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Cops Walking the MySpace Beat 278

theodp writes "Meet the point-and-click police. Newsweek reports that a growing number of ordinary officers are working a new beat, turning to MySpace to collect clues and crack offline cases. Most of the nabbed wrongdoers have been victims of their own hubris, like the two boys who uploaded video of themselves firebombing an abandoned airplane hangar earlier this month."
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Cops Walking the MySpace Beat

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  • Why I post AC (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 16, 2006 @07:05PM (#15139826)
    I behave as though anything I do on the internet will be recorded and saved forever. I'd rather not have to explain something I posted today to a potential employer twenty years from now. Ditto for some nutcase prosecuter with a creative theory about how I caused the war in Viet Nam (I'm exagerating for emphasis).
  • Plain and Simple (Score:5, Interesting)

    by PoitNarf ( 160194 ) on Sunday April 16, 2006 @07:07PM (#15139830)
    By now everyone should be wise enough not to post every single piece of information about them anywhere online, let alone in one place. Parents should be more diligent not with monitoring every single thing their kids do on the computer, but educating them what's ok and not ok to do on the Internet. Am I the only one getting tired of all this MySpace business? On the bright side I was amused reading TFA and seeing how these people were done in by their own sheer stupidity.
  • Re:Plain and Simple (Score:5, Interesting)

    by TubeSteak ( 669689 ) on Sunday April 16, 2006 @07:16PM (#15139865) Journal
    People who normally, would have boasted about their mayhem/stupidity to their friends, now post it online.

    It never fails to amuse me when people post pictures of their weed, bongs and/or them hitting the bong.

    The only difference between then and now, is that like your friends, the police (or your school, boss, parents) can also go online to see your pictures and videos.
  • Re:This is common... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by mpathetiq ( 726625 ) on Sunday April 16, 2006 @07:16PM (#15139866) Homepage
    I work for a small municipality. The code enforcement officer uses Facebook and MySpace to determine if college kids are breaking various residency laws. It's amazing how many people put up actual information on these sites.
  • Re:Plain and Simple (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ottothecow ( 600101 ) on Sunday April 16, 2006 @08:08PM (#15140052) Homepage
    Going to a school that is recruited heavily by i-banking firms, future employers really want to know the "other side of the story" on their applicants, the one that isnt told to them by the resume and interview process.

    I know that they have been known to hire people with access to the schools facebook (either current employees who are alumni or simply "hey, we will pay you $x for y amount of time with access to your account"). Now that facebook has tagable pictures that are much more advanced than myspace's photos, it's not even what you put in your own profile that matters but what other people post pictures of you doing. They aren't going to care about the ubiquitous pictures of minors consuming alcohol (its college...) but there are people with profiles where 90% of the pictures show them with a bong/blowing out smoke/something else along the lines. All things being equal (or even not being equal), I'm going to take the applicant that has pictures showing them doing a variety of activities over the one where the majority of their photos show them smoking pot. Some of it is just simple common sense...the untag button is there for a reason.

  • LA Times Article (Score:4, Interesting)

    by ScottCooperDotNet ( 929575 ) on Sunday April 16, 2006 @08:36PM (#15140115)
    Here's an LA Times article from a paranoid MySpace Mom who spies on her daughter for fear of those pedophiles the idiot box keeps talking about. [] Best parts are the Mom doesn't understand private profiles, and asks her friends about the site before looking at it herself. And then she bans her daughter from the one form of Internet activity she can easily track. Now her daughter is banned from MySpace but we're all sure she won't be using IM and web-mail, right?
  • by ehrichweiss ( 706417 ) on Sunday April 16, 2006 @08:46PM (#15140152)
    are walking... Some of the cops in my town got busted for posting inappropriate material [], like discussing a high profile case. The link isn't the original story as they charge $2.95 to view anything older than 7 days(lame, I know) but it does have some interesting facts.

    So Barney Fife and Roscoe P. Coltrain if you're listening...some of us are watching.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 16, 2006 @09:04PM (#15140217)
    In the case of drug users, they may be willing to admit they do it to most people but they know the consequences of letting certain people know are far too great.

    They may even actively participate in campaigning for legalization or something but when it comes to actually DOING the drug, the risks are too great. You can call the cops and tell them you are going to give a speech on why the world needs more meth but you cant call the cops and tell them when and where you are going to be doing a bunch of meth because that would inhibit your ability to continue doing so.

    In most ways, I agree with you that people shoudl be willing to do what they are willing to admit (like that cute girl I hooked up with last friday) but there are cases where they arent necissarily going to want to tell everyone like in the /. story a few days ago about the porn-guy who certainly wasnt personally ashamed of his business--he certainly told his mother--but didnt want everyone on his street knowing his profession. Note: this doesnt count for the ugly fat chick my roommate went home with. Despite the fact that he was getting quite desperate, he probobly was ashamed and somehowm everyone is still going to know about it...

    (AC because I moderated)

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 17, 2006 @01:44AM (#15140901)
    If you think it's okay to do drugs, then do them, and be frank about it. It is a strong form of hypocrisy to do them and then hope nobody finds out.

    I have the privilege of living in the Netherlands, where smoking pot is legalised (decriminalised): I am honest about using pot towards friends and strangers, but I don't expect someone else in another country, where there might be a fine for using/possessing pot to do the same.

    In this case it isn't people's embarrassments that's holding them from being honest, but not wanting to go to jail.

    For good measure, let's tick the AC-button here: I never know if my future employer might be reading this! :D

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 17, 2006 @01:49AM (#15140908)
    The cops should patrol myRedbook []. You have not seen anything until you have seen the web page of myRedbook. Pimps, prostitutes (of a wide range of ages), etc. use myRedbook to advertise prostitution for sale. The customers actually brag about their adventures on myRedbook.

    The time has come to shutdown myRedbook and to arrest the people running its web site. The cops need to do their job.

  • Re:Disappointment.. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by moro_666 ( 414422 ) <kulminaator@gmail. c o m> on Monday April 17, 2006 @06:43AM (#15141272) Homepage
    why don't you like soccer moms ? :p

    and man, you're really bad off if you don't like jedis ... luke will f you up.

    for the article: if you're dumb enough to blog your crimes, you're place is in the prison.
  • by Ohreally_factor ( 593551 ) on Monday April 17, 2006 @08:21AM (#15141368) Journal
    You're then assuming that the proxy server isn't operated by a CIA front company.

"I have not the slightest confidence in 'spiritual manifestations.'" -- Robert G. Ingersoll