UK Prime Minister Wants To Ban Suspected Rioters From Facebook & Twitter

from the oh-come-on dept

After initially blaming the Blackberry and suggesting that Blackberry's messaging service be shut down to try to quell the UK riots, it seems that UK politicians are trying to up the level of "bad ideas in reaction to riots" with Prime Minister David Cameron suggesting that those who are suspected of rioting be banned from social networks like Twitter and Facebook.
David Cameron has told parliament that in the wake of this week's riots the government is looking at banning people from using social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook if they are thought to be plotting criminal activity.

The prime minister said the government will review whether it is possible to stop suspected rioters spreading online messages, in his opening statement during a Commons debate on Thursday on the widespread civil disorder for which MPs were recalled from their summer recess.
I'm at a loss to see how anyone believes that cutting off communication for people who feel disenfranchised will suddenly make them less interested in rioting. There's this rush by people in charge to think that "if only we could stop them from spreading messages, that will calm them down." That seems likely to be a giant miscalculation. It's not hard to get around any such ban, and instituting such a ban is just likely to piss off the very people they're trying to calm down.

Filed Under: david cameron, free speech, london, pre-crime, riots, social networks, uk
Companies: facebook, rim, twitter


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  1. icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), 11 Aug 2011 @ 6:45pm

    Human Failing # I forget.

    We have always done things this way, and that is the only possible right way. We can not possibly consider any other way to do things because they must be wrong.

    Yes SOME people rioted. Some people peacefully protested.

    Yes SOME people looted. Other people used this chance to blame the others while they stole.

    I had hoped that cooler minds would prevail, and I would like to point out to anyone playing the home game, after they crush those worthless people underfoot.
    Force them into their extra secure areas... they will then have time to look at you who are smugly 1 rung up the ladder.
    If you weren't paying attention... your now on the bottom rung.
    Enjoy having your rights chipped away until your in the secure zone.
    Eye people who looked down on you from the rung above yours... feel sad they still don't get they are next.

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