Due in part to the rising crimes that seem to originate from encounters from social networking sites such as Facebook or MySpace the NYPD has decided to add a new unit to focus on social networking. The new unit will mine social media, looking for info about troublesome house parties, gang showdowns and other potential mayhem, sources said. Here in Philadelphia, where I live, we’ve experienced issues with Flash Mobs. One theory is that these mobs are using Facebook to coordinate. A unit like the NYPD’s could go a long way to help combat them. Same goes for what’s happening now in London. Word is that many of the London rioters are using Twitter to post pictures of their mayhem and also coordinate meet-up plans. Law enforcement officials there are trying to use those pictures to catch criminals.
The new unit, which will be headed up by Newly named Assistant Commissioner Kevin O’Connor, will operate out of the city’s Community Affairs Bureau.