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Fail: NYPD Photo Contest on Twitter Triggers Huge Backlash

Image: A seemingly innocuous call to action by the New York City Police Department backfired in extraordinary fashion Tuesday
A New York City police officer runs over a National Lawyers Guild observer as Occupy Wall Street demonstrators march through the streets near Wall Street, on Oct. 14, 2011, in New York. Mary Altaffer / AP file

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A seemingly innocuous call to action by the New York City Police Department backfired in extraordinary fashion Tuesday.

In a tweet, the NYPD asked Twitter users to share pictures of them posing with a police officer with the hashtag "myNYPD." The original tweet may give a sense of what the NYPD wanted:

The responses came fast and furious — but they were likely not what the police department had in mind.

In a flurry of digital defiance, scores of users uploaded images appearing to show potential police brutality and other unflattering behavior.

A few respondents uploaded friendly photographs. But many of the photo submissions were decidedly antagonistic.

In a statement, the NYPD said it is "creating new ways to communicate effectively with the community."

"Twitter provides an open forum for an uncensored exchange and this is an open dialogue good for our city," the NYPD said.

— Daniel Arkin

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