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Tags are what WordPress calls is keywords. I attach a small number of tags to every post to help people navigate between content with the same keywords. Tags may be people (David Gauke say), organisations (The Howard League, Revolving Doors Agency), themes (women offenders, homelessness) or specific items (heroin, cocaine, ROTL). If you’re looking to research a particular issue, they can be invaluable.

Digital Engagement

Police and Social Media – where next?

This is the last in a series of posts based on the recent COMPOSITE report on police use of social media across Europe. One of the interesting realisations I’ve made in writing these posts is the constant evidence of how British police are leading the way in Europe in their adoption and effective use of social media. Mike Downes keeps a watching brief on UK police use of social media and found that between January and February this year, there was more than a 10% increase in the numbers of people following police Twitter accounts bring the total number of followers to 1,041,850.

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Digital Engagement

Social media is critical to police IT systems dealing with newsworthy issues

This is the eighth in a series of posts based on the recent COMPOSITE report on police use of social media across Europe.   Hold the front page Crime has always been front page news. Always sold newspapers. The advent of TV – remember the real time coverage of OJ Simpson’s arrest – accelerated the speed with which news spread: And social media has ensured that bad news goes global in minutes – as anyone following

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Digital Engagement

Police use social media to leverage the wisdom of the crowd

This is the fifth in a series of posts based on the recent COMPOSITE report on police use of social media across Europe.   The Wisdom of the crowd The last two posts in this series have examined the widespread take-up of social media by police forces across Europe in order to communicate more effectively with the public. This post focuses on the benefits of this approach. Once police have established a strong social media

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Digital Engagement

Police use social media to communicate directly with citizens

This is the fourth in a series of posts based on the recent COMPOSITE report on police use of social media across Europe.   Using social media to push information direct to the public The COMPOSITE report found that many European police forces had taken the opportunities provided by social media to disseminate information directly to their target audiences. Many had eagerly embraced the chance to get their exact message across without the press as

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Social Media Innovation

Social Media and Criminal Justice Policy Exchange

This blog post is a straight plug to encourage readers to engage in a new initiative launched jointly by: Professor Paul Senior of Sheffield Hallam University who tweets as @yorkhull and Associate Professor Julian Buchanan of the Institute of Criminology at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand – @julianbuchanan They have set up a series of interlinked initiatives to explore the growing use of social media for debating criminal justice policy and are seeking to test

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Digital Engagement

Curating online content is a great way to develop your digital footprint

What is content curation? Did you ever think there might be too much information on the internet? When’s the last time you did a Google search that didn’t return tens of thousands of results? To profit from this overload of information we need two main skills: Crap detection – working out what is reliable and what is (accidentally or on purpose) not Content curation Curating online content is quite similar to curating an exhibition in

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Why I Tweet

Livening up your Tweets with multimedia (Probation Wednesday #9)

As I have said before many times in this series, the best way to build a Twitter following is to tweet about interesting things in an interesting way. One of the ways of livening up your tweets and adding variety is by the use of multi-media – or, more simply, putting pictures or video in your tweets. This has always been possible on Twitter but has become much more attractive since the last Twitter upgrade

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Digital Engagement

Detection and arrest: in search of the invisibility vibe

“An invisible man can rule the world”, says Claude Rains starring in the first movie version of The Invisible Man. I’ve been thinking a lot about the pros and cons of being invisible, or at least anonymous, over the last week or so. Offenders have always  sought to hide from the law and police officers to expose them. The development of fingerprinting, DNA analysis and ubiquitous CCTV coverage have all marked leaps forward in detection

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What does the probation service actually do?

Next month sees the broadcast of a new three-part drama on BBC1. Public Enemies, written by Tony Marchant, features the story of 28 year old Eddie (Daniel Mays) who is released from prison after serving ten years for murder. He attempts to settle back into his old community – a community that doesn’t want him. One of the few people he can talk to is his probation officer, Paula (Anna Friel), a woman who’s only

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