Wikipedia is not therapy! | WIRED

On January 15, Philippe Beaudette blocked her for a week on charges of disruptive editing and issued a warning note. “I hope you will listen and seriously consider what I say when I tell you nothing here – NOTHING – is so serious that you have to think about suicide,” Beaudette Written. “You can go back when the blocking expires, but until then, I hope you skip it and get clear.”

On February 28, an unsigned account left a note on her talk page titled ‘sorry to announce.’ “Lucia Black, a Wikipedia member, passed away three weeks ago,” it reads. “Unable to access her password to reinforce the statement, decided to send the word this way.” Among the condolences there was a passage: “Be safe, sweetie. I will miss you. I wish I could do more to help you. “

After a night of aimless driving, Elliott finally turned his white Hyundai home. He was hugging his kids and sleeping in bed when the police knocked on his door in the morning to check on the welfare. They also visited during the night, when he disappeared. The details are not clear yet, but it is possible that this is an example of the Wikimedia Foundation’s emergency response system working well, by connecting a troubled editor with local law enforcement. to keep him safe. After calming down from her panic state, all Elliott wanted to do was continue sleeping. But three police confirmed that he was taken to a nearby hospital for assessment. At first, he and his wife were against. “Bloke told me, ‘If you go out and kill yourself, it will be up to my conscience,’ says Elliott. “When he said it that way, logically and clearly, and with compassion – he was quite polite, even though I was a bit bad at him – I just realized that I should Stop making his life difficult, and just go with it. “

As we spoke on a July evening, Elliott could see the humor of the situation two months earlier. After I posed the same question that the police asked him – why did he feel suicidal? – Elliott can now describe it like this, while laughing at the absurdity: ‘Well, I’m editing a website, and I’m writing about Salim Mehajer, and people mean to me! “

As we talked, Elliott walked from his workplace to a Sydney central train station. He started a new job in IT administration three days after his episode and he said that everything is going very well. Our conversation was interrupted by the sound of a male voice announcing the background. “Wikipedia was the starting point,” he said as he thought back to that Tuesday. “It was the straw that broke the camel’s back. That’s not the cause, but it’s worrying that Wikipedia can still have that effect. Honestly, I wasn’t too well. ”

Elliott said that he has no malicious intentions on other Wikipedia editors and administrators involved. He knows that they are not aware of the other stressors in his life that contributed to him flying out of the house, which led to him pressing ‘send’ that email, in which he was admitted his suicide intentions. “I have an anxiety problem, which I think probably stemmed from my lack of concentration,” he said. “I do have some depression, but mostly anxiety. All have contributed. “His mental illness is being treated, and he is surrounded by a strong community of friends and family. He’s not ashamed of what happened, but he’s aware of the stigma surrounding this topic. Elliott wishes to protect his family and himself, which is why his name has been changed for this article.

However, he is unsure of how the community could respond better to editors with similar behavior. “When someone is in that state, the challenge becomes – what do you do with such a person?” he wondered.

Outside the front door, he paused for a moment to say good night, then turned the key to greet his wife and children. With his IP address blocked from editing the website indefinitely, Elliott had no choice but to become another regular visitor; a tourist cannot influence the change. Now he’s clear that when it comes to Wikipedia, he could better be an outsider, looking at.

* Name has been changed

Anyone who is committing suicide can get help instantly by visiting or by calling 1–800-SUICIDE if you are in the United States. Suicide is preventable, and if you want to commit suicide, you have to get help. For a list of international hotlines, click here

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