Public embarrassment for the police: Twitter bashes the NYPD with its own virtual nightstick

The invite to send pics with the #myNYPD hashtag prompts a wave of brutal photos from disgruntled New Yorkers via Twitter

Ah, public outreach! Yesterday afternoon, an NYPD oversight turned into quite a (crime) scene. That is, one social-media misstep was picked up by a few affected citizens, and then the power of the Internet hive mind took over. At about 2pm, the @NYPDnews account tweeted the following:

An easy play for some real New Yorkers to express their gratitude to the police, and a great way to humanize the boys and girls in blue…right? Almost immediately, the hashtag began to be used to share quite different shots of the NYPD in action—many of which were part of the Occupy Wall Street protests.

The most disturbing aspect of this collection of pictures is not the violence, but the sheer volume of pictures depicting use of force in ostensibly peaceful circumstances.

And, then, of course, were the shots with something a little bit askew going on. Regardless, the point is still taken:

Whether this will get the NYPD thinking about its policies is questionable, but at the very least, it'll reconsider the way in tackles Twitter and the rest of its social media. In the meantime, if you have a candid moment on your camera roll, catharsis is waiting for you at the other end of a #myNYPD hashtag.

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Editor: Marley Lynch (@marleyasinbob)

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