A report published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) on December 13, 2021, linked rapper Logic’s song “1-800-273-8255” to an uptick in calls to the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, and as a direct result, a reduction of suicides during the time that the song was popular and heavily discussed throughout social media.
The study, published by several health care educators and researchers from institutions including the Medical University of Vienna Columbia University, concluded:
“Logic’s song ‘1-800-273-8255’ was associated with a large increase in calls to Lifeline. A reduction in suicides was observed in the periods with the most social media discourse about the song.”
Data were obtained from Lifeline and the Centers for Disease Control in an attempt to analyze changes to the amount of daily calls and suicides before and after the release of the song and accompanying video, which featured lyrics from the perspective of a person calling the hotline in need of help.
According to the study:
“In the 34 day period after the three events with the strongest public attention (the song’s release, the MTV Video Music Awards 2017, and Grammy Awards 2018), Lifeline received an excess of 9915 calls (95% confidence interval 6594 to 13 236), an increase of 6.9% (95% confidence interval 4.6% to 9.2%, P<0.001) over the expected number. A corresponding model for suicides indicated a reduction over the same period of 245 suicides (95% confidence interval 36 to 453) or 5.5% (95% confidence interval 0.8% to 10.1%, P=0.02) below the expected number of suicides.”