With a rise in Twitter threats recently, many members of the public are wondering just how gravely they should be taken. After 9/11, there was heightened anxiety pertaining to threats connected to planes. These days, others may be taking these threats in stride since there have been numerous threats since then that didn't exactly pan out, especially within the realm of social media.
Just as some have liquid courage after consuming an excessive amount of alcohol, individuals on Twitter have what we like to call “keyboard courage”. If you ever have the opportunity to survey any large organization’s twitter page, (particularly banks or cable companies) you will notice a variance of foul language, angry slurs, and heated debates regarding customer service or meaningless rants about the celebrity who endorses them. However, these “I am about to come take out this company” statements just don’t seem as prevalent when housed within Twitter. Still, they are taken seriously by authorities.
Last Tuesday, a Twitter handle produced bomb threats on 6 different planes. Each of which involved the locations of Chicago, San Francisco, and Charlotte. There was another Twitter account that named on extremist group in particular as the originators of a threat to a flight from Los Angeles to Chicago. Another handle warned there was a passenger on board that was armed, accompanied by a bomb on a flight to Miami. At least nine more threats would follow these in the days to come.
Since these accounts are house by the social media site of Twitter, something could definitely be done to help the federal investigation into each of these cases right? A spokesperson for the website simply stated the privacy regulations in regard to commenting on the content of the three accounts. However, the FBI is still looking into these cases vehemently. They feel it’s better to be safe than sorry when it comes to any terroristic threats within our country.