New app helps flag disturbing tweets and alert friends

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NEW YORK — Suicide prevention organization Samaritans launched a free app Wednesday that flags disturbing tweets and sends an alert to friends.

The app, Samaritans Radar, is currently available for Twitter users. Once downloaded, it sends out an alert to your e-mail when a person you follow tweets phrases such as “help me,” “tired of being alone,” “hate myself” and “need someone to talk to.”

Academic experts helped compile the words commonly used during difficult times, it said.

In addition to flagging tweets, the UK-based organization will also help contact anyone you’re concerned about. It offers help 24-7.

Samaritans Radar is in its infancy and won’t get it right every time,” the organization said in a statement. “It’s not good at sarcasm or jokes yet! But there’s a way for you to give feedback on whether a Samaritans Radar alert was correct, so the service improves for everyone.”