There has been much discussion about how the recession is leading to more suicides. I suspect that the explosion in electronic communications may also be a contributory factor.
It has long been established that TV in a child's bedroom can increase depression. Could this, coupled with the growing trend among young people to socialise via electronic communications rather than meeting face-to-face, be deepening levels of depression? Time spent online is not the same as time spent with friends. Playing on a computer is not the same as spending time playing sport with real people.
A reliance on electronic communications could lead to the skills of socialising and conversation evaporating, causing younger people to become reclusive and socially anxious.