New Technology – more hindrance than help?
This isn’t my image – just one that I feel reflects the public view of technology, and of the police.
Many people – especially in middle management in the police- are frightened of this brave new world of engagement. There is comfort in the processes we all understand, and have a degree of control over. Increasingly however our world does not work like that.
People are talking about policing, having conversations and discussing your services, without inviting you. Journalists are finding stories and presenting them in the traditional media this way, and more importantly many people are finding their news via Twitter, sharing it via Facebook, uploading their videos and pictures of your services.
“Effective engagement is at the heart of policing. the revolution in digital technology means that people are engaging with services at their own convenience and in the manner, medium and at a time which suits them.” Nick Keane – in the Engage Guide to police forces using social media.
“the revolution in digital technology means that people are engaging with services at their own convenience and in the manner, medium and at a time which suits them.”
The speed of technology for the public vastly exceeds the speed with which traditional police force communications can respond. Modern smart phones can take a high definition video, edit it and upload it to the internet…before your officers have even returned to the station at the end of their shift. Have a look at this video of a TfL employee abusing a passenger for an example of what that can look like – this employee lost his job before the day was out.
There are loads of videos on YouTube videos on policing – some good, some mis-understood, some bad. Some are even posted by forces themselves. The following is just a quick edit of a few videos out there:
By posting videos, commenting on other people’s videos, or refusing to comment, what message are we sending? How can we use the huge numbers of people watching videos online to engage more widely, and explain the context of issues such as taser deployment etc?