There's No Possible Way This Would Be Misused

$100,000 for police to spy on bus stops. Anyone willing to bet they can turn those things on ANY time they want to sneak a peek at who's going where and when? Are the bus stops really THAT dangerous? Yesterday: major traffic intersections; today: bus stops; tomorrow:?

Views: 1

Comment by Nora on March 23, 2008 at 1:56pm
I'd feel safer riding the bus with those buttons there, personally. I don't exactly feel unsafe at bus stops or on the bus but I don't feel totally secure there either-- having a sort of "panic button" would make me feel a bit better. I'm not sure if it would add any real security, but security measures really rarely do.

I'm of the "when you're in public, people can see you" camp, though.
Comment by Doc Mara on March 23, 2008 at 2:02pm
I'm constantly amazed that people equate "being seen" with "camera surveillance that then gets piped to secret places."

I'm totally cool with people being seen. It's just when the watchers don't want to be seen themselves. There's a reason the guard towers are so far up...
Comment by Jdogg on March 23, 2008 at 2:36pm
I think it's a great idea. I take the bus quite a bit up and down central and I think that there are some not so great situations that can and do occur to women and children. I'm all for privacy but I'm also for safety, particularly for women and children.
Comment by Tricross on March 24, 2008 at 9:47am
You got to a bank... better yet, you go to an ATM. There is a camera there watching you. How do you knwo where that feed goes to? Bus stop no different.
Comment by Dr Dan on March 24, 2008 at 9:55am
I suppose the only difference I can think of and I admit it is way out in left field, is that an ATM and Bank are privately owned business, and the bus stop would be a public entity
Comment by Doc Mara on March 24, 2008 at 10:08am
Bus stop IS different. Bus stop is public space. I actually don't much like bank or ATMs doing the same, but I have no choice. Public government is different, and they actually work for us. I have little problem with panic buttons, as people get the choice there.

But when it comes to recording what we are doing, I think there should be at LEAST as much transparency with the watchers as with the public. The stories about pulling and resistance to any oversight to wiretapping should give us MASSIVE misgivings about more and more surveillance. Am I the only one who finds it surreal that people prefer Big Brother to the alternatives?

At least THIS guy seems to have his head on straight.
Comment by bleve on March 24, 2008 at 10:11am
Well, one's a private operation... which I don't think anyone has a problem with a business having their own surveillance cameras. The other is a public operation with a private company monitoring people in that public setting. Very different.

A bus stop is very different from a bank and has very different implications altogether. The main question is with oversight and how effectively can the government have oversight of a private, contracted body as far as efficiency with tax-payer money, although Ben mentioned there may be money coming from somewhere else, and also with the future use of that visual information.

Surveillance technology is changing rapidly as well as a push for more surveillance in all facets of our lives. It is our duty to make sure legal safeguards for personal rights and freedoms keep up with these changes.

In Tampa and England cameras were initially installed solely for security purposes as well as for traffic ticketing. They are currently being used for facial recognition against a criminal database, with a very dismal record of catching anybody... the point being that the issue here is not necessarily just the reason for the cameras but the implications for future use.

With the amount of mix-up in identities, people being held without charges and the suspension of Habeus Corpus in this "war on terror" I think it is expedient to not only be skeptical but to demand overwhelming proof that this is justified as well as enact safeguards for future use if they are indeed justified.

I'm glad there was some prior discussion about it as Ben stated and I'm sorry that I missed my opportunity for input at that planning stage.


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