Feeds

David Cameron turns water cannons on social networks

PM shoots Web2.0 messenger, but what about the Sky 'copter, Dave?

The essential guide to IT transformation

David Cameron picked on social networks in Parliament this morning, when he told MPs – who were forced to cut short their holidays following four nights of looting, arson and violence in England – that he was considering such tech being barred when used by baddies.

"Mr Speaker, everyone watching these horrific actions will be stuck [sic] by how they were organised via social media," said the Prime Minister.

"Free flow of information can be used for good. But it can also be used for ill. And when people are using social media for violence we need to stop them.

"So we are working with the police, the intelligence services and industry to look at whether it would be right to stop people communicating via these websites and services when we know they are plotting violence, disorder and criminality."

Cameron didn't single out any specific social networks.

It's been alleged that Blackberry's group messenger service, BBM – which operates within a private network – had played a big role in helping thugs crew-up in hotspots in London, Birmingham, Manchester and other parts of England.

The Daily Mail and the Sun, meanwhile, have pinpointed Twitter for helping apparently "feral" youths to incite violence by encouraging people to loot businesses and cause havoc across the land.

It's unclear, however, how Cameron might enforce such a move. Interestingly, he didn't mention the role played by television broadcasters in the riots – Sky and the BBC's seemingly omnipresent helicopters documented exactly where the violence was taking place.

So any naughty young man or woman watching the live footage arguably knew exactly which location to move on to if they fancied raiding Carphone Warehouse's stock. ®

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

More from The Register

next story
Hello, police, El Reg here. Are we a bunch of terrorists now?
Do Brits risk arrest for watching beheading video nasty? We asked the fuzz
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
EU justice chief blasts Google on 'right to be forgotten'
Don't pretend it's a freedom of speech issue – interim commish
Detroit losing MILLIONS because it buys CHEAP BATTERIES – report
Man at hardware store was right: name brands DO last longer
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
UK government accused of hiding TRUTH about Universal Credit fiasco
'Reset rating keeps secrets on one-dole-to-rule-them-all plan', say MPs
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Yes, but what are your plans if a DRAGON attacks?
Local UK gov outs most ridiculous FoI requests...
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.