Investigators of this week's Boston Marathon bombings asked the public for help in identifying possible suspects. Redditors responded.
An ad hoc forum on social news site Reddit is poring over photos for clues. What could have been a mess of wild theories and accusations is actually a well-organized effort aimed at helping authorities.
Early this morning (April 17), a call went up on Reddit to consolidate the bombing investigation on a single subreddit: findbostonbombers. The subsite has four moderators who are keeping close tabs on posts and adding helpful information.
Moderators also have established rules for contributors. For instance, nothing that contains identifying information about a person shown in a crime-scene photo should be posted. Instead, that information should be sent directly to the FBI.
"We want to help and are doing the best we can, but we must remember where helping ends and the job of professionals begins," moderator Rather_Confused wrote.
Reddit users are, in large part, anonymous and choose unconventional, and often humorous, screen names -- which can make their posts seem less credible. But ignore the names, and focus on the posts -- you'll find that many of these Redditors know their stuff, especially when it's related to technology.