Social media has become a key component of police efforts to achieve public safety goals. To be effective, police must establish guidance on the best way to employ this tool in differing circumstances. Social media crisis communication guidelines for police departments have received little attention to date. Social media can support police in the successful dissemination of time-critical information and hinder the spread of rumors while aiming to remain as responsive as possible. Police departments, as the main formal authorities for establishing safety and security, take on enormous responsibility in management of crises such as terrorist attacks or shooting rampages. This paper conducts a multi-method case study of a 2016 shooting rampage event in Munich that resulted in the Munich police department receiving high praise. We answer three research questions about how social media, and particularly Twitter, played a crucial role in the crisis’ mitigation. In addition, we show the aftereffects of the crisis on social media use by the police department and depict how public reaction to shared content increased and changed during, and then after, the shooting rampage. We conclude the paper by documenting the implicit social media successful practices deployed by the Munich police during this emergency.
Akkaya, Cigdem; Fedorowicz, Jane; and Krcmar, Helmut, (2019). "SUCCESSFUL PRACTICES FOR USING SOCIAL MEDIA BY POLICE DEPARTMENTS: A CASE STUDY OF THE MUNICH POLICE". In Proceedings of the 27th European Conference on Information Systems (ECIS), Stockholm & Uppsala, Sweden, June 8-14, 2019. ISBN 978-1-7336325-0-8 Research Papers.