Facebook Party Invite Goes Viral, Sparks Dutch Melee

Thousands descend on Haren, along with riot police
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 22, 2012 7:38 AM CDT
A screen grab from a YouTube video from Haren.   (YouTube)

(Newser) – Oh, the importance of privacy settings. A Dutch girl sent out an invite via Facebook to her 16th birthday party, which ended up getting viewed by about 30,000 people. Last night, a crowd estimated at 3,000 showed up in the small town of Haren, and the ensuing vandalism, looting, and clashes with riot police left six people hurt and 20 arrested, reports the BBC and Reuters. Many sported "Project X" T-shirts, a reference to the movie about a party that gets out of hand, reports NBCNews.com.

The birthday girl "posted the invitation on Facebook and sent it to friends, who then sent it to other friends and soon it spread like wildfire across the Internet," a local police official says. Facebook, though, might be able to help undo the damage: A new "Project Clean-X Haren" page sprang up after the unrest and already has more than 23,000 likes. (Read more Facebook stories.)

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