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Police Contemplated Blocking Twitter During London Riots

The Chief of the Metropolitan Police in London said that the department considered shutting down micro-blogging website Twitter when the riots were raging on, but could not do so because they were legally handicapped.

According to British daily the Telegraph, the acting commissioner of the Met Police Tim Godwin revealed, while addressing the Home Affairs Committee, that the department had contemplated several times shutting down social networking website Twitter temporarily.

"I contemplated seeking the authority to switch it off. The legality of that is very questionable. We did not request that it was turned off but it is something we are pursuing as part of our investigative strategy," the commissioner told the members of the committee.

Godwin also added that top officials from the police department are in conversation with the government to decide if the necessary changes be drawn into law, under which the Police has the right to have a certain influence over social networking services during the time of crises.

The head of the committee, Keith Vaz also added that social media has led to propagating riots and demonstrations across the country at very short notice, and giving new powers to the Police could be an option for consideration.