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Social Networks Crime

Tweets and Threats: Gangs Find New Home On the Net 144

cold fjord send this quote from the Associated Press: "Social media has exploded among street gangs. ... They're turning to Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Instagram to flaunt guns and wads of cash, threaten rivals, intimidate informants ... sell weapons, drugs — even plot murder. 'What's taking place online is what's taking place in the streets,' says David Pyrooz, an assistant professor at Sam Houston State University. ... 'The Internet does more for a gang's brand or a gang member's identity than word-of-mouth could ever do. It really gives the gang a wide platform to promote their reputations. ... On the crime-fighting side ... this activity ... is transforming how police and prosecutors pursue gangs. Along with traditional investigative techniques, police monitor gangs online. [A] Cincinnati police officer who trains other law enforcement about social media says by the time gang members appear in court, authorities have a dossier of their words and videos online that challenge how they want to portray themselves. 'If a guy goes in and says, "I'm a good person. I've never held a gun," we can say, "Look at what he puts out about himself on social media. Here he is with a gun."'"
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Tweets and Threats: Gangs Find New Home On the Net

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 12, 2014 @12:08AM (#45930015)

    If a guy goes in and says, "I'm a good person. I've never held a gun," we can say, "Look at what he puts out about himself on social media. Here he is with a gun."

    Why should it matter what he says? Shouldn't you have... evidence?

  • Re:Laugh (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 12, 2014 @12:29AM (#45930115)

    Not the sharpest tools in the shed are they.

    These are gangstas. Gangstas are poor, urban, uneducated, semiliterate, illmannered young black men who were raised by bitchy, morbidly obese single mothers, who think being a street thug is cool, and have terrible marksmanship. They don't wear belts and let their pants hang off their flabby asses because their homies in prison aren't allowed to have belts and they think prison is something to celebrate. They get teardrop tattoos to mourn the homies who got shot but it doesn't occur to them that a better solution would be to stop killing each other. Oh they also think their gutter street-slang dialect that they mostly got from the media is a sign of great sophistication.

    Of course these are not the sharpest tools in the shed. Hell, it's a miracle their daddy was smart enough to get Tab A into Slot B! That's what gangstas are good at of course: breeding. Every babymomma is a trophy! 'Sides that means more SNAP, WIC and EBT payments yo!

    Gotta love the ivory tower, smug liberal Slashdotters that are so numerous lately. Never actually being in a real ghetto and seeing real gangbangers, they can comfortably sit on their cozy little Lazy Boy and bitch about me because they honestly don't know what the fuck they're talking about. The only young black men they know about are the doctors and lawyers on TV. But whatever you do, don't question your conditioning.

  • by gweihir ( 88907 ) on Sunday January 12, 2014 @12:29AM (#45930119)

    Post-Snowden, even the most clueless moron must know that social media are under constant surveillance and that all said there is being recorded.

  • by The_Star_Child ( 2660919 ) on Sunday January 12, 2014 @12:38AM (#45930161)
    Street thugs don't strike me as particularly conscientious.
  • by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Sunday January 12, 2014 @12:55AM (#45930239)

    Anyone who ever had some fingers in the organized crime, on either side of the fence, knows that there are things to avoid. Being the guy to pick up the money from a money laundering deal is not where you want to be, since it's the point where the police can actually get busy. Likewise, being the guy selling the drugs on the street ain't the best position in the drug train since that's where you're easy to grab.

    And it's unlikely that being the social media guy for gangs is a very popular position unless you're planning to be a vital part to the federal prison system and job security for wardens. But someone's gotta do it, and some poor idiot will be doing it. Just like there's always some poor idiot willing to sell drugs or be the money mule.

  • Re:Laugh (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 12, 2014 @01:01AM (#45930263)

    Doesn't make it any less true

  • by gallondr00nk ( 868673 ) on Sunday January 12, 2014 @09:39AM (#45931549)

    It's not stupidity that motivates them to show off AK's, pounds of weed and fuckloads of money. It's linked strongly to status, ego and hierarchy.

    These are gangs remember. Their image is absolutely vital to their status. No-one is going to fear or respect you if you don't show off. If there's three or four big street gangs in a major city, you need to stand out and show yourself to be higher in the pack than the others.

    Think of old school pimps and their massive chrome encrusted Impalas. Looking in from the outside, you might be tempted to say "you're fucking stupid, drawing attention to yourself like that". But that's the entire point. It's showing you, not someone else, is top dog around here. That you can protect your posessions, that you have enough status to drive such an outrageous car in a neighbourhood where it sticks out. Others don't touch it because they know who you are, you're that fucking important. No one is going to believe that you're shit if you drive a fifteen year old Saturn.

    It's like a celebrity lifestyle in so much that it isn't enough just to be rich, you have to *show* that you are. Same with street gangs, it isn't enough to be bad ass, you have to demonstrate it. Gangs don't just work by their acts, they work by the way people percieve them.

    They might be uneducated, but I wouldn't call them stupid.

  • Re:Laugh (Score:5, Insightful)

    by LoRdTAW ( 99712 ) on Sunday January 12, 2014 @01:44PM (#45932691)

    "PS Programs like SNAP, WIC and EBT generally reduce crime and you fools just cut it."

    It does and it doesn't. WIC, EBT and SNAP benefits single mothers with children and other disabled people. But very often those services often help nurture the "ghetto family". Basically an irresponsible woman has multiple children from multiple men. She finally has enough kids to live comfortably without a job and eventually a man (often one of her baby daddy's) sees the perfect opportunity: free living! Since the woman will settle for any man willing to put up with her and her kids the leech will happily move in to her welfare paid apartment and eat welfare paid meals. So he gets a nice free ride. And with so much free time on his hands he can no go out and mingle with the other respectable family men in his neighborhood. Often the man needs a little money on the side and knows damn well that work is for suckers. So he turns to dealing drugs and other criminal activities to give him some pocket money. He of course is still screwing more women on the side but he doesn't care because he has his sugar momma waiting at home. What happens when his sugar momma's welfare money dries up? Well duh! He has been screwing women the whole time and has a trail of kids. One of those women is bound to have a brood of young children he can leech off of. Plus he can wave around a bit of his ill gotten cash to lure her in. So he leaves the now former sugar momma for another and the cycle repeats.

    Some people will find this racist. It isn't. Its a sad truth that no one wants to hear. So they plug their ears while shouting racism! And I have witnessed it first hand through a few families I know. Its sad when you see children growing up in a household where their siblings all have different men who aren't around and no one is actively encouraging them to break the cycle. Everyone is uneducated and frustrated in life because they have nothing to show for it. The men often only have their street cred to show off which keeps the cycle of violence going.

    The solution is simple: education. Though this has to start at home with at least one caring parent. And often the parents are so ignorant and uncaring that they are useless.

I've got a bad feeling about this.