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Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Oz: Proposed suicide-chat law

Maybe the rest of the world will follow suit: The Australian federal government has introduced legislation that would impose fines of up to $110,000 (about $88,000 US) on people "who use the Internet to encourage others to commit suicide," News.com.au reports. "Under the law people, discussing methods of euthanasia over the Internet could also be committing an offence." The operative word is "methods"; the discussion of euthanasia itself would not be at issue, the article adds. There are online communities focused on suicide which "support" people of all ages who are considering it - see "Japan's Net suicide tragedy" and a 2004 series about online suicide in Wired News, with Part 3 focusing on teenagers: "A Teen Dies: Who is Responsible?" (here are Parts 1 and 2).

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