Thursday, August 2, 2012

Twitter as a tool for police transparency and community building

Screenshot of the tweet in question
CTV is doing a story on this right now, but I'd like to give a different take on what I see here.

Here you are seeing direct interaction with his community by an upstanding police officer. I know I am often critical of the police on this blog, but the police I am being critical of are the global enforcers witnessed in countries around the world. Mixed with private security, militarized, in a veil of secrecy to deal with civil unrest and political dissidents.

This picture represents so much to me. It shows a successful outcome, the preferred outcome that is. CTV mentions concern that he was tweeting on the job, I trust that his judgement was sound in the safety of using his phone at this time.

What's more important though is that we are living in time of increasing distrust and severe lack of transparency when it comes to government offices. Instead of this tweet of uncensored, real, and honest police work we could have police trying to buy videos taken of them like in Anaheim recently.

More police officers need to follow Constable Power's example and help bridge the gap that's grown between community and policing.

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Richard Fantin is a self-taught software developer who has mostly throughout his career focused on financial applications and high frequency trading. He currently works for CenturyLink

Nazayh Zanidean is a Project Coordinator for a mid-sized construction contractor in Calgary, Alberta. He enjoys writing as a hobby on topics that include foreign policy, international human rights, security and systemic media bias.

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