As a result of the recent UK riots (aka opportunist violence, thieving and thuggery), much has been said about the negative impacts of ‘social media‘ on the events. However, there is also much to be praised about the power and use of social media. Comments both for and against, are mostly dependant upon which side of the political divide you wish to hang your baseball cap…
Despite all the thuggery having reportedly been coordinated by the use of the Blackberry Messenger Service and SMS texting etc, a large proportion of post rioting good deeds have also been strengthened by Social Media. Sam Pepper is one such example of the way in which social media can be used for good things.
Despondent and angry about the rioting Sam decided to make a stand and hang his particular baseball cap on ‘Operation Cup Of Tea’, a Facebook event that everyone could attend. Being an online event allowed people to stay at home riot free and safe. Over night Twitter started trending #OperationCupOfTea within a few days his Facebook page already had over 297,957 attending.
The message we should learn from this is – not all of our young people are deliquent criminals… I for one am happy and proud to drink tea with the lad… Might just listen to some music whilst sipping my brew!
- Brooms, tea and post-it notes (bookmouse.wordpress.com)
- If Your Anti-Riot. Join ‘Operation Cup Of Tea’. (femaleimagination.wordpress.com)
- What the England Riots Tell Us About Social Media (pbs.org)
- Social media is a force for good during difficult days (cnn.com)
- 5 positive contributions social media made to the UK riots (robweatherhead.co.uk)