Ingebjørg spends hours every day on Instagram, but she’s not posting selfies. She’s trying to save lives.
This softly-spoken 22-year-old has made it her mission to keep an eye on hundreds of desperate young women and girls who post their self-harm pictures and suicidal thoughts on secret accounts that only trusted followers can see.
Many of those involved have eating disorders, depression or other mental health problems. They don’t trust healthcare workers or doctors.
But they do trust Ingebjørg. She can see what they post and she routinely calls the police when she thinks somebody is in danger. It’s earned her the nickname “The Lifeguard”.
Ingebjørg doesn’t work for Instagram. Saving lives isn’t her job, she has no formal training and nobody pays her for what she does. So should the Facebook-owned social network take more responsibility for helping its users?
And what would happen if Ingebjørg wasn’t there?
If you are affected by the issues discussed you can find information about support organisations on the Befrienders Worldwide website https://www.befrienders.org/
Presenter: Catrin Nye
Producer: Ed Main
Editor: Mike Wendling
(Photo Caption: Ingebjørg in her home city of Bergen, Norway / Photo credit: BBC)
The Instagram suicide network
Andrine was 17 years old when she killed herself in March 2017.
For two years her mother left Andrine’s phone untouched in a cardboard box by her front door.
But when a journalist from the Norwegian broadcaster NRK approached her Andrine’s mother plucked up the courage to take a look.
The information from Andrine’s phone uncovered a secretive international network of young women and girls who share pictures of self-harm, thoughts about killing themselves and even their suicidal attempts.
Many of those in the network have eating disorders, depression or other mental health problems. They don’t trust healthcare workers or doctors, and they communicate using private Instagram accounts.
The investigation by NRK has identified at least 15 young women and girls in the network who have taken their own lives in the last three years.
So what responsibility does social media – and Instagram in particular - bear for the deaths?
If you are affected by the issues in this programme you can find information about support organisations on the Befrienders Worldwide website. https://www.befrienders.org/
Presenter: Catrin Nye
Producer: Ed Main
(Photo: A close-up of Andrine pinned on a noticeboard. Credit: BBC)
The rise of the 'Brazilian butt lift'
The Brazilian Butt Lift or as it’s more commonly known, the BBL, is one of the most dangerous cosmetic procedures in the world but that hasn’t stopped it becoming one of the most requested.
Posts on this type of cosmetic surgery are all over social media which show before and after photos to portray this popular body type.
It’s influenced one woman to think about having a BBL. But before she makes a decision, she speaks to social media influencers, her close friends and medical professionals who help guide her through her choice.
Are the deadly risks involved in this type of cosmetic surgery worth taking for a big bottom?
Originally broadcast 10/5/19
Presenter: Anisa Subedar
Reporter: Lola Mosanya
Picture: Credit: BBC
Why Greek activists are telling tourists to leave
That's what some tourists are being told when they visit the Athens district of Exarchia.
It’s been described as an "anarchist enclave", a place where riot police regularly clash with local activists. But it’s also a rapidly gentrifying area where Instagramable coffee shops are adorned with colourful, anti-establishment graffiti.
Its central location and cheap property prices mean that Exarchia has in recent years attracted increasing numbers of tourists. This in turn has stoked resentment among some activists, who say the pressures of tourism have driven rents up and pushed long-established residents out of their homes.
Radical left-wing groups have called for direct action to stop this trend. They hang banners telling tourists they are "targets", vandalise flats rented out via Airbnb, and post videos of their comrades shouting at visitors to leave.
But others in the neighbourhood argue tourism is giving Greece the means to recover from a devastating economic crisis and years of financial austerity.
BBC Trending travels to the beating heart of Exarchia to meet residents, activists and tourists. What happens when Instagram hipsters clash with local activists?
Presenter: Mike Wendling
Reporter: Jessica Bateman
Producer: Marco Silva
(Photo Caption: Activists stencil a slogan reading "Flats for immigrants not for Airbnb" on a wall in central Athens / Photo Credit: Getty Images)
Cuba’s digital revolution
A revolution is underway in Cuba. The country’s communist leaders, who normally retain tight control of the media, have encouraged Cubans to become more connected online.
Internet access used to be the preserve of a privileged (and relatively rich) few. But prices have come down, public wifi spots are popular, and less than a year ago 3G data access became available on Cuban phones.
Along with a huge uptake in the internet has come a flood of Cubans signing up to social media accounts. Even President Miguel Diaz-Canel is on Twitter.
And unlike staid and traditional state-run media, Cuban social media is relatively open, freewheeling, full of jokes, criticism of the government and, of course, memes.
Prices are still high and the government keeps a close eye on dissidents or “counter-revolutionaries”. But online, Cubans are exploring new ways to communicate that would have been unheard of just a few years ago.
The BBC’s Cuba correspondent Will Grant and BBC Trending reporter Reha Kansara have been meeting the Cubans at the forefront of their country’s digital revolution.
They meet political podcasters, a lesbian activist, a pro-government blogger, a gamer-turned-protester, a dissident journalist and one of Cuba’s biggest YouTube stars.
How are Cubans making their voices heard in a way they never have before – and how might social media transform the country?
Presenters: Will Grant and Reha Kansara
Photo: A young Cuban standing by the waterfront in Havana accesses the internet on his phone.