The second stage of our data collection involved analysing the transcripts, final reports and press releases generated by the official inquiries into the policing of the G20 Summit. We also used the Ian Tomlinson Family Campaign website www. In addition, both authors were present for specific time periods during the G20 protests in the City of London on 1 April and the Excel Centre on 2 April.
This enabled first-hand observation of the initial policing operation and the preliminary interactions between the police, protestors, bystanders and the news media. Primary photographic evidence was gathered in the City of London on the morning of 1 April. It is not our intention in this article to present an in-depth discourse or content analysis on the full corpus of G20 news coverage. Rather, we examine the dominant themes and patterns we have identified across reporting of the policing of G More specifically, we seek to analyse the dramatic re-orientation of news media attention, following the death of one citizen, and to explain this re-orientation sociologically in terms of wider transitions in the contemporary information-communications environment.
The G20 demonstrations in the City of London on 1 April provide an important insight into the disruptive impact of citizen journalism upon routinized police—news media relations. They also illustrate the shifting nature of definitional power in the 24—7 news mediasphere. In the countdown to the G20 protests, both the police and the press drew from a well established or default news frame in order to interpret and explain the unfolding events. First, an unprecedented number of public order events were taking place simultaneously across London, including: the arrival of G20 delegations, including US President Barak Obama, all of whom would have to be transferred from official residences to the G20 forum and to official receptions; a state visit to the United Kingdom by the President of Mexico; and an international football match at Wembley.
Second, the number of protestors, and therefore the potential for trouble, could be swelled significantly because of public anger at the handling of the financial crisis. MPS Commander Simon O'Brien clarified for reporters how the police would respond to different kinds of protest: There are groups that by their very ethos won't talk to us.
The groups which enter dialogue with us, we will facilitate [throughout their events] We will not tolerate anyone breaking the law, be it by attacking buildings, people or our officers We are looking to police peaceful protest. We don't talk in terms of riots. If anyone wants to come to London to engage in crime or disorder, they will be met with a swift and efficient policing response. BBC, 30 March 3. At That officer sent two police medics through the cordon line and into St. Michael's Alley where they found a man who had stopped breathing. They called for support at about The officers gave him an initial check and cleared his airway before moving him back behind the cordon line to a clear area outside the Royal Exchange building where they gave him CPR.
The officers took the decision to move him as during this time a number of missiles—believed to be bottles—were being thrown at them. MPS statement, 1 April. Coverage of the G20 protests thus developed into a story of unqualified and intentional protester violence against the forces of law and order and respectable society. Initial reports on the death of Ian Tomlinson, though presented as a story in its own right, were ordered and interpreted within this inferential structure. Portrayed as a tragic and unavoidable death by natural causes, a position confirmed by the IPCC and coroner's report, news reports promoted the image of violent protesters hurling bottles at dutiful police officers who were doing all they could to help a critically ill man in extremely difficult circumstances.
The police perspective was quickly established and seemed stable. However, the MPS's position on Tomlinson's death began to unravel as alternative information came to light. It would be the reinterpretation of the circumstances of Tomlinson's death, on the basis of citizen journalism, that would critically destabilize this initial inferential structure and radically transform how the policing of G20 was interpreted and understood. One of the most noticeable characteristics of the 1 April protests was the sheer density and variety of recording devices being used by professional and citizen journalists, private businesses, demonstrators, the police and passers-by.
Furthermore, because of police containment tactics, police—news media—protester—public interactions took place in extremely close spatial proximity, which simultaneously created a captive audience to surrounding events. The policing of G20 was also being scrutinized by independent monitors in attendance because of concerns about recent public order policing tactics such as those deployed at the Climate Camp in Kent in August The result was a hyper-mediatized, high-surveillance context within which control of the information and communication environment would be difficult to maintain.
As photographs of Ian Tomlinson appeared in the news media and online, witnesses began to emerge, claiming they had seen the man interacting with the police on several occasions. Their testimonies, significantly brought first to the news media rather than the IPCC, challenged the official line that bottles had been thrown at police while they were attending to Tomlinson after his collapse.
It soon transpired that Tomlinson, in attempting to make his way home from work, had in fact come into contact with the police on several occasions prior to collapsing at 7. In a pivotal news media intervention, on 3 April, The Guardian informed City of London Police, who were responsible for conducting the IPCC investigation into the death, that it had obtained timed and dated photographs of Tomlinson lying on the pavement at the feet of riot police.
The next day, the IPCC confirmed that Tomlinson had come into contact with officers prior to his death, but continued to contest reports that he had been assaulted.
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Serious concerns about the policing of G20 were aired across the weekend news media on 4 and 5 April, accompanied by the first calls for a public inquiry. Further concern was expressed over allegations that riot police had used violence to clear the protestor squats and the Climate Camp at Bishopsgate and that numerous officers had concealed their identification numbers. The decisive moment came on 7 April, when The Guardian website broadcast mobile phone footage that appeared to provide clear evidence of police violence against Tomlinson minutes before he collapsed.
It shows Tomlinson walking, hands in pockets, seemingly oblivious of an adjacent group of officers, some dog handlers and others in riot gear. He presents no discernible threat to public order. Without warning, an officer in helmet and balaclava pushes Tomlinson forcefully from behind, knocking him to the ground. When slowed down, the footage captures the officer swiping at Tomlinson's legs with a baton and then pushing him hard in the back. Police stand and watch as passers-by help Tomlinson to a sitting position, where he appears to remonstrate with the officers in question.
He is then helped to his feet, again by passers-by, and is seen walking away. Soon afterwards, he will collapse beyond the view of this camera.
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The footage does not show any extenuating circumstances that might justify the police officer's actions. It was also added to various online news sites and to YouTube. The footage was picked up globally and was by far the most read story on The Guardian 's website, with about , views. It initiated intensive blogging and a letter-writing campaign to parliament. Authenticated, real-time footage of events surrounding Ian Tomlinson's death provided a focus for the growing body of complaints, led by the Tomlinson family, who had now established a campaign website www.
On 8 April, new footage shot from a different angle, retrieved from a broken Channel 4 camera, showed an officer striking at Mr Tomlinson from behind with a baton and then pushing him to the ground. The MPS subsequently confirmed that four officers had come forward in relation to the investigation into the death of Mr Tomlinson. On 8 April, both the Home Secretary, Jacqui Smith, and the MPS Commissioner, Sir Paul Stephenson, acknowledged the need for an independent inquiry and confirmed that one of the officers shown in the footage had been suspended.
The IPCC reversed its decision to allow City of London police to investigate Tomlinson's death and called for more witnesses to come forward and to hand over any footage.
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A second post-mortem was carried out at the request of the Tomlinson family. The case featured heavily across the news media on the weekend of 11 and 12 April. However, on 14 April, the London Evening Standard identified several cameras in the immediate area. The next day, The Guardian was handed more photographs showing Ian Tomlinson interacting with police approximately 15 minutes before he collapsed.
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By now, it had been confirmed that of the complaints lodged with the IPCC, 70 related to claims of excessive police force. On 17 April, the second autopsy established that Tomlinson had died from abdominal haemorrhaging and the MPS confirmed that a Territorial Support Group TSG police officer would be questioned on suspicion of manslaughter. The MPS's problems intensified when footage uploaded to YouTube showed further police violence against a woman attending the 2 April memorial vigil for Mr Tomlinson.
In this footage, Nicola Fisher is seen arguing with an officer before he back-hands her in the face and then when she protests, hits her on the legs with a police baton. The officer's shoulder identification number appears to have been obscured. Fisher was able to amplify her side of the story by selling it to the Daily Express and Daily Star , who, on 17 April, published front-page photographs of her injuries.
She was represented by the PR agent, Max Clifford. On 19 April, the Sunday Times broadcast fresh footage of police officers using batons and shields on protestors. During the following week, as the Home Affairs Committee inquiry into the policing of G20 began to hear evidence, the police attempted to defend their tactics.
http://rd-fond.ru/modules/tort/5048-gde-nayti.php However, these statements had marginal impact on the transforming news agenda. On 22 April, Channel 4 News broadcast a frame-by-frame analysis of events leading up to and including the moment when Ian Tomlinson was struck by a police officer and fell to the ground. The IPCC tried unsuccessfully to secure a court order preventing the broadcast on the basis that it could be prejudicial to its investigation.
And a third post-mortem examination was carried out on Ian Tomlinson, at the request of the lawyers for the officer being questioned in relation to the death. On 24 April, Sky News published a photograph of Ian Tomlinson after his collapse, which appeared to show bruising to his forehead. It was consistent with video footage that captured Tomlinson's head hitting the pavement after being pushed by the police officer. This evidence contradicted the findings of the first inquest. But further, and crucially, this dominant inferential structure was evident in the extensive and highly public official response that asked probing questions about the MPS's public order policing strategy and foregrounded the importance of two media-related phenomena: the need for the MPS to develop more positive police—press relations and the implications of the rise of the citizen journalist for the policing of public events.
The impact of citizen-generated content around the death of Ian Tomlinson extended well beyond establishing the dominant inferential framework that shaped news coverage and public understanding of the G20 protests. The resulting reports acknowledged a successful operation in which upwards of 35, protesters were marshalled by several thousand police officers largely without incident.
Nevertheless, they all expressed concern that the high-profile exposure of police violence, however isolated, could seriously damage public confidence in the police. The changing media environment also featured prominently in discussion of: the poor state of police—news media relations, which generated tensions, frustrations and conflict between professional journalists and on-the-ground officers; the rapid and sophisticated use of multi-media communication technologies by protest groups, which by far surpassed the static communicative capabilities of the police; and the significance of the citizen journalist for intensifying public scrutiny of individual and collective police action and in shaping public perceptions of the police.
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The sheer level of institutional soul-searching and operational reflection that followed G20 is in itself highly significant. The nature and intensity of news coverage of the Ian Tomlinson case, substantiated by real-time citizen journalist footage of this and other incidents of police violence, and reinforced by the internet made the MPS public order policing strategy a live political and policy issue that had to be addressed.
Because of citizen journalism, the operational integrity and institutional authority of the MPS were first of all questioned and then successfully challenged. An official consensus emerged out of the various reviews that, whether the MPS agreed or not, a fundamental overhaul of its public order policing strategy was necessary HMIC News media access is not granted because of who citizen journalists are, but rather because of where they are and what they have.
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The technological ability of citizens to generate news has been accompanied by an equally important attitudinal shift as a new generation of news producers and consumers comes of age: where once citizens were content to be told what the news is, they are now increasingly interested in being part of the production process Gilmour ; Deuze However, the dramatic and collective realignment of news media coverage that followed was by no means guaranteed.
The rise of the citizen journalist has been accompanied, and perhaps encouraged, by a decline in deference to authority and a deterioration of trust in official or elite institutions Fukuyama ; Seldon For about 90 minutes, the vandals damaged banks and coffee shops. No damage total is available yet. In response, the police conducted raids and arrests at the University of Toronto, picking up people who had travelled here from Quebec.