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  • Very interesting indeed. It seems the protest has spread now, people are checking in to The Standing Rock Reservation now to confuse the police. I just noticed 8 of my FB-friends are there now, all but one are in Sweden.

    • Indeed. There’s been quite a bit of chatter from the usual blogs and news sources. The NYT did a piece that included this useful background info:
      “Checking in to protests has been a favorite pastime of online observers who can’t be where the protest is but want to spread the word.
      Perhaps the most notable example is the so-called Twitter Revolution during protests of Iran’s 2009 presidential elections. People changed their Twitter avatars to a green overlay and switched their locations to Tehran in hopes of confusing law enforcement officials trying to track down activists and bloggers.”
      (http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/01/us/why-your-facebook-friends-are-checking-into-standing-rock.html?_r=0)

      Snopes claims the effectiveness of checking-in as a tactic in social-media sparring is “unproven”, at least in this case. They added, “Neither the Morton County’s Sheriff’s Department nor representatives for a large camp believed that the viral Facebook status meme was impeding law enforcement activities (although the protesters said that they appreciated the solidarity). Sacred Stone Camp maintained a fund to which supporters could donate money to support their legal defense. Although the meme drew attention to the issue, it didn’t necessarily draw material assistance.” (http://www.snopes.com/facebook-check-in-at-standing-rock/)

      Even if it’s ‘unproven’ it takes little effort. Whether or not supporters are able to spar with and/or confuse police, it is still a creative way to show solidarity. It sticks out a little more than a simple “like.”

      Thanks for the feedback!

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