Posted: Wed, April 23 2014 at 3:03 PM, Updated: Wed, April 23 2014 at 3:25 PM
(NBC News) An NYPD social media campaign backfired when the police department asked New Yorkers for photos with cops and Twitter erupted with unflattering pictures of officers making arrests, tangling with citizens and in some cases wielding their weapons.
Police Commissioner Bill Bratton on Wednesday disputed the idea that the effort was a failure, saying he welcomed the images, and that sometimes police work isn't pretty.
"Send us your photos, good or bad," he said. "I welcome the extra attention."
The department on Tuesday asked followers on its official Twitter account, @NYPDNews, to post photos of themselves with officers:
"Do you have a photo with a member of the NYPD? Tweet us & tag it #myNYPD."
The #myNYPD hashtag quickly took off when people began tweeting photos that the NYPD would probably rather not highlight. The hashtag became a trending topic, drawing responses from around the world.
Many of the photos showed the NYPD wrestling with demonstrators and pointing or swinging weapons at civilians.
The tweets accompanying the photos were often negative and sarcastic.
More tweets: http://bit.ly/1f7Ki0v