Following Russia’s effort to conquer the web, Interior Ministry has launched its own YouTube channel.
So far the ministry has posted three short videos designed to raise public awareness about internet fraud, child safety and transportation-related crimes.
“If we reveal the criminal schemes in time, people will be alert and better prepared for emergency situations,” a police spokesman said.
Some say, however, the police have a secondary motive – namely, to distract the public from YouTube videos showing cops behaving badly.
For example, this past March a Russian policeman posted a YouTube video accusing his superiors of abuse of power and corruption. On Tuesday the officer was found guilty of libel and ordered to pay compensation to his former bosses.
The number of similarly-themed YouTube footage has risen in other countries as well. In June 2010, an American named Emily Good made national headlines when iPhone footage she shot went viral after it was posted to YouTube.
In the clip, Good is chastised by a police officer for filming a routine traffic stop outside of her home in Rochester, New York. In the clip Good claims that she is allowed to film from her own front yard, but the arresting officer, Mario Masic, insists that she retreat into her home or face arrest. Good refuses, and her arrest is then caught on tape.