Technology, Crime, and the Biebs

By now, it’s old news that youthful pop star Justin Bieber was arrested early one recent morning for allegedly drag racing on the street and driving under the influence. There’s been lots of response over the Internet, of course — from people making fun of the teen star to those who look at how a non-celebrity, non-citizen would be treated after being arrested (with probable deportation, etc).

What no one is talking about is how technology is playing a role in this (and other) transgressions.

1. Well, speed

Of course we know that the interwebs went into warp speed when the reports first started coming out about the singer. People were tweeting about it, Buzzfeed and TMZ were reporting, and TMZ even got “footage” of the arrest.

It was crappy footage; you couldn’t see anyone clearly, just a bunch of cop cars and a yellow Lamborghini. Within hours, the mug shot was released, and immediately people started comparing him to photos of Miley Cyrus.

It’s the hair, you know, although people seem to forget that the sometimes-controversial and always-interesting Miley has never had to have her mug shot taken. Just saying.

2. Setting bond

The star was processed and held, and even given fancy red prison clothes. He appeared for his bond hearing … sort of. His lawyer was in the courtroom, the prosecuting attorney was in the courtroom, the judge was in the courtroom — and Biebs was Skyping in from the detention facility.

His bond was set, and he didn’t say a word. But really, Skype? Evidently it’s not uncommon, and it helps cut down on the transportation cost of getting the person to the courtroom for a five-minute hearing. Interesting and effective.

3. Technology and his past

The Bieb is famous for using technology over the course of his career. He got “discovered” via YouTube and quickly gathered more Twitter followers than any other person on the planet.

But he has used technology to get himself into a bit of trouble as well. He used to fire back at accusations laid against him via Twitter, acting as though he needed to defend himself and explain whatever situation landed him in hot water. This ceased after his tour stops in London, probably because his handlers told him to quit it, because it was just making him look worse.

He got caught urinating in a mop bucket at a club, and the video went viral; an alleged Brazilian prostitute shot footage of the sleeping star; and in his most recent trouble with a quarrelsome neighbor, his phone was seized to see if there was evidence of him bragging about egging the neighbor’s house.

So far, the singer has stayed off of his social media accounts since the latest arrest, and that’s probably on the advice from his lawyers.

Stayed tuned to see how technology is going to continue to affect laws, arrests, and the justice system from here on out. The times, they are a-changin’.

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Osho is Tech blogger. He contributes to the Blogging, Gadgets, Social Media and Tech News section on TecheHow.