Social media monitor used by cops

Geofeedia is an analytics company that put data from Facebook, Twitter and Instagram on the map. All this information, they were selling it to various police forces in the United States of America. They used this data for example for the controversial protests in Fergunson in 2014.

The American Civil Liberties Union gives it freely out to the world on their webpage. It was the decision of the ACLU to make the pieces public that they show. The protests in Fergunson are a part of a bigger debate about racial discrimination by the police of the US, the militarization of the police forces and the unjustified violence. A Geofeedia coworker says in an email that the service of the company was a big utility to monitor the protests with success.

According to sources, a post didn’t just come along with the geotag, but also with the actual localization of the upload. Like this, Geofeedia would have the data of a post within 20 minutes of the upload, which made it very easy to surveil the local community.

Currently, they don’t access the data anymore, since Twitter has a policy for this, and though Instagram and Facebook don’t, the ACLU has stopped the information stream. They kindly ask social media to never again offer these kinds of information, write a policy for it, and make sure that developers also treat the data they receive correctly. Remember, like I told you in this arcticle… Be careful with what you post. Do you think it’s okay that social media information is controlled by the police?

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