Wikipedia Is Not Therapy!
Andrew McMillen

Thank you for writing this. Jake is a treasure for Wikipedia and the Wikipedia Library and I’m so happy he shared his story because I think it’s helped people inside the organization get a handle on this. I was one of the community managers at for MetaFilter for a decade and we had our share of suicide threats, suicide attempts and a few actual suicides among our members. We had a set of admin procedures to handle them. It feels awful to even talk about creating policies to deal with your users’ worst moments, but those are the difficult conversations which need to happen. The internet is real life.

As a community response, members put together a page on the member-created wiki, a page called ThereIsHelp with pointers and resources for people worldwide dealing with suicidal feelings or a variety of other complicated mental health issues. I bring it up in situations like this where it seems appropriate. Any organization is welcome to copy, remix or share this information.

Ed Finkler (@funkatron) has a project called Open Sourcing Mental Illness which tries to facilitate constructive discussion of mental illness within the tech community.

For people in the US grappling with their own or a loved ones’ mental health challenges NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness is a great resource and may have a support group in your community. You are not alone. There is help.

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