James Karl Buck Uses Twitter To Get Out Of Jail

Was checking my mail earlier morning when this headline from CNN caught my attention: “Freed man now uses Twitter to help friend“. Here’s a short summary and some excerpts from the article that I read from CNN.

james karl buck
James Karl Buck

James Karl Buck, an American student working on a photography project in Egypt for his master’s thesis was arrested together with his interpreter while taking photographs of local anti-government protests over low wages and rising food prices. He was able to get out of jail with the help of Twitter*.

James Karl Buck was released from a Mahalla jail after sending a one-word blog post from his cell phone through the Twitter Web site. The message — “Arrested” — alerted all of his friends on the site of his detention.

When his college found out about the situation, they hired a lawyer who then got him out of prison. Now that he’s a free man, Buck is using his Twitter network (611 followers as of writing) to help free his friend Mohammed Maree.

mohammed maree
Mohammed Maree

“He’s only in prison … because he wanted to help me,” Buck said. “Now I’ve got to repay the favor.”

Mohammed Maree was an Egyptian veterinary student who offered to be his interpreter and help him with his project. Maree is still being detained in prison as of this moment.

CNN’s full story here

‘m currently following Jam

If you’d like to get updates regarding this story and/or join in helping free Mohammed Maree from jail, you can follow James Buck on Twitter – http://twitter.com/jamesbuck or on his personal blog Journalism is Not a Crime.

*Twitter is a social-networking blog site that allows users to send status updates, or “tweets,” from cell phones, instant messaging services and Facebook in less than 140 characters.

*photos taken from CNN.com

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  1. wow thats incredible, being british this wasn’t even in our news but i wish it had been. Another reason to love twitter lol x

  2. @vanjohn – You mean ask the readers via poll? I can do that but not right now. But if you ask me, both are useful. In my case, I use Twitter to network with other bloggers and promote my blog. Everytime I publish a new post, it gets published by TwitterFeed as a tweet and becomes my status on Twitter. So everyone who follows me on Twitter sees it. As for Plurk, most of my Filipino online friends and bloggers are there so its like a place to hang out and chat. :D

  3. @Mahalia – I know, times change fast and the advancement of technology is very rapid. Who would’ve even imagined something like this happening and how Twitter got a person out of jail. Thanks for sharing. :)

  4. Fifteen years ago, this would not be possible. My how times change. Good for him he brought his cellfone along. If it were in the days of our lolas, it would have taken years before any word of his arrest. And a few more years for a lawyer to post bond. :wink:

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  6. It’s good thing that there are still some people who would take such kind of risk in order to expose some things that the world should also know. I hope that he would be able to help his friend as well to get out from prison. Nice blog.

  7. @bluepanjeet – Yeah, that’s true and like what Ade mentioned, its good Twitter wasn’t down when it happened.

    (Regarding the PBA this year, my blog isn’t one of the finalists and I don’t even know if it was nominated. Thanks anyways for your support.)

  8. bluepanjeetsays:

    good thing his twitter is wired to his mobile… proof that today’s technology is powerful as ever

    happy weekend bro!

    (PS just checking out your PBA nomination, have no news about it, keep me posted if you need power vote… im behind you!) :wink:

  9. @Manila Freelancer – I’m sure the world would be totally different if the Internet wasn’t invented. A lot of our technology and lifestyle were created because of the Internet. :)

  10. @homebuddy – It helps to be tech or Internet savvy. Yeah, good thing Twitter wasn’t down and its good that the police didn’t confiscate his cellphone so he was able to use it.

  11. Good for him. I only hope that his friend will be able to be released as well. It is so lame that we have to be scared of places arresting you for no reason. Especially just taking a picture. I like how new technologies like Twitter are able to help people out like that.

  12. @Hussein – That’s a good idea. Maybe you can make a post about that on your blog? The only problem I see is that many Filipinos are not that tech savvy to use Twitter. Thanks for sharing though! :)

  13. @littlelight – I think the time spent is not really the issue but on how kids use it. I guess its okay to spend a lot of time in the Internet as long as they use it to actually learn something educational or something that can help them, including Twitter. :D

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