Threats in the comments on Periscope make it difficult

In this time of evolving technologies, we all try to keep pertinent and stay in our lanes for information.

On social media, it’s hard to keep up with the new platforms. And basically impossible to keep up with the live-broadcast platforms. During the Republican National Convention (RNC) in Cleveland, we had all kinds of threats pop up. One of them is displayed below.


Let’s break this down for a minute.

This screenshot is on the social media platform is Periscope. Periscope is a live broadcast streaming app that is real-time 720p video and audio. So all the comments shown above have to be typed by users into the broadcast in real time. Which means it wasn’t a scheduled post or timed post. No automation.

As you can see, a direct threat of “we gonna kill trump” from @Mexhiee was posted to the comments live on periscope.

An easy search on Twitter (remember Twitter/Periscope are associated) – will find that there are no users that have the handle @Meexhiee. Using Twitter’s native search bar, you can see that the term “Meexhiee” was only used once in February 2013.


Remember, people can create a periscope account and not create a Twitter account (Periscope only sign-up verification will be your phone number with a confirmation code send via SMS. Additionally, you can also start an account and then quickly delete it too).

Yes, indeed it isn’t as easy as Googling “Meexhiee” or going to Wikipedia for an easy search.

Remember, social media is only one part of the puzzle when gathering information.

For those Public Information Officers (PIOs) monitoring live streaming social media, it is a time suck to have to intently watch each periscope broadcast, even with multiple screens, for specific comments and then have to screen shot the actual comment in question. Even worse, if you are doing real-time assessment and threat action ops, your time is now even more limited in sending the right information to the Operations Section Chief (OSC), SWAT Team, or Quick Reactionary Force (QRF) for immediate intervention.

Stepping back, there are “social media experts” out there that claim to have found the magical tweet that saved a life, the survivor who is buried in the rubble, basically the diamond in the rough. Know the differences between “experts” with showman ship vs expertise with field experience.

Don’t be fooled by the pizzaz and showmanship, learn by real practitioners who have been there, done that.

@rusnivek

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