Reddit and 4Chan Users Part of Massive Crowdsourced Terror Investigation

The Internet Patrol - Patrolling the Internet for You

4Channers and Reddit users are among those on social media sites who are part of a new wave of citizen cybersleuths – or “crowdsleuthers” as some are calling them. The concept of crowdsourced terror investigation isn’t new, but it’s in the news like never before since the Boston Marathon bombing.

Explains Robert McCrie, professor of security management, “Our expectation of a horrific crime like this being solved is higher than it was in the past because of the ubiquitous nature of the collecting of images.”


What Professor McCrie is referring to is the crowdsourcing of digital evidence – in this case the countless photos and videos taken by a multitude of people and cameras present at the Boston Marathon.

Already more than one million images, and 1000 hours of video footage, have been provided to authorities.

And in the latest news, it seems that those images may have yielded paydirt. The FBI has released images of two men they say are the prime suspects in the bombings.

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Prime Suspects in Boston Marathon Bombings
boston-marathon-bombing-suspects

 

While it is social media that is the vector for this crowdsleuthing, what is behind it is a phenomena that we first saw on 9/11, if not before: people who are standing up and saying “not in America, you don’t!” From the brave people who “crowdsourced” the taking over of United flight 93 on that fateful day, driving it into a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, rather than let the terrorists drive it into a target in our nation’s capital, to those people now working feverishly on Reddit and 4Chan and elsewhere to help identify the Boston Marathon bombing suspects and bring them to justice, we say – hats off to you, and thank you.

Thank you for stepping up to help your country, your community, and your fellow citizens.

 

And most of all, thank you for demonstrating what makes America, and indeed most countries, great – that the vast, vast majority of people are caring, decent representatives of a world humanity, who will not put up with some abhorent, aberration of a person perpetrating an evil on their fellow humans – even when their victims are complete strangers.

A tip of the hat to Jessica over at The Wiseass Wife for bringing this to our attention!

[For more photos of the suspects, or to provide the FBI with information, see the FBI website.]

No Paywall Here!
The Internet Patrol is and always has been free. We don't hide our articles behind a paywall, or restrict the number of articles you can read in a month if you don't give us money. That said, it does cost us money to run the site, so if something you read here was helpful or useful, won't you consider donating something to help keep the Internet Patrol free?
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