Last Friday, a British police force posted an update on Twitter for every crime report they handled during a 24-hour period. (“We have already had 214 incidents before 5 a.m.,” read their first Tweet.) Facing budget cuts, the police outreach was “designed to highlight the wide range of work the force carries out,” and showed that their activities went beyond simple statistics about criminal activities.
“Reports of four foot doll or robot on Princess Parkway… confused man reporting his tv not working…”
“A lot of what we do is dealing with social and health problems such as missing children, people with mental health problems and domestic abuse,” explained the police chief. When it was over, they reminded the public it was intended “to raise awareness of the wide range of incidents that police officers have to deal with every day.” But the bizarre crime reports had also increased their following on Twitter from 3,000 subscribers to over 19,000.”