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Subject: On the horizon - Camera Wars rss

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So the county I live in equipped 5 Sheriff officers with body cams last Friday. Their "eventual" goal is 70 officers outfitted. Truthfully, I suspect all police will eventually be camera-ready when they go on shift.

My reaction to this is fair-is-fair, citizens will probably have to respond to this potential incursion by wearing their own retaliatory cameras. As the devices get smaller and adapt to 4G (and other) streaming services footage should be instantly transmited to the Cloud, and therefore free from interdiction by police who'd rather not have footage available if it shows them in a negative light.

This ramping up reminds me of the whole Russian dash cam phenomena - where dash cams are a necessity due to the high rate of fraud and deceit and, of course, shaky insurance and liability laws. I can see why police want this and in a way it's almost a natural evolution of the dash cam. Spurred on, no doubt, by ubiquitous cell phone cams and even the coming age of wearable tech.

My question to RSP is this - do you see the police attempting, over time, to strip the public of their rights to video police in action? Bear in mind that this has already been attempted and that many police try and claim that videoing an event constitutes interfering with law enforcement trying to do their duty.

Some of you may have to check with the HiveMind before responding, or at least wait until you see how other hive members respond before adding your social confirmation and voice to the chorus.

*note*

My interactions with the police are minimal. But I do see an increasing militarization of police throughout the USA. Militarization implies being at war and police are supposed to be protecting the public. War needs enemies and police need to serve and protect. My view is that militarization is not compatible with good police because it eventually turns every policeman into a soldier and every citizen into an enemy combatant.
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J
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The police may try, but they won't be anymore successful at banning filming than they are now.
 
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There's a potential for conflict in this sure. I'm thinking though that overall you'll see it as a good thing overall, after some rocky beginnings.

I think a lot of the cam-drama we see now is a bit of:

a)editing of footage, both intentional and accidental 'I got my phone out at this point' which removes a lot of context and gives misconceptions about the cause/escalation/entirety of the conflict.

b)The mixture of on-cam off-cam time meaning people don't parse they're being evaluated all the time they are, and so aren't on their best behavior.

I'm not really keen on all these cameras everywhere. I firmly believe we're in the throws of a Huxleyan Distopia, no need to add Orwell to the picture and get both going at the same time.
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I'm sure the police would love to take away more inconvenient freedoms. That will require complicity from politicians, but that's easy to get if you paint opponents as "soft on crime."

I'd like to see every officer equipped with an always-on camera, but I want that footage to be available on an unedited stream that stores everything. After all, as nearly every officer has asked in his career, "Why do you care if you don't have anything to hide?"
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Koldfoot wrote:

Don't even get me started on the overlap of those two areas: DUI laws.



I'm all for DUI reform. First offense is a mandatory and automatic 90 day suspended license and $10,000 fine. Second offense is automatic lifetime suspension of license, $10,000 fine, and five years in prison. If another person is injured because of the offender's actions the automatic sentence moves up one level. Any DA attempting to plea bargain pays the full penalty in place of the offender.

Any violation of the license suspension automatically carries the death sentence, no appeals, to be carried out within 30 days. Same sentence applies to any DUI incident where a person is killed.

I would also make this retroactive, and volunteer to hold the clipboard while the Mel Gibsons and Jarred Allens of the world are finally punished appropriately instead of being allowed to skate by with slaps on the wrist because of their celebrity. I would also allow a special research commission to be convened to develop a means to bring people back from the dead solely to see Teddy Kennedy punished for his offenses.

I, uh, kind of hate drunk drivers.
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djgutierrez77 wrote:
Koldfoot wrote:

Don't even get me started on the overlap of those two areas: DUI laws.



I'm all for DUI reform. First offense is a mandatory and automatic 90 day suspended license and $10,000 fine. Second offense is automatic lifetime suspension of license, $10,000 fine, and five years in prison. If another person is injured because of the offender's actions the automatic sentence moves up one level. Any DA attempting to plea bargain pays the full penalty in place of the offender.

Any violation of the license suspension automatically carries the death sentence, no appeals, to be carried out within 30 days. Same sentence applies to any DUI incident where a person is killed.

I would also make this retroactive, and volunteer to hold the clipboard while the Mel Gibsons and Jarred Allens of the world are finally punished appropriately instead of being allowed to skate by with slaps on the wrist because of their celebrity. I would also allow a special research commission to be convened to develop a means to bring people back from the dead solely to see Teddy Kennedy punished for his offenses.

I, uh, kind of hate drunk drivers.


Oh, and if we need room in the prisons for all these useless human piles of shit who get in the car hammered, I think legalizing marijuana entirely and decriminalizing possession of some "party" drugs would go a long way to freeing up the necessary space.
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I am VERY disappointed with this thread, which I honestly thought was titled, GAMERA WARS at first glance.

Big letdown in here.
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galad2003 wrote:
djgutierrez77 wrote:
djgutierrez77 wrote:
Koldfoot wrote:

Don't even get me started on the overlap of those two areas: DUI laws.



I'm all for DUI reform. First offense is a mandatory and automatic 90 day suspended license and $10,000 fine. Second offense is automatic lifetime suspension of license, $10,000 fine, and five years in prison. If another person is injured because of the offender's actions the automatic sentence moves up one level. Any DA attempting to plea bargain pays the full penalty in place of the offender.

Any violation of the license suspension automatically carries the death sentence, no appeals, to be carried out within 30 days. Same sentence applies to any DUI incident where a person is killed.

I would also make this retroactive, and volunteer to hold the clipboard while the Mel Gibsons and Jarred Allens of the world are finally punished appropriately instead of being allowed to skate by with slaps on the wrist because of their celebrity. I would also allow a special research commission to be convened to develop a means to bring people back from the dead solely to see Teddy Kennedy punished for his offenses.

I, uh, kind of hate drunk drivers.


Oh, and if we need room in the prisons for all these useless human piles of shit who get in the car hammered, I think legalizing marijuana entirely and decriminalizing possession of some "party" drugs would go a long way to freeing up the necessary space.


So hat about people who drive under the infleunce of marijuana?


Same. DUI is DUI, the source of the impairment is irrelevant.
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djgutierrez77 wrote:

Same. DUI is DUI, the source of the impairment is irrelevant.


Yeah, well, DUI's aren't really relevant to the thread unless videos are used in court. And I'll disagree on the fine for 1st offenses. One of the problems now with police is how police doing something other than "policing" ends up making them a burden or outright threat to the public. Heavy fines like that, especially for 1st offenders are a revenue source waiting to be exploited.

And it sets up the one time offender for a cycle that can be impossible to escape, even if the DUI offender is zero risk for ever offending again. The insurance problems, easily running over $10K depending on age, the work-related problems if the offender isn't in a situation where public transportation is available, etc. I mean, why pile on? We're already pretty much in agreement about the "system" inflicting damage on casual drug users who aren't criminals but become criminalized (and revenue sources) because of enforcement policies that do zero to protect anyone.

So, I'm with you on the suspension for 1 offense and yes, heavier punishment for repeat offenders. But I think putting a 19 or 20 year old that deep in debt and dropping them into a system that is basically a a gravity well that is near inescapable solves almost nothing.
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DWTripp wrote:
And it sets up the one time offender for a cycle that can be impossible to escape, even if the DUI offender is zero risk for ever offending again.

What puts them at zero risk for ever offending again, and why can't it prevent their first offense?

(I agree with everything in your original post; I don't know whether there will be any success in making it illegal to record the police, but I think arguments in favor of that are transparently bogus.)

EDIT: that is, arguments in favor of making it illegal to record the police are bogus.
 
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CCTV surveillance is already expanding at a rapid rate, seems like the least we can do is let citizens have film to show their side of the story. As others have noted, given how ubiquitous and easily concealable it all is, stopping filming would seem... logistically difficult, even if it were morally justified (which I don't think it is, since if they can film you, you need the ability to film them).

That being said, I certainly think everyone filming each other all the time is not going to improve things. I imagine it will exacerbate one of my main issues with law enforcement, which is this:

Because we all break the law regularly (many laws are stupid and/or arbitrary and or unreasonable to actually follow. e.g. speed limits), almost everyone in America fulfills the technical requirements of illegal activity, and consequently enforcement is often arbitrary at best or targeted/retaliatory at worst. They can't pull over all of America for breaking the speed limit, but if a cop is pissed at you, he can pull you over for not slowing down fast enough when passing from the 50 zone to the 30 zone.

Ubiquitous cameras are only going to mean more files on everyone, so it will be much easier to target anyone they don't like and point to some random technically illegal activities and make their life unpleasant.
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DWTripp wrote:
My question to RSP is this - do you see the police attempting, over time, to strip the public of their rights to video police in action? Bear in mind that this has already been attempted and that many police try and claim that videoing an event constitutes interfering with law enforcement trying to do their duty.


Yes, and for that exact reason.

Quote:
My interactions with the police are minimal. But I do see an increasing militarization of police throughout the USA. Militarization implies being at war and police are supposed to be protecting the public. War needs enemies and police need to serve and protect. My view is that militarization is not compatible with good police because it eventually turns every policeman into a soldier and every citizen into an enemy combatant.


We're not at that stage here yet (some way off, I think, and hope), but the nascent attitude toward the public can be seen. Mind you, this isn't helped at all by a corresponding attitude from much of the public that the police are only there to "get people"; get them for exactly what I've no idea, but anyway it turns it all into a nasty feedback loop.

Police on the street take their cues from the political bodies above and around them, and those political bodies are insanely paranoid about information control. And would be only too happy to attain and maintain that control via police powers.
 
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Should the public be banned from filming police officers, no.

Should such film be admissible as evidence, no.

Should the police have cameras to film their actions, yes.

Should this film be admissible as evidence, yes (with the proviso that such film must be 100% untampered with, and that it should not be possible for the officer (or even police force) to tamper with it).
 
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DWTripp wrote:
djgutierrez77 wrote:

Same. DUI is DUI, the source of the impairment is irrelevant.


Yeah, well, DUI's aren't really relevant to the thread unless videos are used in court. And I'll disagree on the fine for 1st offenses. One of the problems now with police is how police doing something other than "policing" ends up making them a burden or outright threat to the public. Heavy fines like that, especially for 1st offenders are a revenue source waiting to be exploited.

And it sets up the one time offender for a cycle that can be impossible to escape, even if the DUI offender is zero risk for ever offending again. The insurance problems, easily running over $10K depending on age, the work-related problems if the offender isn't in a situation where public transportation is available, etc. I mean, why pile on? We're already pretty much in agreement about the "system" inflicting damage on casual drug users who aren't criminals but become criminalized (and revenue sources) because of enforcement policies that do zero to protect anyone.

So, I'm with you on the suspension for 1 offense and yes, heavier punishment for repeat offenders. But I think putting a 19 or 20 year old that deep in debt and dropping them into a system that is basically a a gravity well that is near inescapable solves almost nothing.


I say pile on because drunk drivers are worthless filth, and it's a voluntary crime with a huge potential for harm to innocent people. No one accidentally drives drunk. It's not a "mistake." If it only endangered the driver, I wouldn't care. Kill yourself, fine by me. But every single time someone gets in the car drunk they're a danger to everyone else. I have zero sympathy for that 19 year old kid, and if the automatic penalties are stiff enough that his douchebag friends are a little more insistent about taking the keys away before he hops in his car and drives home when he can hardly see then I'd say it solves quite a bit.

Edit to add: But fine, I could live with lower fines. I'm more concerned with total humiliation, getting that person off the road, and locking them up or executing them if they do it again. The money is just meant to be a deterrent.
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kuhrusty wrote:


(I agree with everything in your original post; I don't know whether there will be any success in making it illegal to record the police, but I think arguments in favor of that are transparently bogus.)

EDIT: that is, arguments in favor of making it illegal to record the police are bogus.


Same here. I doubt the cops will ever succeed in making it illegal to record their activities, but I've no doubt they'll try.
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I was trying to come up with a way to suspend DUI folks from buying alcohol in addition to driving, in lieu of the huge fines. It would suit Dave's embarrassment angle while avoiding the debt-doom Tripp was talking about. I just couldn't think of a good way to track it. You couldn't really stop the guy from drinking beer bought by someone else really, but that level of hassle, akin to needing a cab/bus/etc instead of your car would be the point.
 
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slatersteven wrote:
Should the public be banned from filming police officers, no.

Should such film be admissible as evidence, no.

Should the police have cameras to film their actions, yes.


Evidence is evidence. Cops aren't any more trustworthy than the rest of us. If you believe what you just said, I have a prison colony to sell you.
 
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Escapade wrote:
slatersteven wrote:
Should the public be banned from filming police officers, no.

Should such film be admissible as evidence, no.

Should the police have cameras to film their actions, yes.


Evidence is evidence. Cops aren't any more trustworthy than the rest of us. If you believe what you just said, I have a prison colony to sell you.
Yes, which is why I said it should only be admissible where they have no control overt it (such as stored by a third party agency, or with date time tags that cannot be altered or removed). The difference between the Police and the Public is that you cannot enforce such restrictions on the public, you can on the police.

And no I did not say they were more trustworthy then the rest of us, if I had said that (or intended to imply that) I would not have included the caveat that they cannot control this data.
 
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You're still trusting someone with the control. Someone with no direct oversight, most likely.

Let in any halfway decent evidence. Pointing out the holes in it is the reason lawyers get paid.
 
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Escapade wrote:
You're still trusting someone with the control. Someone with no direct oversight, most likely.

Let in any halfway decent evidence. Pointing out the holes in it is the reason lawyers get paid.
And that also allows for human error (or even just plain persuasive argument). Hell it allows for too much room for corruption and dishonesty. There are rules for evidence, and civilian video footage never obeys even the lax ones we have now.

Of course any system of evidence gathering can be corrupted, but we can in place systems that are designed to reduce that (by law). That is what I am saying, as long as video footage obeys certain very strict rules, it should be permitted as evidence, but if it cannot be demonstrated to fit those criteria it should not be.

No one person can (realistically) be expected to meet any resolvable criteria for such evidence admissibility. But any corporate or governmental body has to resources to be able to (they may not, but as you say that will be for layers to argue about). But there has to be strict rules as to what is and is not admissible (and we have such rules now which reject all kinds of evidacen the public may wish to submit, such as hearsay and rumour).
 
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The only way to be sure is to have as much evidence as possible. There should be cameras taping the cops and cameras taping the cameras taping the cops.
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kuhrusty wrote:
DWTripp wrote:
And it sets up the one time offender for a cycle that can be impossible to escape, even if the DUI offender is zero risk for ever offending again.


What puts them at zero risk for ever offending again, and why can't it prevent their first offense?

(I agree with everything in your original post; I don't know whether there will be any success in making it illegal to record the police, but I think arguments in favor of that are transparently bogus.)

EDIT: that is, arguments in favor of making it illegal to record the police are bogus.


Beats me. All I know is that only 1/3 of DUI offenders ever get another DUI. Since there isn't a standard $10,000 fine for first offenses as Dave wants it seems the penalties we do have correct the majority of offenders. The remainder are most likely alcoholics and I agree, they should be kept away from vehicles, maybe permanently. So I see what Koldfoot suggests - a vein of money to be mined by the police instead of a real enforcement-to-protect scenario.


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slatersteven wrote:

No one person can (realistically) be expected to meet any resolvable criteria for such evidence admissibility. But any corporate or governmental body has to resources to be able to (they may not, but as you say that will be for layers to argue about). But there has to be strict rules as to what is and is not admissible (and we have such rules now which reject all kinds of evidacen the public may wish to submit, such as hearsay and rumour).


So you advocate in favor of a system where there are two kinds of parties: corporations and government bodies who can create admissible evidence, and natural persons. I wonder who the evidence will tend to favor.
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DWTripp wrote:

Beats me. All I know is that only 1/3 of DUI offenders ever get another DUI.


But what is the percentage of DUI offenders ever drive while intoxicated, again?

I mean, really, I am not sure I've ever driven after having a few drinks that isn't considered "Officially" a DUI.

Just because I drive well after a couple drinks, or I have just been extremely lucky that I've never been down the crosshairs of a police officer looking for DUI's, I really doubt DUI offenders don't offend again in almost any form.
 
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Escapade wrote:
slatersteven wrote:

No one person can (realistically) be expected to meet any resolvable criteria for such evidence admissibility. But any corporate or governmental body has to resources to be able to (they may not, but as you say that will be for layers to argue about). But there has to be strict rules as to what is and is not admissible (and we have such rules now which reject all kinds of evidacen the public may wish to submit, such as hearsay and rumour).


So you advocate in favor of a system where there are two kinds of parties: corporations and government bodies who can create admissible evidence, and natural persons. I wonder who the evidence will tend to favor.
Not create, use, and I would have no issue with ordinary people being able to submit evidence of the same quality (I just do not believe they could). Evidence has to be of a higher calibre then "something I edited at home". Indeed we do already have this in our justice system, we have many restrictions on what is and is not admissible.

As I said, if it is beyond tampering it should be admissible, if it is not beyond tampering it should not. To take a leaf out of your debating book, why do you want evidacen to be admissible that can be tampered with?
 
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