4Chan suicide attempt: 200 people watch live stream of young man trying to set himself on fire, encouraging 'Stephen' to take his own life

University of Guelph confirms man suffered severe but non-life threatening burns

A young man has attempted to burn himself to death on a live stream watched by 200 encouraging people on the internet.

The incident took place on Saturday evening and involved a young man who identified himself only as “Stephen”.

The University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada confirmed that a fire was deliberately started in its Dundas Hall student residence by a 20-year-old student who was later taken to hospital with severe but non-life threatening burns.

Stephen is said to have logged-on to the controversial anonymous imageboard website 4chan on Saturday evening, stating his intention to take his own life. He posted that, as he’d been a long-time user of the website, he was willing to broadcast his suicide as a bizarre form of entertainment for fellow 4channers.

He posted: “Hi /b/. This is it. Tonight I will be ending my own life… As an oldfag [long-term user] who’s been on 4chan since 2004, I thought I would finally give back to the community… All that I request is for you guys to link me to a site where I am able to stream it”.

According to the Daily Dot, another 4chan user quickly set Stephen up with a broadcast on another website where 200 viewers logged-in to watch.

In the footage Stephen can be seen consuming pills and alcohol before starting a fire in his room. He then climbs under his bed as the room fills with smoke, updating his feed twice by posting “#imdead #omgimonfire” and “I’m fuck3d”.

While some users encouraged Stephen and sickeningly pondered how long he may have to live, others complained that “the smoke is obscuring the camera” and demanded still images of the suicide be immediately posted on 4chan.

Shortly afterwards, firefighters were seen arriving and dragging Stephen out of the smoke-filled room.

The University of Guelph reportedly later confirmed that a 20-year-old student had deliberately started the fire in his fourth floor residence room.

CBS reported that the student suffered serious, non-life threatening injuries and is now in stable condition at Guelph General Hospital.

Brenda Whiteside, the vice president of student affairs at the university, said two staff members were also taken to hospital for smoke inhalation, but have been released.

According to Daily Dot, the university added that they were "aware that there is disturbing social media activity circulating about this incident".

A Samaritans’ spokesperson said: “In the UK it is illegal to encourage or assist a person to take their own life, be it on the internet or in any other space. Every suicide is a tragic waste of life and we would encourage anyone struggling to cope to contact Samaritans. Talking to us can help people to see their situation in a different light and, by exploring all their options, work through that moment of crisis. We are available round the clock, every single day of the year, on 08457 90 90 90 or email jo@samaritans.org.” 

For confidential support call the Samaritans on 08457 90 90 90, visit a local Samaritans branch or see Samaritans.org. For confidential support in the US, call the National Suicide Prevention Line on 1-800-273-8255.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Sport
Seth Rollins cashes in his Money in the Bank contract to win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship
WWERollins wins the WWE World Heavyweight title in one of the greatest WrestleMania's ever seen
News
news
Arts and Entertainment
Jay Z has placed a bet on streaming being the future for music and videos
music
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
tvPoldark, TV review
News
(David Sandison)
newsHow living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: 3rd Line IT Support / Senior Engineer / Support Analyst

£24000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity has ari...

Recruitment Genius: Field Sales Executive - OTE £60,000

£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Recognised as one of the fastes...

Recruitment Genius: Operations Manager - Refrigeration

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This leading provider of refrigeration, mechan...

Ashdown Group: Head of Finance - Finance Manager - Central London - £70,000

£70000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Head of Finance - Financial Controller - Fina...

Day In a Page

No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor