Following the outpouring of responses from the controversial first season of Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why, the streaming giant is taking actions to “help support more meaningful conversations as Season 2 rolls out later this year.”
As explained in a blog post on Wednesday, Netflix asked Northwestern University’s Center on Media and Human Development to conduct a global research study to find out “whether and how the series opened dialogue between teens and parents” about the “uncomfortable topics” broached in Season 1. Those issues included teen suicide, bullying, depression and rape.
While some of the findings proved encouraging — for example, more than half of the teenagers surveyed said that the show inspired them to apologize to people they’d mistreated in the past — it also became evident that the majority of parents “want more resources” from Netflix to add to these conversations.
Netflix says it will fulfill that request in four ways: Each season will now begin with a video (embedded above) of the actors, out of character, discussing how to get support; additional guidance from mental health experts have been added to 13ReasonsWhy.info, which will also feature a viewing guide to spark parent-teen conversations; a new after-show will feature “actors, experts and educations who helped inform [the show’s] approach” to difficult topics; and a wider effort is being made to work with groups around the world to “provide support within their communities on the issues presented in the series.”
Your thoughts on Netflix’s new steps? Drop ’em in a comment below.