A 16-year-old girl from Haren, the Netherlands, forgot to set her Facebook birthday invitation to private and got a few thousand more guests than she was expecting. And if that wasn’t enough, the revelers also started a riot in the small Dutch town.
Why don’t these young school girls ever learn? Jut last year a similar event took place after a German girl forgot to make her Facebook birthday invitation private and got 1,500 unwanted guests. Police were able to contain the crowd back then, but on September 21st 2012, things really got out of control in Haren. After the young girl posted her public invite on Facebook, her friends started sharing it with their friends, sites started posting about it, and soon the whole thing grew out of proportion to the point where 30,000 users confirmed their presence to the event known as Project X Haren. This was turning into way more than the girl had planned for her big day, so the authorities were alerted. The party was cancelled, and the police appealed to Facebook revelers, asking them not to descend on Haren. Despite their best efforts, at least 3,000 people from all over the Netherlands turned up, and they were not the most peaceful bunch either.
The girl who posted the invitation fled her home, and hundreds of riot policemen were detached to keep the party animals from vandalizing the small town with a population of just 19,000. But the revelers wearing “Project X Haren” t-shirts, after the recently released “Project X” film, about a party that grows out of control, didn’t feel like going home, and since they couldn’t attend the birthday celebrations, they decided to throw their own party, by throwing stones and bottles at the police, looting local shops, vandalizing and setting fire to cars, and damaging street signs and lamp posts. At least 36 people were injured, including a police officer, and 20 arrests were made. “An incident like the one in Haren last night is unprecedented in the Netherlands,” Oscar Dros, Haren’s chief of police, said.
People always say Facebook is a powerful tool, if used right. I guess it’s pretty powerful if used wrong, as well…