The speed and ease with which rioters have been able to organise and amplify their violent plans has shocked everyone and their choice of communication platform has also created something of a branding nightmare for BlackBerry (do nothing and they deepen negative associations with the violent youths, hand over BBMs (BlackBerry Messanger) to police and a tin of privacy infringement worms is opened).
But where new technologies have helped rioters unite, they’re also helped to galvanise the rest of us. A Facebook group in support of the Met has gained half a million ‘likes’ in under 24 hours, www.riotcleanup.co.uk is already up and running and #riotcleanup is trending at number one on Twitter.
We’re grateful to those who are already out on our local street with their brooms and rubber gloves. Hopefully we won’t need to be out there again tomorrow.