Little Tweet Causes Giant Riot at Electric Daisy Carnival Premiere

By Jennifer Bergen |

Twitter is a great tool for learning about events happening in your city. For example, the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream food truck can tweet its location, and, within minutes, will have swarms of people ready to eat their delicious treats. It’s nice to know about things you’d otherwise be in the dark about, but you have to realize that every single person following the Ben & Jerry’s on Twitter also has the “inside scoop.” This can end badly when you turn the corner to where the food truck is located and see a line of 100 people who beat you to the punch.

Now, let’s take the Ben & Jerry’s truck scenario and magnify that. DJ Kaskade, a very popular DJ with over 94,000 followers, tweeted yesterday about a block party being held outside of Grauman’s Chinese Theatre in Los Angeles. The theater was hosting the L.A. premiere of Electric Daisy Carnival Experience, a documentary about the annual Electric Daisy Carnival, a giant rave meant to celebrate the still-thriving electronic dance music and rave community. The 2011 event held in Las Vegas over three days had about 215,000 people in attendance, so you can get an idea of just how popular the EDC is. However, the block party almost turned into an out-of-control riot after Kaskade, one of the stars in the documentary, tweeted the plans of the impromptu block party.

Lo and behold, over 2,000 people showed up and crowded the street outside the theater before Kaskade could even get there. The tweet that started the whole thing said the time, date and place of the block party, followed by: “ME+BIG SPEAKERS+MUSIC=BLOCK PARTY!!! RT!” He also tweeted “let’s see if the magic of social networking will work today.” The power of social networking definitely did work, but went above and beyond what Kaskade had expected.

He called the horde of people a “#flashcrowd,” and while he was still on his way to the event he tweeted that “the man (is) trying to shut us down.” The L.A. police arrived and tried to clear the street. Law enforcement shot beanbags at the crowd and tried to push them away, which then sparked the crowd to start throwing objects, vandalize cars, and even enact the art of planking.