Burroughs Adding Machine

Social justice, arts and politics, life in New York City

Twittering at G-20 Can Land You in Jail

G20 Summit Protests

Or so it seems for Elliot Madison. The 41 year-old social worker sent tweets to his pals during the G-20 protests in Pittsburgh. Apparently, Madison was a part of grassroots group called the Tin Can Comms Collective. Madison’s tweets described protests and related events. As reported by the NYT:

Many of those messages tracked police movements. One read: “SWAT teams rolling down 5th Ave.” Another read: “Report received that police are ‘nabbing’ anyone that looks like a protester / Black Bloc. Stay alert watch your friends!”

Now, F.B.I. agents have arrested him for “hindering apprehension or prosecution, criminal use of a communication facility and possession of instruments of crime.” The federal authorities raided Madison’s home and confiscated equipment.

As Gawker reports:

Investigators are taking this thing super seriously: they raided Madison’s Queens apartment and removed antiquated items, like “newspapers,” an “address book,” whatever that is, and a picture of Lenin. Anarchists are so predictable.

A frightening proposition: Big Brother may be monitoring those 140-character messages you mindlessly send while waiting in line at the RMV. I’ve blogged in the past about the dangers of public life on the Internet. Ever wondered who’s following your Tweets and tracking your public information, and for what purpose?


Filed under: government, technology, , , , , ,

One Response

  1. Frank says:

    Scary proposition indeed! Hopefully they will start to monitor my tweets. They’d learn about beer, Dallas Cowboys football, and the FairTax. 🙂

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About Me

Ricco Villanueva Siasoco is a Manhattan-based writer and non-profit manager. More


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