Will Philly Sue Facebook Over Teen 'Flash Mobs'?

By PW Staff
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 6 | Posted Feb. 18, 2010

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CNET reports members of the Philadelphia City Council want to sue social networking sites they believe hosted organizing that led to dozens of teens rampaging through the downtown Macy's store this week. "Two members of Philadelphia's city council are considering legal action against Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace in the wake of a "flash mob" earlier this week that turned violent, according to a letter sent to the city's mayor and obtained by CNET. They claim that social-media sites don't do enough to keep tabs on violence that could be organized through their communication channels. No charges have been drawn up, in the letter the councilmembers ask the permission of Mayor Michael Nutter to "pursue the possibility" of a lawsuit. "It is disheartening; to say the least, that these youth so casually disrespected our residents, businesses, customers, visitors, and our police department," the letter dated Wednesday said. "While they certainly owe this city an apology and deserve to be punished under the fullest extent of the law, we believe that social media outlets should also bear some of the blame." The letter, written by council members Frank DiCicco and James F. Kenney, explains that this is the second such time a band of mischievous teens has formed via social media and went on to destroy property. "We believe that the lack of monitoring of these sites allows for mass, organized riots to occur.""

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Comments 1 - 6 of 6
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1. south philly said... on Mar 22, 2010 at 11:07AM

“Did Mayor Nutter really use "disrespect as a verb???????”

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2. Anonymous said... on Mar 22, 2010 at 06:12PM

“nutter need to leave phila”

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3. Anonymous said... on Mar 22, 2010 at 06:18PM

“where are the mothers and fathers at”

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4. Anonymous said... on Mar 23, 2010 at 08:10AM

“Sure , let's spend the precious dollars that Phila. seems to have so few of on a lawsuit instead of a solution to this urgent dilemma.”

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5. Anonymous said... on Mar 23, 2010 at 10:24AM

“Some people just don't seem to realize that regulating social networking sites is essentially the same as holding a wireless phone provider responsible for plans made over the phone or text. Only difference is one's public and the other's not. That saying "don't shoot the messenger" applies - here, Facebook and Twitter are the messengers.”

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6. Anonymous said... on Feb 5, 2013 at 06:06PM

“This is just wrong Facebook and twitter can be used to get a bunch of people to organize a charity event. Get people together to do legal things or get a bunch of kids together for a study group. Now if those kids decide to do something more nefarious than studying. Why should facebook or twitter be responsible. All they did was bring people together. Perhaps schools should be dismantled. Why They get a bunch of kids together and turn them loose all at the same time at 245 or 3pm What if those kids all met in the lunch room and planned some unlawful activity for when school let out. Would we hold the school responsible?


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