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Book Shows How Gangs Are Using Social Media

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A Man Uses A Computer Mouse. (AP Photo)

A Man Uses A Computer Mouse. (AP Photo)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — A new book spells out how Chicago area street gangs are using social media to plot and carry out their dirty work.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports, the new volume is an update on The Gang Book, first published six years ago by the Chicago Crime Commission.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports

Among the newest information is how street gangs use some of the very same social media sites we all use, but to stir up trouble and intimidate.

“The whole social media thing, we’ve got actually, like, screen prints of conversations between gang members, so it’s kind of neat that people will see how these young men are actually using this to communicate with each other, and I think that will be a good takeaway,” said Chicago Crime Commission Deputy Director Jody Weis. “And you know what? At the end of the day, if we can learn something new, it will make us better at combating this problem.”

The Gang Book also includes plenty of information on all Chicago area street gangs and sub-factions, including mapping out each gang’s turf.

It was developed to be helpful not only to gang investigators, but also to parents, teachers and business owners who are seeking to learn about Chicago street gangs.

In all, there are about 70 to 100 gangs in the Chicago area, with a total aggregate membership of 70,000 to 125,000, according to the Crime Commission.

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