It used to be a hard and fast rule in every newsroom: we do not report suicides. But times change, and circumstances change. We report “suicide by cop” as a matter of standard newsroom procedure. But, just as it’s no longer desirable to use the phrase “wheelchair-bound” – people use wheelchairs to get around, as mobility devices; they’re not “bound” to them – it’s also considered incorrect form to say “committed suicide”. So, how should you say it? Here is a fantastic resource, put together by journalists who’ve done a lot of work in this area. It’s probably a good idea to share this resource with your colleagues in the newsroom.
Posted by Tim Morrissey