Suicide Takes A Communal Turn

Japanese groups gather in online chat rooms to plot very real suicides
By Greg Atwan,  Newser User
Posted Apr 23, 2007 2:07 PM CDT

(Newser) – Of all the things initiated in anonymous online chat rooms, group suicide has to be the most macabre. David Samuels explores  why hundreds of Japanese adults, previously unknown to each other, have gathered to die together in small groups, often asphyxiating themselves in cars by carefully placing charcoal burners to suck the oxygen out of the air.


With a cultural propensity for suicide and a painful end to the '90s boom, Samuels finds a cross-section of Japanese In chat rooms and even coffeehouses, blithely alluding to their resolve to end it all. "I guess I will either commit suicide, or die together with somebody who is garbage like me," one middle-aged man ruminates.