Analytics ninja Sean Power lost his laptop in
Brooklyn Soho – it was stolen, although it may not have been stolen by the man who had it – and using Prey he was able to track it to a particular bar near City Hall in downtown Manhattan.
Sean got some snaps of the guy and his browsing habits and asked that some of his Twitter followers visit the bar to wait for the police. When the police refused to come because Powers had not filed a report the Twooters took the matter into their own hands. Again, to be clear, the man who bought it probably just paid the thief for the laptop in what we can only assume is good faith.
In the end, one of Sean’s Twootfriends, Nick Reese went and grabbed it, resulting in smiles all around. No charges were filed because the Internet doled out the vigilante justice – Internet style. Read the whole wild Twitter-story here and seriously, thieves, don’t steal laptops anymore.
Where does this sort of stuff put us now? Sean got his laptop back and the “new owner” gave it up without a fight. We’re at a point where it’s easy to find lost electronics online and we have enough friends (read “a mob”) to go and get the stuff for us. The problem I expect to see is when the folks who stole the items aren’t right in the head and the first person gets hurt after a struggle. It’s a dangerous – but satisfying – game.
Also, please install Prey on your laptop. It works, it’s great, and it’s free.