Mobile business suggesting the rioters were rebelling against the

Mobile media is arguably leading to a greater sense of connected presence for some social groups, mobiles create one connected global village (McLuhan, 2003) where everyone is able to connect. Messaging services like the mobile apps WhatsApp, Blackberry messenger and Facebook messenger provide audiences the platform to connect with social groups and communicate as groups through the group chats. The ever-growing use of mobile media to connect creates more moral panics, the panics are predominately created by politicians, newspapers and broadcasting services through their comments on contemporary news issues surrounding mobile media. Throughout this essay, it will be investigated whether mobile media in creating a greater sense of connected presence has influenced social groups in a positive or negative way.
The 2011 riots are one of the more prominent cases of social groups being connected through mobile media, in particular through the use of social media and in particular Blackberry Messenger (BBM). The shooting of Mark Duggan triggered riots across mainly London and other areas of the UK, “The media and politicians created the impression that the riots were orchestrated by ‘Twitter Mobs’ and Blackberry Mobs'” (Fuchs, 2012). The choice of lexis which has negative connotations and implies that there were technical causes and that the social media was that, suggests that the media correlate communication technologies with riots and violence. The riots were as Blond (2011) describes as a “new in that gangs of predominately young unemployed men were able, using new media, to launch a new series of semi-organised disturbances for the purpose, not of protest”. However, the original intention of the riots may not have remained with the spread of the rioters around the country, and through mobile media, the youth saw this as an opportunity to riot and loot businesses. The business looted were not just larger chains but were small business suggesting the rioters were rebelling against the people and not just the original rebellion against the police and government. Young people being predominant associators of the use of mobile phones (Goggin, 2007) and the police believed that the mobile media provided a greater sense of connection for the young social group which did not stick to the original intentions showing a negative side of new media. 
Moreover, messenger services and social media connected rioters as a social group as it allowed them to plan the protests through their mobiles, this implies that the greater sense of connected presence needs more regulation. On the other hand, this could be seen as the government and media institutions creating a moral panic in order for them to gain more control on mobile media. The need for control was further expressed in the newspapers and the suggestions that with surveillance and more regulations by switching the Blackberry Messenger service off the riots could have been controlled (Fuchs, 2012). The mobile was used as a point of connection between rioters, was the point to which a point of disconnection for the police and the government interjected the home secretary at the time Theresa May said social media “have been used to coordinate criminality and stay ahead of the police” (Financial Times, 2011). Costigan and Perry (2012) describe mobile phones as being used in terms of ‘indispensable tactical and organisational tools for any group or organisational tools that wish to mobilise people around a common cause’. The mobile acts as a tactic to organise and for the initial intentions for the rioters to avenge Mark Duggan shooting being the common cause. Overall suggesting that mobile media being a prevalent part of the overall riots shows that mobile media has not influenced social groups in a greater way.
On the contrary, not all use of mobile media, in particular, Twitter had a negative effect and outcomes, as one of the positive effects of social media and mobile media in the riots was the clean up when communities came together. The campaign mainly promoted on Twitter with the #riotcleanup where citizens organised themselves together and brought brooms along to clean the streets of London, whilst sending the message that they are claiming their city back against rioters. Goggin (2007) further debates that mobiles offer coordination of activities and greater independence with peers, the cleanup crew organised themselves without any government help or structural organising all peers communicating and coming together for the community. A Daily Mail article stated, “Communicating on Twitter – the same social network used by the rioters – hundreds gathered in riot-ravaged neighbourhoods” (McDermott, 2011). The newspaper institution suggests that it is not the platform of Twitter that instituted the riots but it is the social group of rioters, this additionally helps to the reduce the moral panic around the social media platform and audiences potential fears around. Also, the institution reporting on the positive side of the rioting made showed that society would not be stopped by the rebellious youths and mobile media can bring communities together. Surrounding new social media the moral panic misrepresents the cultural and emotional dynamics of collective action (Baker, 2011) showing that the banning of BBM would have created more panic and infringes on the public’s civil liberties.
The connection of the riots to social media and new mobile media was the main part in the coverage of the riots by the media, right-wing media, more liberal media, tabloids and broadsheet newspapers. All were adhering to the claims that social media was the main contributor to the organisation, coordination, and planning of the criminality, looting, attacks, and violence of the rioters. Politicians were additionally, leading the claims like David Cameron, Prime Minister in 2011 declared, ‘everyone watching these horrific actions will be struck by how they were organised via social media’ (Briggs, 2012). The prime minister of the country declaring the impact of screen media on the actions of 2011 and constitutes the moral panic among mass receivers due to the high power that Cameron has, suggesting more people will listen to what he had to say. There is no sufficient evidence to confirm a connection between the riots and new social mobile media (Ball and Lewis, 2011). Although there is no concrete evidence to correlate the two together the media representation against the new media shows that the presence created the connection of social groups through the mobile media, it does not have a greater presence but, it is the way media present the mobile media change which affects the way it is maintained. The technology arguably was the main cause of blame and the focus on technology as a solution is the search for control, predictability, and simplicity in a situation of uncertainty and unpredictability that was the riots (Fuchs, 2012). The projection of the blame to technology allowed the police and government to find a slightly easy conclusion gave society a place for them to settle throughout the public outbreak that the riots brought. News articles and media representation labelled the rioters ‘twitter mobs’ and is an expression is a notion of ‘techno-pessimism’ suggesting that new mobile media is platforms that are the cause for negative phenomena (Fuchs, 2012). The technological determinism led to a further dissenting view over the greater sense of connected presence for some social groups that messaging services enabled as BBM is now labelled with the impact of the riot.
In conclusion, mobile media has led to a greater sense of connected presence for some social groups as new media has brought messenger services and social media platforms like Twitter. In the case for the riots, the mobile media brought together the social group of the rebels but also allowed for communities to join together for the clean up of towns after the looting. 


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