Now You Too Can Be A Surveillance Camera!

from the digg-for-law-enforcement. dept

We've had plenty of stories in the past about the concept of "sousveillance" and David Brin's idea of the transparent society where everyone watches everyone else, and it seems like the world keeps moving in that direction. The latest is in New York City, where Mayor Bloomberg is apparently working on a plan where anyone can take camera phone photos or videos of suspicious activity and immediately send them off to the police. Of course, that only works if the police aren't flooded with bogus reports. Maybe this doesn't go far enough. The next step should be for them to make all the images and video publicly available somewhere, so that crowds of web surfers can vote on which images and videos are actually crimes, and which aren't worth bothering with. Think of it as a Digg for law enforcement.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    identicon
    awwtbone, Jan 18th, 2007 @ 10:53pm

    my 1.3 mp camera-phone hard at work...

     

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    Jeff, Jan 18th, 2007 @ 11:21pm

    FUCK YES!!!

    As soon as this program is up and running, I will promptly send them pictures of my balls and asshole with a phone that was quickly yanked out of a backpack at school.

     

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      PIB, Jan 18th, 2007 @ 11:46pm

      Re: FUCK YES!!!

      I can imagine the police lineup resulting from that one...

       

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        Jeff, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 11:30am

        Re: Re: FUCK YES!!!

        Suspect 1 looks and awful lot like Suspect 2, but he's a little smaller. Suspect 3 is one of those "hairy-scary" guys, just sweeping his hair apart to see his one eye for the mugshot is like trying to find Santa Claus' mouth. Also, no matter how much we hose him down, he remains stinky.

         

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    Riley, Jan 18th, 2007 @ 11:27pm

    Junior High Society

    A public where everyone is capable of snitching on one another? Cool...I've always wanted to be a cop. Or even more so, a vigilante. But where is the line legally drawn? If I'm out to 'get someone', say an ex-wife or a prominent sports figure I don't like, can I just stalk her until I catch her jaywalking on my Motorola Krzr? And when you take a picture of a crime, are you responsible for testifying in court? Because I know a lot of people who are very gifted in the art of 'Photoshop', and a few more that are quite capable of sending anonymous messages. I sincerely hate being a naysayer, but I really can't wait for the problems to start surfacing with this model. There have to be some implications when you give the public a convenient way to rat each other out.

     

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    bleeorg, Jan 18th, 2007 @ 11:56pm

    oh yeah!

    I just want to eat my own poo on camera and be shamed on the internet.

     

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    Bryan John Boswell, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 1:26am

    Why not...

    There's nothing new under the sun. This went on in elementary school - just drop a note on teacher's desk. I think we should all be on the NYPD payroll for services rendered.

     

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    bt garner, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 2:55am

    but more importantly, would the Website where you upload the photos be called Pigg.com ?

     

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    security, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 2:58am

    Laymen Defining Suspicious Activity has mixed resu

    Suspicious activity can sometimes require training, and hopefully, those who do this will do this with discretion.

    Imagine an altercation developing because someone objected to having a video or picture taken.

    Also, would the police arrest people who would video or photograph THEM?

    Or perhaps lawsuits developing over false allegations.

     

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    LEE, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 3:54am

    Police surveillance not meant to be surveillance o

    That program will last until people start sending in photos of Poilice misbehavior.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 4:05am

    Civillian Crime Down, Police Crime Up

    I can see the CNN headline now...
    Bloombergs new cell photo program is a hit, Civillian crime down 35% !!!
    In Other news Police Crime is up 43%

     

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    The infamous Joe, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 4:40am

    About the Digg part.

    What is to stop an organized group of people from 'digging down' their crimes?

     

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    Evil_Bastard, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 5:21am

    I think would be a short lived yet hilarious endeavor. I can;t wait for the photoshoppery to begin! I think I'll do one of Schumer holding up a liquor store, then Bloomberg doing lines off a hookers ass....

     

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    comboman, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 5:27am

    Crowd-sourcing is so old-school

    Welcome to Vigilante-sourcing.
    (I'm trademarking that term by the way)

     

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    TrickyNy, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 5:41am

    Mark my words...

    If criminals really take heed of this system, we will see the rise of homebrew cell phone jamming tech.

     

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      LJSeinfeld, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 5:53am

      Re: Mark my words...

      Umm yeah.. I don't think there would be anything like 30 second time-limit as to when you can send the photo to law enforcement.

      I'm wondering if there would be a "trouble ticket" you would get so you can follow up on your "complaint"...

       

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      haywood, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 7:00am

      Re: Mark my words...

      "If criminals really take heed of this system, we will see the rise of homebrew cell phone jamming tech."

      Then some good could come from it!

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 6:16am

    Aren't people in larger cities already caught on video like 200 times a day: bank cameras, store cameras, stop light crossings, hospitals, Wal-mart, ad-nauseum?

    Wasn't that the way that caught that hospital employee that stabbed that woman a few weeks ago? traced his whole escape route.

    So, how much more Orwellian can we get? In the book "1984", weren't you considered double-plus-good to rat on those doing "ungood"?

     

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    NinjaBoy, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 6:18am

    Digg

    W00T Digg!!

     

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    Phil Canyon, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 7:24am

    That's it, I'm shooting anyone with a camera phone, just in case......

     

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    Dam, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 7:28am

    Anyone Still Not Convinced......

    That Bloomberg is a total effin' idiot?

     

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    G. M., Jan 19th, 2007 @ 8:17am

    ...

    Didnt the East Germans do this during the cold war?

     

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    Pixcavator, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 8:20am

    AI

    Seriously, this seems like a good testing ground for image analysis systems and other AI.

     

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    DKP, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 9:00am

    too many problems

    I would rather see a system like they have in britan where people are trained to pick out problems and use video cameras mounted on streeets.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 9:06am

    CNN reported on this today and while at first hand it did sound like anyone can just send in pics and vids, its not that straight forward. CNN elaborated on how this will work.

    You call 911 and report the problem and tell them you have vids/pics. They determine if this is BS or you are for real or if they even need the pics/vids and if they want you to send them in they send you a text message. You respond to that text message and include your pics/vids.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 10:19am

    CrimeTube!

     

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    Kyle, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 12:28pm

    So if someone sees a crime and is trying to report it to 911, an image won't help? Is that the thing? I think it can be quite handy. "What sort of car is it?" "uh... blue? Here, let me send a picture." Given that prank callers to 911 already are prosecuted, why would this be any different? Randomly sending in photos is only going to get the "reporter" into trouble, and this ability is really not that different from the existing system of calling in to report suspicious activity. Or is 911 as we know it today part of the Vast Conspiracy to Control Us All?

     

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      Jeff, Jan 19th, 2007 @ 6:01pm

      Re:

      Or is 911 as we know it today part of the Vast Conspiracy to Control Us All?


      When I'm on hold waiting and bleeding to death because the rest of the lines are tied up with stupid bitches who call 911 for injured birds, lost wallets or loud music on a Saturday...then yes...sort of...but not really...I say let's fix the system we have before we "improve" it by letting the nerds that work for the gov't go nuts with a bunch of money so they can build a big, huge, expensive-ass system that may or may not (leaning towards not) work.

       

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