in violation of this policy?

Under this policy, you can’t promote, or otherwise encourage, suicide or self-harm. We define promotion and encouragement to include statements such as “the most effective”, “the easiest”, “the best”, “the most successful”, “you should”, “why don’t you”. Violations of this policy can occur via Tweets, images or videos, including live video. 

We define suicide to be the act of taking one’s own life. We define self-harm to include:

  • self-inflicted physical injuries e.g., cutting; and

  • eating disorders e.g., bulimia, anorexia.

Violations of this policy include, but are not limited to:

  • encouraging someone to physically harm or kill themselves;

  • asking others for encouragement to engage in self-harm or suicide, including seeking partners for group suicides or suicide games; and

  • sharing information, strategies, methods or instructions that would assist people to engage in self-harm and suicide.

What is not a violation of this policy?

Some examples of behavior that are not considered a violation of this policy include: 

  • sharing personal stories and experiences related to self-harm or suicide;

  • sharing coping mechanisms and resources for addressing self-harm or suicidal thoughts; and

  • discussions that are focused on research, advocacy, and education related to self-harm or suicide prevention.

Note: people can share their personal experiences, but should avoid sharing detailed information about specific strategies or methods related to self-harm, as this could inadvertently encourage this behavior.

Who can report violations of this policy?

Anyone can report content that may encourage or promote suicide or self-harm via our in-app reporting or our specialized reporting form. These reports are routed to a dedicated team who evaluate each case individually. 

Note: if we receive a report that someone has expressed an intention to engage in self-harm or suicide, we will contact them directly, encourage them to seek support, and provide information about dedicated online and hotline resources. We may also work with law enforcement officials where appropriate, for example, if we receive a valid emergency disclosure request as defined in our Law Enforcement Guidelines.

How to report violations of this policy

To ensure that we handle reports sensitively, our in-app reporting provides separate options for people who may be expressing an intention to harm themselves, and content that is encouraging or promoting self-harm or suicide.

Expressing intentions of self-harm or suicide

In-App

You can report content for review in-app as follows:

  1. Select Report Tweet from drop-down menu
  2. Select “It expresses intentions of self-harm or suicide”
  3. Submit your report

Desktop

You can report this content for review on desktop as follows:

  1. Select Report Tweet from drop-down menu

  2. Select “It expresses intentions of self-harm or suicide”

  3. Submit your report

Reporting form

You can also report this content for review via our dedicated report form.

In-App

You can report content for review in-app as follows:

  1. Select Report Tweet from drop-down menu
  2. Select “It expresses intentions of self-harm or suicide”
  3. Submit your report

Encouraging self-harm or suicide

In-App

You can report content for review in-app as follows:

  1. Select Report Tweet from drop-down menu

  2. Select “It’s abusive or harmful”

  3. Select “They’re  encouraging self-harm or suicide”

  4. Submit your report

Desktop

You can report this content for review on desktop as follows:

  1. Select Report Tweet from drop-down menu

  2. Select “It’s abusive or harmful”

  3. Select “They’re encouraging self-harm or suicide”

  4. Submit your report

What happens if you violate this policy?

Our enforcement approach depends on the type of content being shared, whether or not the reported account is encouraging or promoting self-harm or suicide, and the account’s previous history of violations. 

If you violate this policy by sharing content that intentionally encourages others to harm themselves, ask others to encourage you to harm yourself, or share detailed information or instructions related to self-harm or suicide methods, we will require you to remove this content. We will also temporarily lock you out of your account before you can Tweet again. If you continue to violate this policy, or if your account is dedicated to promoting or encouraging self-harm or suicide, your account will be permanently suspended. If cases include images or videos related to self-harm or suicide, we will also evaluate this content under our sensitive media policy. If you believe that your account was suspended in error, you can submit an appeal.

We may also take steps to prevent the spread of instructional material hosted on third-party websites by marking such links as unsafe

Additional resources

Learn more about our range of enforcement options and our approach to policy development and enforcement.

Learn more about how you can support someone experiencing thoughts of self-harm or suicide. 

Visit our Safety Center for a list of local mental health resources and read our blog on suicide prevention to learn more about our work.

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