Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Emo/Goth suicide/selfharm sterotype incorrect

The idea of the gloomy teen dressed in black cutting herself is an ongoing stereotype but a US report from a conference of experts dismisses this as a deceptive idea likely to distract people from the real problem:

Parents and school staff often have a perception of self-injury that is connected to listening to gloomy music and wearing black. The perception says if you skateboard or listen to emo band Dashboard Confessional, you are more likely to slice your arms with scissors.

If only it were that simple.

Out of context, singing along to Gerard Way, of rock group My Chemical Romance, and his "songs that make you slit your wrists," can seem new and troubling to parents who were never fans of Pink Floyd, Nick Drake, or the blues.

But saying self-injury can be contained within one clique of kids, one group of fans of one type of music, galls those who have been there. "The quiet ones? You can't tell," said the Mayfield girl. "It's hard to tell who's doing it or not."

Nor does the perception, however prevalent, hold water, say the experts. Those who self-injure can -- are -- also the jazz-band members, pre-mission Mormons, theater kids and cheerleaders. Poland said those who self-injure tend to be "likable, functional and intelligent kids, but they break down under stress."

Pity those who made the Channel News telecommunications news report on a US survey announced this summer on security dangers on the internet for children didn't know this. Besides paedophiles and viruses the report on the survey warned parents that increasing numbers of children were visiting "gothic" websites with supposedly disastrous consequences. The report supposedly claimed that Emo is in fact a sub branch of Goth with rather than being entirely separate, as most goths and emos claim see quotes below:

Webroot online security report 2007 19/07/07

Webroot Software says its new research shows a disconnect between parents and their children regarding Internet usage.
The report which corroborates existing concerns regarding the online activities of children ages 5 to 17, uncovers a number of discrepancies among children's self-reported online activities versus what parents believe them to be. The report further discusses potential legal implications and security risks parents may face due to their children's online behaviour and best practices for ensuring a safe online experience for children...

* More and more young people are turning to websites celebrating 'gothics' and promoting self-harm - the most recent popular websites attracting a new cult of young gothics - the 'Emo' - for Emotional Goths.
The full report can be downloaded here:

Yet the actual report doesn't mention anything about emos or goths at all.

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