Policing paedophilia: Assembling bodies, spaces and things

Elaine Campbell
  • Crime Media Culture An International Journal, July 2016, SAGE Publications
  • DOI: 10.1177/1741659015623598

Policing paedophilia

What is it about?

This article explores the emergence of digital vigilantism, and traces the work of a `paedophile hunter’ in action, noting how this style of policing is taking hold within a pluralised landscape of policing forms. The seminar discussed the implications of this development for key principles of justice, legitimacy, accountability, and policing by consent.untability

Why is it important?

This is a timely article, given the proliferation of digital vigilantism across the US, UK, Europe and OECD countries. Rather than see these developments as the outcome of formalised agreements and contractual partnerships between public policing and private policing actors, this research examines how digital vigilantism takes hold by capturing the popular cultural imagination, facilitating critical dialogue in the public sphere via the use of social media.


Professor Elaine Campbell (Author)
Newcastle University

This paper emerged from a dissatisfaction with existing accounts of `plural policing' which tend to regard `new' policing arrangements as emerging through policy initiatives and/or planned partnerships. This paper helps to make sense of policing styles which are organic, unplanned and informal. Controversially, such styles are proving to be very effective which poses questions of how we might think about core principles of accountability, fairness and policing by consent..

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The following have contributed to this page: Professor Elaine Campbell