Just in case Reddit’s sense of self-importance wasn’t inflated enough, the online community has taken to playing FBI dress-up, creating a subreddit called /r/findbostonbombers that’s “dedicated to helping find the bomber(s)” behind Monday’s tragedy. Since it started late last night, the subreddit has already become a repository for out-there conspiracy theories and Imgur-hosted “photo dumps” that scrupulously analyze every “clue” bored Redditors can find. (Look, this guy’s going through a bag!)
The FBI did ask Marathon attendees to send in any footage they might have of the event to help investigators track down the bomber, but somehow we don’t think creating a subreddit to accuse innocent people of terrorism was exactly what they had in mind. While their impulse to help is admirable, the “evidence” Redditors have uncovered so far really only adds to the confusion and misinformation spreading in the wake of the tragedy–not to mention all of the horrifying racism cropping up in the subreddit.
Plus, these aren’t exactly expert FBI agents. One user has already dissected how bombs function, concluding that the remote-controlled bombs are “chilling stuff.” Several others have taken to zooming in on the brand of the black backpack (and where it was placed) that they believe possibly contained the bomb.
However, Reddit can’t seem to come to a consensus about who the bomber is, as several of the posts implicate different people who happen to be in close proximity to the explosion. It’s almost like it was a crowded public event.
There’s always room for more Internet horseshit, we suppose.