If you do not have a pre-teen or teenage girl in your household, you may be forgiven for not having heard about the Justin Bieber Twitter debacle.
Justin Bieber (for those who haven’t been paying attention to MuchMusic or TMZ) is the 16 year old teen pop sensation from Stratford, Ontario. He originally gained popularity at the age of 13 with videos he posted himself (with his mother’s help) on YouTube, garnering 10 million views. He was then signed by pop/R&B artist Usher, and has crossed over into new heights of mainstream stardom.
Last November a crowd gathering for a Bieber appearance in a suburban New York mall became unruly, so the police decided to cancel the appearance. The police officers asked James Roppo of Island Def Jam Records (Bieber’s record label) and his manager Scott (Scooter) Braun to send out Twitter messages telling everyone the event had been cancelled to help disperse the crowd. After an hour, no message had been sent, and the crowd became increasingly unruly, culminating in five people being taken to hospital with minor injuries. Braun finally sent two Twitter messages after ninety minutes saying the event had been cancelled, causing the crowd to disperse almost immediately.
Roppo has been arrested, and Braun finally surrendered to police in New York on Wednesday.
This may be the first time anyone has been charged for not sending a Twitter message. According to a CBC report:
“My mother and I are 100 per cent behind my manager,” 16-year-old Juno-nominated Bieber said in a statement Wednesday night.
“He is someone of high moral character and principle. The decisions he made that day were to protect the safety of myself and my fans and I am very thankful to have someone in my life who watches over me the way Scooter does.”
Bieber was seen last week wearing a “Free Scooter” T-shirt in support of his manager:
Bieber defends manager over unruly crowd incident, CBC News (March 25, 2010)
Justin Bieber news, Google News
The Justin Bieber Phenomenon – Social Media on Steroids, Sheila Shayon, Huffington Post (March 25, 2010)