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NYPD Twitter Photo Campaign Backfires

(Photo Courtesy: Neil / MGN Online)

(Photo Courtesy: Neil / MGN Online)

NEW YORK (WGGB) — What was supposed to be a opportunity for community outreach by the New York City Police Department appears to have backfired.

City residents and tourists alike take pictures all the time of themselves with NYPD officers.

In an effort to bring those pictures together, the department recently started a campaign for people to share those photos on Twitter, using #myNYPD.

Well, people did begin to post pictures.

Many of them were of people, smiling and showing positive encounters with officers.

However, many more began to flood the NYPD Twitter account with pictures showing alleged excessive force and aggressive behavior.

NYPD Deputy Chief Kim Royster told WABC-TV that “Twitter provides an open forum for an uncensored exchange and this is an open dialogue good for our city.”

Commissioner William Bratton also said Wednesday that while he was caught off-guard by the harsh response to the community outreach attempt, he says there are no plans to abandon social media.

Experts questioned Wednesday how the NYPD didn’t anticipate the potential public relations debacle.

One said other large organizations have seen hashtags become “bashtags.”

Royster also explained to WABC-TV that open exchange does offer users an opportunity to post less-than-flattering photos of the department.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.

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