Cambridge Police Announce Updates to Automated Tweets

Feedback from followers leads to more location information, other edits


3/18/2013

A month after launching an innovative new social media program to share information with the community, the Cambridge Police Department is announcing an update to its automated, real-time crime tweets based on follower feedback.

After hearing from followers who raised concerns over street name locations being too broad and suggesting other minor edits, the department has updated its program to include more specific address information, down to the 100 block of a call. 

Date/timestamp information has also been shortened to use fewer characters, and capitalization has been minimized.

Tweets will still consist of a time stamp, the type of incident, and will also contain the language “report of possible” at the beginning of each tweet.  This is used to indicate that the call dispatchers received was reporting a possible crime which may or may not be confirmed upon officers’ arrival.

An example of a new tweet would be:

  • “23:43 Report of possible LARCENY IN PROGRESS at 2XX MT AUBURN ST in #CambMA”

The above will inform followers of the @CambridgePolice twitter account that at 11:43 p.m. Cambridge Police received and were responding to a report of a possible larceny in progress at or near an address on the 200 block of Mt. Auburn Street in Cambridge.

The department’s automated tweets have generated interest from other departments in the region and across the country.  Since the launch of the program, the department has gained nearly 1,500 new followers, helping the department reach a follower count of over 5,000.

All calls for service and arrests will continue to be available in the Daily Public Log, posted on the department’s website each business day.

Cambridge Police would like to remind residents that social media is not to be used to report crimes or emergencies to the police.  The @CambridgePolice Twitter account will not be monitored outside of business hours, and those requiring an immediate response to a public safety issue should always dial 9-1-1.

Those interested in receiving real-time tweets with crime and other information from the Cambridge Police Department should follow @CambridgePolice on Twitter at www.twitter.com/CambridgePolice.

A complete list of incidents which will be tweeted is available here.

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Cambridge Police Department

Robert C. Haas
Commissioner

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