‘Facebook parties’ are a new phenomenon within the digital era. Parties which are meant to be a private event, but which are accidentally put on Facebook as an public event. Last year in Germany’s Hamburg a so-called X party was enjoyed by a 1500 crowd, which at first started out as an innocent Sweet Sixteen. This past week in the Netherlands a house party was renamed to an X party and soon 30.000 people RSVP’d (nu.nl).
While this wasn’t bad enough for the 15 year old girl hosting, the media attention has been enormously. Every show reported on the X Party in Haren, and Project X became a media hype. The reporting didn’t stop there: Reporters of several news stations were at the site and a production company launched a small unmanned helicopter with camera’s to live stream the party. How far do we need to go?
The party took place last Saturday and one could not speak of a party. The hurdle party goers turned into rioters and many damage has done to the town. The finger of blame is pointed at Facebook and other social media, for the organizing effect these websites can have. Others claim the amount of media attention is the evildoer (nu.nl).
I agree with the latter. The amount of attention this party has been given in the media is astonishing. An event on Facebook does not call up 30000 people to riot, national reporting about a so-called project X, ‘the biggest party of the year’, will. Reports also show the two days before the party, around the time the media picked up on this topic in a large sense, the majority of party goers RSVP’d and had the intention to attend. The media created a hype, and this event would not have be of this extent if it wasn’t for the media. The riots are done by the idiots starting them, but for the national event this Project X turned into, I point my finger at the traditional media.