UK police aim to adapt to Twitter-led protests

Feb 09, 2011 By RAPHAEL G. SATTER , Associated Press

(AP) -- Authorities will have to move faster to help contain the increasing number of protests being organized and run through social media sites, Britain's police inspection body said Wednesday.

Her Majesty's Inspectorate of the Constabulary said would have to focus on speed and communication as demonstrators turn to Internet sites such as to coordinate their actions.

"Large numbers of protesters can be organized in hours and change their focus in minutes through the use of social media and mobile phones," the report said. "Those responsible for commanding events must plan with this adaptability in mind."

The report singled out UK Uncut, a protest group organized quickly by Twitter users upset at the government's plans to slash public spending and perceived tax avoidance by major British companies. The group has used social-networking sites to help coordinate their actions; the tools include a live mapping service intended to help protesters dodge police cordons.

The inspectorate said the agility of these new means that police have to work within "tighter timeframes, in a way that responds as swiftly as possible to events."

It also said that police forces - many of which have long been working to expand their online presence - would have to consider how best to communicate with tech-savvy protesters.

Explore further: Facebook dressed down over 'real names' policy

5 /5 (2 votes)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Iran launches cyber crime unit: police

Jan 24, 2011

Iran on Sunday officially launched its cyber police unit to confront Internet crimes and counter social networks that spread "espionage and riots," police chief Esmaeil Ahmadi Moghaddam said.

Dutch police investigate apparent hacker attack

Dec 10, 2010

(AP) -- Police said Friday they are investigating if hackers were responsible for taking down websites of police and prosecutors in the Netherlands after the arrest of a 16-year-old for involvement in a cyberattack on several ...

Recommended for you

Facebook dressed down over 'real names' policy

6 hours ago

Facebook says it temporarily restored hundreds of deleted profiles of self-described drag queens and others, but declined to change a policy requiring account holders to use their real names rather than drag names such as ...

Yelp to pay US fine for child privacy violation

13 hours ago

Online ratings operator Yelp agreed to pay $450,000 to settle US charges that it illegally collected data on children, in violation of privacy laws, officials said Wednesday.

A Closer Look: Your (online) life after death

Sep 16, 2014

Sure, you have a lot to do today—laundry, bills, dinner—but it's never too early to start planning for your digital afterlife, the fate of your numerous online accounts once you shed this mortal coil.

Web filter lifts block on gay sites

Sep 16, 2014

A popular online safe-search filter is ending its practice of blocking links to mainstream gay and lesbian advocacy groups for users hoping to avoid obscene sites.

User comments : 0