An epic NYPD hashtag fail, real news from Facebook and a new look for Ronald McDonald | This Week in Social Media

The NYPD asks for photos of cops, gets what they asked for

This week, the New York City Police Department learned the hard way that you can’t control the conversation on social media. The department launched a campaign using the hashtag #MyNYPD to encourage fans to share photos of themselves with New York’s finest. Somewhat unsurprisingly, users soon took over the hashtag with photos of alleged police brutality—including scenes from Occupy Wall Street protests. The NYPD isn’t the only force feeling the backlash, either. Local variations of the hashtag are now being used in cities across the U.S. to call police to task for what users consider excessive force, or other bad behavior.

Newsfeed, meet Newswire

Facebook has partnered with news agency Storyful to launch FB Newswire, a service intended to help journalists discover credible news being shared by users on the network. While available to the public, the service is aimed at news media looking for content posted by eyewitnesses to newsworthy events. Given that Facebook now boasts over 1 billion mobile users around the world, there should be plenty of information to sift through.

Ronald McDonald (kind of) joins Twitter

McDonald’s finally gave long-time spokesman Ronald McDonald a hashtag and a makeover this week. The colorful clown won’t get his own Twitter handle just yet, but the chain is looking to integrate content centering on the familiar character into their social channels to boost slumping sales. Because if there’s one thing everyone loves, it’s clowns, right?