A couple weeks ago we had the tragedy in Oslo, Norway, in which Google+ played an integral part in updating people on breaking news from the scene of the awful attacks. Google+ is getting tested again now that another breaking news story is under way. The London riots which started three days after a police shooting, initially began in Tottenham, and spread to areas outside of London.
Google+ has been used by many to spread the news, and make sure people stay away from the chaotic areas of London. Rebecca Woodhead has been giving updates from all over London today, and in fact, just moments ago, posted the following message to her Google+ circles:
EVACUATE THE AREA AROUND FIRE AT CLAPHAM!!
Breaking news. The shop contains pressurised helium tanks. Get away.
About ten minutes prior, she also posted the following:
Clapham – life threatening situation. People screaming. Big building up in flames. Person on TV saying she hopes nobody is inside. No fire engines available. Fire’s out of control. Only a few police. Don’t know what to do. No fire fighters available.
Benjamin Cohen, a technology correspondent for Channel 4 News, in the Unite Kingdom, also is live on the streets posting on Google+ as news breaks. He recently posted several images, and the following few sentences, in what is obviously a tense situation for him.
From what I understand (obviously locked up at home round the corner). Gangs are charging at police on Chalk Farm Road.
The Sainsbury’s and Evans cycles have been looted/ smashed (according to what I’ve heard) and there are a load of police at Morrisons.
My friend by the station says that he can hear stuff being smashed. I’m hearing quite a bit of shouting from my living room.
I’m v scared to be honest although the kids that were playing with some scaffolding on the corner of my street (and right by my car) seem to have gone.
Update: According to another local- there are a lot of girls about in the gangs. Lots of kids on BMX
There are probably several others out there on the streets of London, to follow, however these two people are a great start. We hope that both Benjamin and Rebecca stay safe. Please feel free to comment below and add any additional reporters that may be on the scene.