Year: 2021 Source: JMIR Mental Health. (2021). 8(11), e24471. doi: 10.2196/24471 SIEC No: 20210852

Objective:his qualitative study aims to develop a valid and reliable annotation scheme for evaluating risk and protective factors for suicidal ideation in posts in suicide crisis forums.

Methods: We designed a valid, reliable, and clinically grounded process for identifying risk and protective markers in social media data. This scheme draws on prior work on construct validity and the social sciences of measurement. We then applied the scheme to annotate 200 posts from r/SuicideWatch—a Reddit community focused on suicide crisis.

Results: We documented our results on producing an annotation scheme that is consistent with leading public health information coding schemes for suicide and advances attention to protective factors. Our study showed high internal validity, and we have presented results that indicate that our approach is consistent with findings from prior work.

Conclusions: Our work formalizes a framework that incorporates construct validity into the development of annotation schemes for suicide risk on social media. This study furthers the understanding of risk and protective factors expressed in social media data. This may help public health programming to prevent suicide and computational social science research and investigations that rely on the quality of labels for downstream machine learning tasks.