Belfast Telegraph

Home News UK changes good: Hannah's dad

A raft of changes to a controversial website used by teenage girl who killed herself after months of online bullying has been welcomed by her father.

David Smith, whose daughter - 14-year-old Hannah, was found dead in her bedroom earlier this month, described the measures as "a good thing".

The bosses of question-and-answer website launched an independent safety review after being heavily criticised following Hannah's death on August 2.

Mr Smith has been calling for tighter rules around such sites after his daughter endured months of torment on the site from anonymous users who posted abuse including some urging her to kill herself.

Among the changes are the introduction of a higher-profile button for reporting bullying and a pledge to hire more site moderators. It will also set up a separate website for parents to find out more about All the changes will be introduced by spring next year.

In a statement, the site's founders said they want users "to be able to have fun" but also enjoy using the website "in a safe environment".

Specsavers, Vodafone, Laura Ashley, EDF Energy and charity Save the Children all pulled adverts from amid the controversy surrounding Hannah's death after she was found hanged by older sister Jo at the family home in Lutterworth, Leicestershire.

The website has pledged to work with Leicestershire Police concerning the girl's death but also instructed law firm Mishcon de Reya to carry out the audit of its site and safety features.

Mr Smith said he believed the auditors had "taken a good, long look" at the website and the measures would make the site safer.

"It's a shame that someone has to go through what I and my family have gone through to get a company to change its ways," he said.


From Belfast Telegraph