Memo to Salt Lake City Police Department: Lifeblogging was never cool. Neither, come to think of it, are the glasses you see above. But the chief of police of Salt Lake City is hoping to make the above accessory mandatory for his on-duty officers, as well as for every other officer in the state. Much like dashboard cameras currently log what's happening in front of a police officers car during a shift, this tiny glasses-mounted camera will record everything an officer sees--and does--while on patrol.
Which is actually a pretty cool idea, mandatory Oakley shooting glasses even when you're not shooting. The technology Salt Lake City is considering is made by Taser (yes, that Taser, they make other things as well). I caught a briefing on the technology some months back from TaserCEO Rick Smith. And I was kind of impressed.
While there's an argument to be made that all these cameras everywhere are turning us into a police state--especially when the police are the ones getting more cameras. And it's true: these kinds of cameras will increase the likelihood of you being filmed (by the state!) when perhaps you are not aware of it. However, with so many smartphones and laptops and tablets around these days, there are cameras everywhere anyhow. The nice thing about Taser's AXON Flex (that's the proper name of the product) is that when properly used it really serves the people as much as the officer.
With AXON, every interaction is going to be recorded, not just the ones that happen in front of the police cruiser. But the officer wearing the camera doesn't have control over the data it collects. At the end of each shift officers are required to turn in their cameras, which are plugged into a special terminal that offloads the data to a remote server. Individual officers don't have access to said server--to recall that video paperwork has to be filed and essentially a formal inquiry has to be made through the legal system.
All that is to say yeah, you're on camera. But so is the officer. And that might just encourage both parties to be nicer to each other.
This is a fantastic first step for accountability for those with the most power and authority.
YAY! maybe the power hungry sadists who become cops just to boss other people around will be kept in check and end their brutality and unnecessary violence. It could ALSO put a huge road block up for police who use entrapment and illegal searches to enforce their power over the average citizen.
Cool! More fun videos to come on YouTube.
We're all be listened too and watch by NSA. This is just an additional tool in the government leashing the people. While this camera is bulky and obvious on the glasses, there are those ‘other’ cameras that can hidden and stalking us every day, which the government does not tell you about or publically admit too.
Traditionally, the government used to have to get a judges approve prior to stalking you. But since the new laws on the books after 9/11, now the government can stalk anyone, anytime. Many people have in mind the old NSA department and the old laws. They should really become aware of the NSA built in Utah and online fully in 2013 and the new laws of search people.
" www.wired.com/threatlevel/2012/03/ff_nsadatacenter/ "
Oh, and for many years, our government agencies have the ability to listen to your home phone if its on the hook and your cell phone even if it appears powered off. Everyone just assumes if a phone is on the hook is off. This is not true; the receiver\microphone is still powered and active. And just because the lights are off on a cell phone, the rest of the electronics can still be powered on remotely. The CIA\FBI and other government agencies have been making good use of this for years.
Yes, this has some positive points too, but I do not like the fact it comes from one point of view. If they had multiple cameras from different angle and all using microphones, I would consider that a better way to record the situation.
And as we head towards financial economic doom, the American people just assume our government is our friend,…………………. LOL.
Everyone should wear one of these when driving--in that way you record all those nasty accidents when someone turns left in front of you violating your rights and then the insurance companies will quit BS'ng everyone trying to weasle out of things.
The next step is to require all politicians to wear these and release the video to the public. Granted some videos will have to be censored to protect other people or for national security but even classified videos should be released to the public after x number of years, (maybe 2 presidential terms?) in order to create a more transparent government by the people and for the people.
Look, as far as I'm concerned, if they can see you legally with their eyes, there shouldn't be a problem with them seeing you with a camera, with some caveats. First, I'd expect the footage to be publicly available upon request in a secure manner, so that it can be seen but not copied (and thus risk distribution later). Second, we should just as easily be able to legally film police officers with our own cameras if they are in public performing their public duties.
This kind of technology, if used correctly and given adequate protections, has the potential to protect both the officers and the public. But of course, the devil is in the details.
Pretty much anything I want, I can copy off line the internet, dvd or blue ray, be it encrypted or not, lol, and I'm a novice. I know others, who are real experts, as well as tweaking\modifying the same video.
So be careful what you wish for, sir. ;)
Oh, while I do back up my own media, I do not encourage others to copy and distribute copy righted media. And that's my story and I'm stick'n to it, lol. ;)
(1) These will make arrests more documented - meaning that prosecutions will be more efficient judicially and for the taxpayer when criminals are arrested.
(2) These will make officers safer from accusations of abuse (as well as hampering the few who are abusers) of power.
(3) This will reduce the officier time spent filling out leangthy reports, since the footage will be on file, meaning more time on the streets for LE (this is a good thing for law abiding citizens).
(4) When things do go wrong (abuse, officer shooting, etc), then this gives departments a tool to deconstruct those incidents and give better training to their officers.
(5) This will increase accountability for the actions of officiers during their duty hours (less time wasted texting girlfriends, playing solataire on their computers, or sitting around eating pizza).
All in all, I have so few run-ins with the police that I can't imagine where anyone other than a criminal or a lazy cop would care if these were their or not. Since they already have you on dashboard, this is hardly a civil rights issue.
If the police do not have a warrent, however, I would ask them to take the glasses off before I invited them into my house for a cup of coffee. No reason to give a DA a reason to WANT to look through your domicile.
This is a great idea to not only keep citizens in check but to also keep officers honest.
Seems like a good idea, but with some caveats. The first concern is who can access the footage and under what conditions. The second one is that clearly cops should not have special privileges denied to citizen, and therefore citizen should be able to record cops. Otherwise cops will selectively keep and disclose footage, while cop abuse will remain shielded.
As a side note, the fact that security guards and other private protection services are not using such cameras suggests this is not such a great feature. Because public police has a legal monopoly (it is not subject to competition for certain services) it is harder to tell what are good and worthwhile features. This one included.