A happy slapper’s mobile phone recording of an attack took an unexpected twist when his victim retaliated, flooring his assailant with a single punch. In footage that is rapidly gaining cult status, an athletic young man in a white vest is seen plotting the attack on a stranger, filmed on his friend’s mobile phone. The British man, on what appears to be a foreign street beside the entrance to a shopping arcade, addresses the camera and, as if he were preparing to sing on the ITV1 show Stars in Their Eyes, says: “Tonight Matthew, I’m going to be. . .a happy slapper.” The cameraman, also British, can be heard encouraging his friend, saying: “OK, the next person who comes out.” [...] A passer-by emerges from the shopping arcade: a smaller man, wearing a leather jacket, a bag slung over his shoulder. The happy slapper runs towards him, drawing back one arm to swing and catch the man full in the face. The victim recoils in pain and drops the bag. He sees his attacker turn and walk back to his friend, who is laughing and still recording the scene. Incredulous, he screams with rage. He asks his attacker what he was doing. Judging by his accent, he appears to be from Liverpool. The victim then approaches the youth and throws a fierce right-hand jab, punching him on the chin and knocking him unconscious.
He is perhaps the first recorded victim to turn the tables on his would-be attackers since the slapping craze began. It is thought to have begun in South London but has since spread across Britain and Europe. Incidents have ranged from minor assaults to the killing of Soho barman David Morley in a gang attack on the South Bank in London in October 2004, all recorded and circulated on mobile phones. Coverage of the phenomenon in the press has been mirrored by constant chatter in internet chatrooms and on online message boards. Some attackers post messages boasting of their slaps, some request new footage to be sent via e-mail. Others condemn the craze.
And the happy slap that back-fired:
A search for Happy Slapping on YouTube pulls in around 250 results today ... I wonder if the ease of clip culture will contribute to more acts of digitially recorded stupidity? [Via Smart Mobs]
[Tags: meme | happyslapping | smartmob | cameraphone | mobilephone | london]