Greater Manchester Police (GMP) gave the public a very special insight into their work last week when they tweeted all the calls they received over a period of 24 hours. Using the hashtag #GMP24, they shared everything from crimes in progress to a Grandmother who couldn't get her grandkids to do their homework!
The diary of events made compelling content, giving a completely unique glimpse into what the British public at large considered to be an emergency, pulling on the resource, time and energy of the police on duty that day. The timely updates demonstrated just how the nature of calls changed from sunset to sunrise delivering a genuine ‘slice of life’ portrayal of British life.
For some, who were not on twitter back in 2010 when GMP launched their first Twitterthon were perhaps shocked at the diverse range of calls that the police have to tackle day in day out. It also proved to be a very effective way of highlighting the great challenge faced by public services like police forces, in times of austerity cuts.
Sir Peter Fahy Chief Constable of GMP is quoted on the official website as saying:
“Since we held our first Twitter day in 2010 the force has shrunk by 1,400 officers and it has become more of a challenge to maintain the service to the public.”
In fact, the Twitterthon recorded 2,626 calls, which was on a par with 2010. So the campaign provided great facts and to no doubt help shape the political manifestos as we head into the next election, where policing will be a key topic of debate.
But political agendas aside, there is no doubt that this is yet another great example of the police using social media to raise awareness, educate and influence the British Public. The media will have a feast on the content and perhaps one or two people who would have otherwise called to say that they had lost their cat, glasses or car keys, may reconsider in the future thanks to the public debate caused by releasing the information in this way.
In recent weeks, we have praised the police for trialling new approaches – see our ‘Crash Scene Selfies’ blog, which has been our most visited story for two consecutive months. And this story only reinforces our position.
Social media provides a great way of getting information out quickly to the public. Many police forces across the UK are signed up to the Twitter Alert service enabling people to subscribe to get live updates as a situation develops.
CrowdControlHQ are very proud to work with Greater Manchester Police alongside many other police forces across the UK and we say bravo for pushing the boundaries yet again Greater Manchester Police.
Interested to hear more about how Greater Manchester Police has pushed boundaries in social media? Click here to hear Amanda Coleman speaking at Beyond Social
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