The leftist American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has actually put something out in the marketplace that is exceptionally done and is taking on police and protecting citizens. “Police Tape” is a new app that is currently available for Android users and an iPhone version in in the works.
So what does this little app actually do? The ACLU’s Alexander Shalom says, “There’s really only three buttons that the user needs to deal with. There’s a know your rights button that educates the citizen about their rights when encountering police on the street, in a car, in their home or when they’re going to be placed under arrest, and there’s a button to record audio and a button to record video.”
It allows users to record both audio and video discretely so that no one is aware that they are being recorded. While in some states this would be illegal for private use, when dealing with police officers in public, the Supreme Court has said it is part of the First Amendment rights of individuals.
The app also makes deleting pictures, audio and video from your phone more difficult for police. “Unlike a recording that’s just done in the standard camera or video mode on someone’s telephone, it’s a little more complicated to find these files and delete them,” Shalom said. “So it can theoretically be done but it would take a far more tech-savvy police officer to do it.”
The ACLU actually took an idea I’ve had for some time and made it a reality. The app not only makes the recording more difficult to find by police, but also offers the option to have it uploaded and backed up to ACLU-NJ for analysis of civil liberties violations.
I applaud the effort and hope that other individuals and liberty loving groups will put out their own versions of the app. After all, though it’s a great app, the fact that the ACLU put it out leaves a bad taste in your mouth.
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