Facebook has a new role – fighting crime in Manchester

When Facebook was created I daresay the last thing on Mark Zuckerburg’s mind was the idea that one day it would be used to fight crime. But that’s what’s happening, at least in Manchester, UK.

It seems Greater Manchester Police (GMP) has twigged to the idea that Facebook is as much a distribution platform as breaking items on the evening news. So their new Facebook application adds local crime alerts to your profile and your news feed, getting the news about crime incidents out there to more youthful users of the Net than anything a normal police web site would be capable of.

Users can submit items via links to GMP on the application, and as well as news items, the GMP YouTube videos (yes!) which the Police have made as part of their awareness-raising.

The application appears to be the first of its type in the UK (I’m not sure about the world, but it could be a contender for that title).

As Chief Constable Rob Taylor points out: “Facebook has 59 million users, seven million of which live in the UK, so we realised that this was an excellent way of spreading our messages to people on a more personal basis.”

I don’t know who developed the application but if anyone out there knows, then get in touch.