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Traffic Cameras in D.C.

michael posted more than 12 years ago | from the say-cheese dept.

Privacy 516

Kappelmeister writes "The Washington Post has an article about red-light-running and speeding cameras all over D.C. that have issued over half a million citations to date. (Police send you a ticket and photographic proof up to a month after the fact.) Though the cameras successfully reduce dangerous driving and boost the city's revenue, a lot of wrongful citations fall through the cracks and give some that guilty-until-proven-innocent feeling. Once again, how far is too far?" I came across this much more informative investigation of D.C.'s traffic cameras a few weeks ago. It's heavy on facts and figures, and hammers home the observation that an extra second of yellow light is at least as good at promoting good behavior, but much less lucrative for the local government and the contracting firm.

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One of the local news stations in DC covered this (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465452)

They went down to the intersection with had the most red-light running. As they were interviewing a couple people who said that the camera was faulty, and that there really was a flaw with the camera system, they caught 3 people run the red light.

It was just amusing that an independent camera placed there for a few minutes during rush hour caught the same people.

First post? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465453)

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Sunday morning (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465454)

Holy crap, it's a first (heh).

Extra Yellow... (4, Insightful)

Golantig (231102) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465455)

...surely, once drivers become used to the 'new' length of yellow they will jump the lights as frequently as they do now. Will they keep increasing the length indefinately?

Green doesn't mean go, it means "go, if the way is clear"...

Re:Extra Yellow... (2)

tenman (247215) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465588)

They could have a rand function that changes the length of the yellow light with every cycle. It wouldn't discourage the yellow jumper, because legally you have to have n number of seconds of yellow. So every driver knows that he has two seconds to slam past the light. even if really he has eight.

I'm just glad I live in Texas where the state has declaired it illigal to post cameras for this purpose. In a state that spends more on corrective services than any other, I'm sure that our "boys in blue" will no have to contend with electronic replacements to soon.

Re:Extra Yellow... (2)

dboyles (65512) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465617)

Indeed. Several years ago I recall a light that would hold yellow for a good 4 or 5 seconds. Many a time I would be driving next to (or close) to another car, the light would turn yellow and he would stop. Knowing that they light held yellow for so long, I'd continue through and make it through easily. A much better solution is to have a standard length for yellow, and then adjust the delay for the other direction's green.

Speaking of better solutions, what about a police car actually pulling over red light runners? They don't have to catch everybody, but every driver who sees someone get pulled over will take notice. The fact that some states/cities choose to use cameras to ticket simply proves that they are more interested in ticket revenue than in the public's safety.

Just me or... (0, Troll)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465456)

1984 is right around the corner?

[hehehe just kidding, I figured I might as well post the first bad reference to 1984...]

Down with privacy up with publicness... Oh wait WHO GIVES A SHIFT!

Tom

Re:Just me or... (1)

rmohr02 (208447) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465494)

Just me or...1984 is right around the corner?
Big Brother is watching us.

Re:Just me or... (-1)

TrollBridge (550878) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465537)

Ya know, enough with the fucking 1984 posts. That came and went 18 years ago, and you wankers are still shitting your pants over it.

Just shut the fuck up and do what you're told!

Speeding is protected speech (-1)

anonymous cowfart (576665) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465459)

Those fucking wankers! I invoke the first amendment! And the second. Let's go shoot them!

Re:Speeding is protected speech (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465473)

Those fucking wankers!

Wanking is also protected speech. HTH.

Re:Speeding is protected speech (-1)

anonymous cowfart (576665) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465546)

And it is also protected by the second amendment.

Speeding kills (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465496)

Bullshit.

I fucking hate speeders. Once such a bastard blasted past me on a highway going at least twice the speed I was going (60 mph). I called the police on my cellphone and, what you know, the guy got stopped a few miles after that. Served him right.

Why is it so hard for people to understand that speeding kills and, no matter how they would like to believe otherwise, they're only average or below the average drivers?

Re:Speeding kills (2)

aridhol (112307) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465513)


Why is it so hard for people to understand that speeding kills and, no matter how they would like to believe otherwise, they're only average or below the average drivers?


Actually, that's only true for half of them.

Re:Speeding kills (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465525)

Actually, that's only true for half of them.

Not really. It is my experience that above average drivers rarely have the urge to speed since they know that no matter good a driver you are, the speed still kills. They're also smart enough to realize that gaining a few pitiful minutes in travel time doesn't warrant the risks involved in speeding.

Re:Speeding kills (1)

JZ_Tonka (570336) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465553)

"It is my experience that above average drivers rarely have the urge to speed since they know that no matter good a driver you are, the speed still kills."

Is it also your experience that above average writers know that pencils still cause misspelled words?

Re:Speeding kills (1)

mattreilly (33603) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465589)

Wow, you really destroyed him with your argument, junior.

Re:Speeding kills (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465584)

Not really. It is my experience that above average drivers rarely have the urge to speed since they know that no matter good a driver you are, the speed still kills. They're also smart enough to realize that gaining a few pitiful minutes in travel time doesn't warrant the risks involved in speeding.


Speed doesn't kill. It's the sudden deceleration in a crash that kills. So if everyone was going fast...

Also, "a few pitiful minutes" can be pretty damn important. Or should the Police, Ambulance and Fire Trucks not exceed the limit, too??

Re:Speeding kills (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465596)

Also, "a few pitiful minutes" can be pretty damn important. Or should the Police, Ambulance and Fire Trucks not exceed the limit, too??

Are you seriously suggesting that if the emergency services can exceed the limit then Joe Sixpack should have the right too?

Re:Speeding kills (-1)

MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM (537317) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465624)

Actually, Joe Sixpack should have the right to exceed the speed limit. When he need his beer, he need it NOW!

Re:Speeding kills (1)

mattreilly (33603) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465532)

Actually it's a well-documented statistical anomoly. A majority of drivers are below average drivers.

Re:Speeding kills (-1)

flaw1 (572429) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465551)

ANALomoly.

Re:Speeding kills (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465579)

You do know that the median and average are different if your distribution is not symmetrical?

heh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465462)

these things are all over Arizona (state which leads the nation in 'red light fatalities') and while its great that it cuts down on some of those folks that dont drive well, it also means that if I enter an intersection while it is green, but grandpa is doing 4 mph, I can still get ticketed.

That actually happened twice withen three days, and now I get to not only pay the ticket, but also take _2_ mandatory 8 hour classes.

FUN!

Re:heh (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465469)

Repeat after me: Entering an intersection while it is full is bad, mkay ?

Eh? (1)

rde (17364) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465463)

I don't know about the US, but here in Ireland a yellow light means 'stop unless it's dangerous to do so'. If that's the case across the pond, then I don't see how an extra second can make a difference.

Of course, 90% of Irish drivers think a yellow light (or 'amber' in the vernacular) means 'speed up' and every colour light means 'feel free to park in the cycle lane'.

Re:Eh? (1)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465484)

'stop unless it's dangerous to do so'

Similar here in VA, and I'd bet nationwide. Our actual verbiage is something more like "make every reasonable attempt to stop."

Contest these (3, Interesting)

Wells2k (107114) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465470)

I think that every time I were to receive a ticket for this from one of these cameras, I would contest it in court. There is no proof that you were driving the car at the time, so why should you receive points against your record for the crime, not to mention the cost of the ticket and the rise in your insurance costs?

Re:Contest these (2)

aridhol (112307) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465483)

In British Columbia, before they abolished photo-radar, it was simple. No points were put on your record for a photo radar ticket. Only a live police officer could give you demerits. Then when you get the ticket, you can look at the picture to determine who was driving (you? your 17-year-old kid?), and have that person pay the fine. The fine gets paid, no points on the record.

Re:Contest these (1)

rmohr02 (208447) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465502)

First of all, you don't get points assessed to your license, and if someone else was driving your car, you probably can get money from them for the ticket. That is, if they still want to be able to know you. If you weren't friends, then what were they doing in your car?

Re:Contest these (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465577)

I was watching a mini-documentary on these things, and, at least in Canada, if it's your car, you're legally responsible for anything done by your car. Therefore, if your car is involved in a crime, such as running a red light, you get the fine. But, you don't get any demerits because they can't prove it was you.

I don't know (3, Funny)

jandrese (485) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465472)

There's something vaguely satisfying about thinking that those 5 people who just tailgated you through that yellow got ticketed.

Traffic Cameras (4, Funny)

Holistic Universaliz (526100) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465477)

In Norway its a sport to Run the Traffic Cameras run, with hidden numbers an cut out Photos of local polices or politisions.. Go GO GO

Re:Traffic Cameras (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465619)

I heard Normen got small dicks, so they constantly need to find stupid things to do in order to prove themselves.

Can anyone but a moronic 16 year old find that running a red light is 'heroic' or 'fight for your freedom'?

If you drive fast enough.... (1)

ejaw5 (570071) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465479)

and the camera only takes "still-shots" (not video), wouldn't the picture show just a long blur of your car stretching from the beginning of the intersection to out of the camera's range?

Re:If you drive fast enough.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465492)

Speeding cameras are not based on motion blur, they use radar.

Re:If you drive fast enough.... (1)

aridhol (112307) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465505)

And how does this radar improve the accuracy of the picture?

Re:If you drive fast enough.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465568)

Based on motion blur? Radar? What?!?

Re:If you drive fast enough.... (1)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465495)

Depends on how fast they have the shutter set. Probably pretty fast I'd bet. If it's auto-shutter, then you have more of a chance to be a blur when there is low light.

Now I have to waste two minutes of my life, because I can type quickly....lalalalalalalalala OK, lets try again.

Re:If you drive fast enough.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465510)

sure,
if you drive over 400km/h

Re:Traffic Cameras in D.C. (1)

rmohr02 (208447) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465480)

I saw a newspaper article about this a coupla weeks ago. It takes a picture of the driver when the car starts to go through a red light, and a picture of the license plate when the car is through the light. I know that in my state, Ohio, cops aren't even allowed to pull people over in unmarked cars. This is stupid--for any other crime (yes, I know this is a relatively minor crime) they could. In D.C. (and the surrounding area), half the cars parked along the side of the highway with their hoods up are cops, waiting to radio ahead with your license number.

I liked this complaint though:
Owen Johnson of Mountain Lakes, N.J., contends that the red-light cameras are too impersonal and nab drivers in situations where an officer might not. He received a ticket in February because his car, driven by his son, Chris, 22, of Chestertown, Md., was photographed running the light at New York and New Jersey avenues -- less than a second after the light turned red.
If you trust someone to drive your car, you can probably trust them to pay you for the ticket. Also, no points are assessed to your license because of a camera-captured ticket, so in the end you'd have no reason to complain.

such cameras deemed unlawful in another state (3, Informative)

Reziac (43301) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465485)

I can't remember which state it was (might even have been here in California) but in the past year or so, one state's courts found use of such cameras to catch redlight runners unlawful, because using the evidence to issue a fine presumed guilt without proper legal procedures. Maybe someone else can recall or unearth the details.

Not to mention that they were found to be considerably less than accurate.

Re:such cameras deemed unlawful in another state (2)

rknop (240417) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465535)

I can't remember which state it was (might even have been here in California) but in the past year or so, one state's courts found use of such cameras to catch redlight runners unlawful, because using the evidence to issue a fine presumed guilt without proper legal procedures. Maybe someone else can recall or unearth the details.

Back in something like 1993, in Pasadena CA, I got a photo-radar speeding ticket. (Note: similar deal, but not specifically WRT running a red light.) I went to look at the picture, and it was clearly me; you could read the licence plate on the car, and the picture of me was better than the one on my drivers licence. I was speeding and knew it, so quietly paid up. Later, I found out that anybody who contested one of those tickets in court would have it removed without question; I guess the legality was on shaky enough ground that they didn't bother defending them. The depended on the sheep like me to make their money....

I read in the newspaper a year or two after I got my ticket that Pasadena had stopped doing it. I don't know if it was declared illegal or not, but I did sort of kick myself for having just blithely paid the ticket. Oh well, it's water well under the bridge by now.

I would say that during my six years in Pasadena (1990-1996), I noticed as a pedestrian that the running of red lights got noticably worse during those six years. By 1996, it seemed that the rule was "if you saw it yellow, you get to go through it." Driving or walking, once my light turned green I would always wait a few seconds to make sure that somebody else wasn't going to blow through the red light the other way. It wasn't that bad in 1990, but by 1996 it had gotten pretty common and pretty ridiculous.

-Rob

I got one of these tickets (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465487)

For running a red light in North Carolina.

I live in Texas. I've never BEEN to North Carolina. Accuracy? What's that?

Re:I got one of these tickets (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465509)

You don't get the evidence photo with the ticket?

Here in Europe you get the photo and if it is not you driving the car the ticket will be null and void.

Re:I got one of these tickets (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465548)

Yes, you get a photo. I don't even see how they got a Texas plate out of it, nor how a Honda Accord looks like a Camaro.

The kicker is, to say "it's not me", you have to send in $50. They'll send it back (supposedly) when it's dismissed, but why should I pay for something I didn't do, and obviously didn't do? Why should the NC make money (from holding mine for an unknown period) on THEIR mistake?

Not only D.C. but Maryland too.. (5, Informative)

antis0c (133550) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465488)

I live about 15 minutes from D.C. north in Maryland and we have the same traffic cameras. Same up all over baltimore city. My father works as a Fleet Manager for a contracting company that rents out trucks to do city work for Baltimore city. They get about 10 of those traffic citations a day.

My father tells me there are only 2 ways to win a case in court contesting the citation. One, you have convince the judge that the license plate on the vechicle in the picture isn't yours, or isn't clear enough to establish 100% that it is indeed your license plate.

Or two, you have to prove the yellow light you were photographed at wasn't 4 seconds. State law mandates that the yellow lights must be at least 4 seconds long, so if the yellow light was say 3, the light was malfunctioning and you weren't at fault. This of course means you have to go out there with a video camera and get the light being yellow for less than 4 seconds.

Down near DC they don't seem to use flash photography, I think they use actual video cameras, all the cameras around my place are the security camera style ones. Up in Baltimore City they're flash style, and you can tell when you've gotten caught because they produce a large flash. They also look a little like bird houses on a poll next to the intersection.

Thats about all I know personally about these, I don't care for them that much, but ever since they put them in, I carefully pick and chose which yellow lights I'm going to try and go through.

North Carolina too... (5, Interesting)

vanguard (102038) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465541)

They have this in my area (RTP, NC) too. It's fairly well known that unless you're actually innocent, you can't get out of it.

You need to prove that you weren't driving, it wasn't actually your car, etc.

One nice thing about the system is that if you're caught with the cameras, it's not treated like a moving violation. You don't get any points on your record and your insurance isn't impacted.

The system doesn't bother me. It only catches guilty people, it's less fallible than the police, and it provides more money to the local gov. (I like our local gov). And most importantly, it makes the street safer. Let's not forget that running red lights kills people. Punishing the guys that do that is a good thing.

Vanguard

Another serious problem with this (1, Troll)

Kamel Jockey (409856) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465499)

Apparently, a lot of police cars and other emergency vehicles have been ticketed while they were speeding to answer 911 calls. Although human oversight is supposed to screen out these citations, a lot of cops, firefighters and EMTs found themselves receiving tickets in the line of duty, and the city's appeal process was so complex they couldn't go through the effort to fight them off. The end result is that many of these cops, firefighters and EMTs have been driving the speed limit (usually 25mph) to their calls. It is disgusting that these cameras are now directly endangering peoples' lives.

I used to live near DC, I travel there often still. Given how quite a bit of the city is still a craphole, I can't imagine this money going to any positive use. The DC city council even wanted to assess points to speeders' driving records. However, congressman Dick Armey personally interceded and put a stop to this (because of his privacy concerns). He also wanted to begin congressional hearings into the constitutionality of traffic light cameras in general.

money making schemes for governments... (1)

thanjee (263266) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465500)

Melbourne in Australia caught onto this lucrative traffic violation market years ago. There have been a number of investigations in Melbourne (sorry I don't know any URLs to any of them, I saw them all on TV) which described how speed cameras were installed around the city to raise revenue and get the state back in the black. Well it is in the black again, and revenue is always increasing, in fact they lowered the speed limit across the state by 10Km/h, which helped more people get speeding fines. Radio reports on major commercial stations always give reports of where speed cameras have been detected to help drivers avoid fines. The one thing that really reduces speeding though is just to have a police vehicle in the area. Speed cameras don't deter speeding, they just cath people off gaurd. A police presence on the other hands reminds people to check their speedos, and they slow down.

Re:money making schemes for governments... (1)

sisukapalli1 (471175) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465571)

To put this in context... Recently, there was a report about the New Jersey Government's projections about how to finance the EZPass scheme (this is the automatic toll deduction via a transponder in your car thingie).

The infrastructure costs were to be about 500M, and the folks raised 300M through public bonds, and projected that the remaining 200M will be collected from Toll violators. Mind you, not from tolls, but from toll violation fines. 40% of the infrastructure costs. Agreed, New Jersey might be a rougue state, but not this much!

In reality, the collections were only 13M in the first year, and it cost the state 15M for the administrative costs -- for taking care of the fines. Poetic justice.

S

Driving is not a right (3, Insightful)

mattreilly (33603) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465501)

Yes we live in a free country and you are allowed to exercise your freedom until it starts to impinge on the freedoms of others. Now, I would say your freedom to run a red light unless you get caught by a physical police officer impinges on my right to walk across the street without being killed.

This is not a freedom or privacy issue, it's a public safety issue. If your worried about getting tickets because someone else ran a red light in your car, be more careful about who you lend your car out to. Or maybe we should go for a more technical solution and do away with car registrations and me your license a transponder you put on your windshield so if a violation is committed in your car the correct person will be charged.

belgium (1)

softwave (145750) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465504)

Over here in Belgium, we have had unmanned speeding camera's for a couple of years now. They look like some fancy birdhouses and are positioned on stratagic locations (as in: 5 meters before red lights)

I don't know how this has had an impact on speeding. Fact is, those camera's aren't always turned on. They mostly act as a preventive measure.

My personal experience with those camera's is that after a while, you know where they are situated. Most of the time they're on express roads (mostly 70-90kph, +/- 40-55mph). All I do is slow down when approaching one, pass it at "legal" speed and then speed up.

I don't really see the privacy issues on this one ...

Just my 0.02 :)

Netherlands (4, Funny)

uebernewby (149493) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465554)

We have them over here as well. Our national pasttime seems to be to wreck them, so they're now starting to put up cameras to watch the speeding cameras.

Traffic Cameras in DC, Loophole? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465507)

In the US legal system one has the right to confront the witness against them and question them. If I get a traffic ticket from a police officer, take it to court an supeona the cop and the cop does not show up, I will get the case dismissed every time.

In the case of a traffic ticket from a camera, can't you simply contest it in court and since there are no witnesses against you, no one that you can supeona and question, get it dismissed?

does a fucking machine count as a witness these days?

if so, i suppose i better watch out to make sure my computer isn't watching me.

________
Being shot out of a cannon will always be better than being squeezed out of a tube - Dr. Hunter S. Thompson

This isn't new in Edmonton (1)

Firecaster (169752) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465508)

We've had red light cameras and photo radar in Edmonton, Alberta for several years. I find that it doesn't help the speeding issue at all, since everyone who likes going over the limit has either a radar detector or listens to the traffic reports on the radio (they always announce where the speed traps are). If the media stopped announcing where the traps were, maybe it'd be more effective. I've also noticed that the police uses it more at the end of the month, when they haven't reached their ticket quota. I think that they should be using it more consistently.

As for the red light cameras, one huge problem I can think of is the issue of getting stuck in an intersection as the light's changing. Sometimes it happens, and because the ticket is issued by a machine and not an officer, it's pretty hard to appeal the ticket. They also don't seem to place them at the right intersections; all the intersections with a camera are marked, and I've just seem people speed through different intersections.

There apparently several ways around the cameras, such as placing this sheet of plastic covering (sorry, don't know what it's made from) over the plate so that when the camera flashes, the plastic reflects the flash back to the camera and makes the photo useless. I'm not sure how well this works, but I've seen a good percentage (about 30-35%) of the vehicles here that have them. I'm not quite sure what the Edmonton Police Service is doing about them, but I'm pretty sure they're not legal.

Conclusion: this would be so much more effective at stopping red-light burners and speeders if this was implemented more effectively (stop the media from divulging the locations of the cameras, don't mark the intersections, put the cameras in more intersections, make it illegal to get around the cameras)

Anyways, these are the two (Canadian) cents from a person who's lived in a town with this kind of technlogy for several years. My advice for D.C. and any other place that wants to implement this kind of technology: learn from Edmonton's mistakes.

~ Firecaster ~

Re:This isn't new in Edmonton (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465522)

> issue of getting stuck in an intersection as the light's changing

Since the article is about DC, that's not a problem. Any motorist stuck in an intersection is presumed to be at fault and ticketed. It actually happens pretty frequently.

Photo Radar (1)

Ainu (135288) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465512)

About ten years ago Ontario tried photo radar. It was so massively unpopular it was a major reason the provincial government was defeated at election time. It was immediately repealed by the sucessor government.

Even worse in korea.. (1)

Tyrant Chang (69320) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465514)

In korea, cops pay freelancers to take photos of traffic violations. There are dudes hiding at an intersection where traffic violations commonly occur (illegal u-turns and whatnot) and snap photos. Apparently it is pretty lucrative job since some people have made it a full time job. Cops send a nice ticket to traffic violators and split the fine with the dudes who photographed the violation.


However, hidden cameras are not too hidden in korea, cops must put a sign some saying there is a camera nearby (about 50 ft in front of the camera) by some law or something.

Re:Even worse in korea.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465562)

In korea, cops pay freelancers to take photos of traffic violations. There are dudes hiding at an intersection where traffic violations commonly occur (illegal u-turns and whatnot) and snap photos. Apparently it is pretty lucrative job since some people have made it a full time job. Cops send a nice ticket to traffic violators and split the fine with the dudes who photographed the violation.

Imagine the money you could make with a copy of Photoshop....

Or the revenge you could get on a 'friend'....

Taking the joke too far (5, Funny)

eap (91469) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465515)

I heard a story about someone who got one of those pictures of himself running a light in the mail. Instead of sending in payment, he mailed them a photograph of some money.

They responded by mailing him back a picture of some handcuffs.

Don't complain (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465516)

You're in a public area, there's no difference between a cop looking at you through a camera or just standing there. You know the rules of the road, you're just bitching that you got caught.

Re:Don't complain (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465539)

most cops still know right from wrong, machines just say, too fast or not, there could be a very good reason to go faster than allowed where a cop would escort you and a machine would fine you

Re:Don't complain (1)

wheany (460585) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465623)

I can see how this is a problem, seeing as the traffic camera automaticly tries to stop you, and failing that, it will send an army of killer robots to hunt you if you don't pay the fine.

It's a completely autonomous system. No human interaction needed.

Re:Don't complain (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465567)

there's no difference between a cop looking at you through a camera or just standing there

There is a difference between a cop looking and a totally automated camera, tho.

Hmmm. (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465524)

Here, in Perth (Western Australia, that is) these gadgets have been in common use for years.

They have made no difference to the road-kill stats whatsoever, but they have become a significant cash cow for the state government.

Photoshop (1, Troll)

Junior J. Junior III (192702) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465526)

If I was sent photographic evidence of me speeding or running a red light, I'd just respond by showing them incontrovertible photographic evidence of Bert's [spacecat.com] close ties to Hitler, Osama Bin Laden, alien abductions, etc., etc.

I'd follow it up by showing my car on the moon with Neil Armstrong, driving on the rings of Saturn, and nude pictures of the President's wife.

We'll see if their photographic evidence still hold sup in court.

Why this technology will never become ubiquitous (2, Interesting)

defile (1059) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465529)

"Casual" red light running is harmless. This is exactly what these cameras catch. The people who miss the yellow by a second, or people who have been waiting in the turn lane forever and it turns red 2 seconds before they get to go, and they say fuckit.

It does not catch the flagrant retards who barrel through a red light without a care in the world.

If these cameras prevented deaths and made streets safer, why aren't they on every single intersection? Because if they were, everyone would know about them and no one would commit "casual" offenses, thusly destroying a huge revenue stream for the city. Cities would rather people thought they could get away with it so they could catch and ticket a small percentage of them.

The street lights here that have cameras? Everyone who knows about them stops at them. There's only one here on a road I frequent. I creep up to it at 15mph and SLAM on the brakes if the light turns yellow. Even the cops don't run these lights. But everyone resumes their normal course once they pass it.

What's particularly sneaky about this light is that it is near the border to another county, where the street lights have a much longer yellow duration. Pure evil.

Re:Why this technology will never become ubiquitou (2, Interesting)

mattreilly (33603) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465556)

I'm not understanding how they don't catch the people who barrel through the lights without a care in the world.

And as for casual red light running being harmless. Here in New York City I've stepped into the crosswalk countless times and almost been run down by the idiot who just missed the yellow by one second.

What people don't seem to get is that when you are driving you are piloting a potentially deadly piece of machinery and it should be taken seriously. Of course this is going to laughed off Slashdot with it's predominently male memebers. So many guys seem to think that driving like an asshole makes your dick bigger.

Mass hysteria ensues! (4, Interesting)

EvlPenguin (168738) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465530)

I live in the pile of rubbish known as Staten Island, NY, where the ticket-issuing traffic lights have become a fact of life. The first ones went up about four years ago, and since then there have probably been millions of tickets issued. Drive by a few known ticketing stops at night and you will see one of two things: 1) a cavalcade of brake lights as the light turns yellow, or 2) the bright flash of the camera as some unwitting moron speeds through the red light.

Now, I believe there are about 20 in place (all on busy intersections), of which I can name 16. They're also pretty obvious to see (not every corner has a giant grey camera box attached to the traffic pole). Are you really in such a rush that you can't stop when the light turns red?

While I will admit that this system may be annoying for those who like to try and burn red lights, for the rest of us, it's not a big deal. Orwellian? Certainly not. I'd be more concerned about face recognition and national ID cards than moving violations.

What would 007 do? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465531)

This guy knows the answer. He used a cars power antenae on his CBR to make his license plate disapear at the flip of a switch.

http://bikepics.com/pictures/02491/
http://bike pics.com/pictures/02487/

Reduce yellow (1)

Hoo00 (123566) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465533)

If they reduce the length of yellow, 1. revenue will increase 2. people will get used to it and may stop at seeing yellow, instead of speeding up. Not sure about the accident rate though.

UK had these cameras for years (1)

PineGreen (446635) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465536)

UK had these cameras for years now. Funnily enough, they mostly don't have any film inside and just scare you by flashing at you.

I've been told that, if you can prove, that it has been positioned where it would bring the country a lot of money, but wouldn't save lives, you can get rid of it

There are many ways around it. You can simply wrap your number plates in shiny plastic, so the flash would bounce off them, or you can buy more sophisticad devices that flash back at the camera.

Devices to fool the camera. Maybe not a good idea. (2)

SomethingOrOther (521702) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465631)


There are many ways around it. You can simply wrap your number plates in shiny plastic, so the flash would bounce off them, or you can buy more sophisticad devices that flash back at the camera.

Be very careful doing this!
A standard speeding / red light ticket is only £40 ( ~US$60) and three points.
Getting nicked for "Conspiricy to pervert the cause of justice" is not funny. You will get screwed. (Ask a few of the regulars on uk.rec.motorcycles!)

Speeking of which, the forward facing cammeras are becoming very popular now. Great for us bikers as there is no numberplate on the front of the bike. Most of us now consider it our duty to go past these flat out with a didget raised at the cammera :-)

innocent until proven guilty... (1)

Kunta Kinte (323399) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465540)

a lot of wrongful citations fall through the cracks and give some that guilty-until-proven-innocent feeling.

Ever been to traffic court? It's always been that way. Unless you can somehow prove that the officer was wrong, misguided, you are guilty.

Last time I went to traffic court I checked it out. The only people that went free were the defendants who's accusing officer did not show up ( like me :) Even cases where both the officer and the accused did not show up, the accused was found guilty

I believe it is that way if the case isn't a criminal case or something. not a lawyer.

PS. Want to increase the odds of your accusing officer not showing up? Then (a) ask for the trial at the last possible time, we have 2 weeks to do so, (b) Schedule the case as late has they'll let you, (c) When the date comes up,ask for continuance, ie. reschedule. Here we have 1 continuance (d) reschedule as late as you can again. The point is to put as much time between the time of the infraction and the court date. There's no guarantee, but it works

Mod-point wasting post! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465542)

A few years ago, while browsing around the library downtown, I had to take a piss. As I entered the john a big beautiful all-American football hero type, about twenty-five, came out of one of the booths. I stood at the urinal looking at him out of the corner of my eye as he washed his hands. He didn't once look at me. He was "straight" and married -- and in any case I was sure I wouldn't have a chance with him.

As soon as he left I darted into the booth he'd vacated, hoping there might be a lingering smell of shit and even a seat still warm from his sturdy young ass. I found not only the smell but the shit itself. He'd forgotten to flush. And what a treasure he had left behind. Three or four beautiful specimens floated in the bowl. It apparently had been a fairly dry, constipated shit, for all were fat, stiff, and ruggedly textured. The real prize was a great feast of turd -- a nine inch gastrointestinal triumph as thick as a man's wrist.

I knelt before the bowl, inhaling the rich brown fragrance and wondered if I should obey the impulse building up inside me. I'd always been a heavy rimmer and had lapped up more than one little clump of shit, but that had been just an inevitable part of eating ass and not an end in itself. Of course I'd had jerkoff fantasies of devouring great loads of it (what rimmer hasn't), but I had never done it. Now, here I was, confronted with the most beautiful five-pound turd I'd ever feasted my eyes on, a sausage fit to star in any fantasy and one I knew to have been hatched from the asshole of the world's handsomest young stud.

Why not? I plucked it from the bowl, holding it with both hands to keep it from breaking. I lifted it to my nose. It smelled like rich, ripe limburger (horrid, but thrilling), yet had the consistency of cheddar. What is cheese anyway but milk turning to shit without the benefit of a digestive tract?

I gave it a lick and found that it tasted better then it smelled. I've found since then that shit nearly almost does.

I hesitated no longer. I shoved the fucking thing as far into my mouth as I could get it and sucked on it like a big brown cock, beating my meat like a madman. I wanted to completely engulf it and bit off a large chunk, flooding my mouth with the intense, bittersweet flavor. To my delight I found that while the water in the bowl had chilled the outside of the turd, it was still warm inside. As I chewed I discovered that it was filled with hard little bits of something I soon identified as peanuts. He hadn't chewed them carefully and they'd passed through his body virtually unchanged. I ate it greedily, sending lump after peanutty lump sliding scratchily down my throat. My only regret was the donor of this feast wasn't there to wash it down with his piss.

I soon reached a terrific climax. I caught my cum in the cupped palm of my hand and drank it down. Believe me, there is no more delightful combination of flavors than the hot sweetness of cum with the rich bitterness of shit.

Afterwards I was sorry that I hadn't made it last longer. But then I realized that I still had a lot of fun in store for me. There was still a clutch of virile turds left in the bowl. I tenderly fished them out, rolled them into my handkerchief, and stashed them in my briefcase. In the week to come I found all kinds of ways to eat the shit without bolting it right down. Once eaten it's gone forever unless you want to filch it third hand out of your own asshole. Not an unreasonable recourse in moments of desperation or simple boredom.

I stored the turds in the refrigerator when I was not using them but within a week they were all gone. The last one I held in my mouth without chewing, letting it slowly dissolve. I had liquid shit trickling down my throat for nearly four hours. I must have had six orgasms in the process.

I often think of that lovely young guy dropping solid gold out of his sweet, pink asshole every day, never knowing what joy it could, and at least once did, bring to a grateful shiteater.

This thing that both polices AND people hate... (1)

tcc (140386) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465543)

Normally there is a grey zone on which you can "play", since 2 or 3 years, here in Montreal and the areas, there are at least twice as much polices on the roads that there used to be. They've found out that it was a great source of revenues especially when the gov. wants to find ways to cut out budgets. Ok, I am all for fining the guilty people and all, but this gets annoying when you get a speeding ticket at 120 in a 100 zone (Km/h, 1 mile = 1.6 Km) I mean, 20 years ago that limit was okay, the cars weren't as safe and all, but today, in 2002, driving at 100 is painfully slow especially when you have 2000 miles to travel. Before you wouldn't get a ticket at that speed, unless the cop really had a quota to fill, but you'd get one at 130-140 obviously.

There was that grey zone where the cops could use their judgment, today everything must be black or white, you have to be a role model citizen or else you're a terrorist, you have to buy everything that you watch or look at all the advertizing or else you are stealing, you have to buy a computer with windows and office shipped on it else you are the reason why the economy will crash, etc, etc, if then else, bla bla. This is getting very out of hand, and people shouldn't tolerate cameras like that. Some polices strongly disagree with this because it also replaces the agents that would be doing that watch, so less effectives, less power, etc etc.

I mean, it's okay to put such a system to MONITOR (aka RESEARCH PURPOSE) people's habbit and see how many % are speeding up and comming out with a way to slow down the traffic, it's okay to put such a system on places that abuses are being made and notify the people that there is such of a system in place, it's okay to put it where a lot of accidents are happening, but EVERYWHERE? heck, this is very unsecuring. They want 0 or 1 from us, but when THEY have to give US what they OWE us (tax return, interests, misjudgment and all) we have to WAIT or FIGHT our way to justice and it's clearly not 0s and 1s. Having a gray zone in both ways balances the for and against of this system.

While I am not for those breaking the law and I can hear the people already replying "well roll at the speed that the law permits and you won't have a problem" I'll say; let these cameras there, and there's nothing that will stop them to use them or install new ones to monitor people all over the place, there is no way that this will sort out bad guys from good guys in a 100% fashion, and I am not for "50 is the limit, you were rolling at 51 because you sneezed and pressed the accelerator a bit more, here's your 70$ fine", this is blattant abuse. Of course those of you who never got abusive tickets are probably thinking like I used to think before, but the day you'll get crossed in a technology error or bug, you'll change idea pretty quickly I can be sure.

Re:This thing that both polices AND people hate... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465561)

That's a load of crap. If you fucktards do not like redlights, don't run one.

As far as speed limits, yeah, cops do exercise judgments. On California freeways, people regularly drive at 70-75mph where limits are 65mph with no problems.

Feedback for traffic control (1)

rocjoe71 (545053) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465544)

In Dublin, Ireland some of the crosswalks had countdown-style clocks. Although jaywalking was pretty bad all over the city, wherever these clocks appeared everybody waited for the right time to cross... I think it helped people realize that they weren't stopping for quite as long is it felt because they could see the 20-30 seconds tick away before their eyes.

Maybe people would be less likely to run the red lights if they knew how long they were waiting...

Part of the problem with traffic lights... (2)

SwedishChef (69313) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465549)

is that they are no longer set to keep traffic moving but, in fact, set to keep traffic stopped. This is a theory that a stopped car can't get into an accident (seriously!). Drivers know this, at least subconsciously, and are more apt to run yellow/red lights because they will surely be stopped at the next one anyway.

It's my own belief that the best way to stop drivers from running traffic lights is to synchronize them by speed so that drivers know that if they don't stop they will get out of synch and be stopped at the next one. But if they stop they will get back in synch and can make it through the rest (albeit at a slower speed).

This is also an excellent way to enforce speed limits. Set the lights on a main thoroughfare to be all green if a driver maintains 29mph in a 35mph zone and you will find far fewer drivers going 40.

Re:Part of the problem with traffic lights... (1)

mattreilly (33603) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465572)

That is not here in New York. Traffic flow rules here. If you not in a car your safety doesn't really matter because you must not be a productive member of society.

They tried this here. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465550)

They tried this here in Ontario, Canada. But once they figured out that they were giving the wrong people tickets they cancelled the program. The same thing is likely to happen in Washington.

--Alan P. Laudicina--

I remember something like this... (1)

MasterBlaster (71519) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465555)

A few (several) years ago there was an experiment with placing cameras along rural highways in Pennsylvania to catch speeders. Within two weeks nearly all of them were destroyed, shot full of holes , or just plain gone.
The local news coverage did a great job of explaining exactly how they worked and the general areas they were located.
It didn't take long to decide that something like this won't last in an unpopulated area.
The cameras in DC may last a little longer with so many witnesses around and some city folks aren't as "passionate" about their rights as some good ol' boys from PA with a 12 pack and a hunting rifle.

Re:I remember something like this... (1)

JohnnyGTO (102952) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465597)

Bet you there some sweet optics in those boxes. heh eh heh

Give me one... (1)

Reemi (142518) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465559)

From the article


The red-light cameras appear to have saved lives in the city, where a total of 17 people were killed in red-light-running accidents in 1997 and 1998, compared with five in 2000 and 2001. It is too soon to assess the impact of speed cameras in the city, where a total of 63 people died in speed-related crashes in 2000 and 2001.



I know, those damned statistics. But can somebody give me ONE GOOD ARGUMENT AGAINST those camera's?

Other camera's in DC ... (2, Informative)

donfede (6215) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465564)

The folks at epic, electronic privacy information center [epic.org] have a link on their website to ovservingsurveillance.org [observings...llance.org] , a web site that has a map of "big brother" camera installations in DC watching people.

donfede

You oughta see that short yellow (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465565)

I was riding with a friend in DC when we came upon one of these signals. They had big signs ahead of the intersection saying something to the effect of "CAMERAS IN USE." Wouldn't you know it, the light went to yellow as we were coming up to the intersection and my friend did the some thing we all do - we gauge our speed, our distance to the white line, and decide "yea or nay" as to whether or not we want to perform "heroic" braking. Well, because I had read about these signals not that long ago, I paid special attention to the length of the yellow and, whereas I can't give you a time down to the tenths of a second, I can tell you that it was VERY short - I'd say between 1.5 and 2 seconds, compared to the usual 4 to 5. The light was red by the time we went through the intersection; I don't know how much time after the light goes red where they send tickets, but I wouldn't be surprised if my friend got one. If so, though, it will have been because in addition to setting up the cameras, they jiggered the light timing so as to make violators out of normal, adequately careful drivers.

Unfortunately, there are few if any laws covering traffic signal timing. So, if you live where these things are used, I suggest two paths that you can follow. One, see if you can get a city ordinance passed specifying a minimum yellow light time. Two, find out who's in charge of setting these systems up, find the next highest elected official, and tell them that you want this practice stopped or you will do what you can to have him/her removed from office. If you're told to pound sand (and you will be), follow through.

Time to practice some "sousveillance." First, using a video camera, capture the timing of the rigged signals and capture the timing of several normal, untampered-with signals. Extract timing data from the tape, tabulate it, and send it to your local news outlets (if possible, send it directly to reporters who have covered similar stories in the past). Make sure that the reporter goes after the elected official you spoke to.

Practice more sousveillance. Try to capture the license plate numbers of city vehicles and, if at all possible, the license plate numbers of the car or cars driven by aforementioned elected officials. Then, stake out intersections where those cars routinely pass and videotape the cars running red lights. If you really want to blow the lid off the scam, see if you can tape them running the rigged lights. If you can show that the city officials don't get tickets, well...

Re:You oughta see that short yellow (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465606)

Why bother? If you see yellow, slow down to a full stop period.

If you are right at the line, cross, you don't get ticketed for crossing that line is yellow. You don't get the ticket for being in the intersection when the light is yellow.

HowStuffWorks article (2, Informative)

*xpenguin* (306001) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465566)

There's an article on HowStuffWorks [howstuffworks.com] that shows how the Red-light traffic cameras [howstuffworks.com] work.

More profitable to die (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465574)

There was a safety study done I believe in Mesa AZ that shows it was safer to add more time to the yellow then use these red light runner cameras. Just not as profitable for the city or the company contracted to run the program.

So.. several people will have to DIE and sue successfully before Mesa does the right and safe thing and increase the yellow.

Try and get a copy of the contract I'll bet you $$$ that you can't. The company running the equipment (red light cameras and photo radar get the VAST majority of the take.

Here in AZ it has become a sport to ignore those mailed tickets, it's too damned expensive for the cities using traffic cameras to follow up every one with a hand delivered summons(?).

Guess just the sheep send in the money!

Your darn right I'm posting Anonymously the Photo Radar companies make the record industry look like Boy Scouts (appologisies toi the Boy Scouts)

Say bye to those mod-points, fags! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465576)

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88888888888888888888888888888888888888888888888 [goatse.cx]
8/88888\8888888888888\888888888888/8888\8888888
|8888888|8888888888888\8888888888|888888|888888 123456789012345678
|8888888`.8888888888888|888888888|8888888:88888
`88888888|8888888888888|88888888\|8888888|88888
8\8888888|8/8888888/88\\\888--__8\\8888888:8888
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888\888888\_-~88888888888888888888~-_\8888|8888
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00000|0000\00|__000\\_________//0(__/0000000|00
0000|0\0000\____)000`----000--'0000000000000|00
0000|00\_0000000000___\ /_0000000000_/0|0 asdasdasdasdasd
000|00000000000000/0000| |00\000000000000| alsjdhkjdhkajhakhqwe
000|0000000000000|0000/ \00\00000000000|0
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666|666666666/6/666666\__/\___/6666|6666666666| basyguivfgyaeutgqgjsz
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you WDC guys are getting off lightly (1)

hype7 (239530) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465583)

we poor residents of Canberra (capital of Australia) live in constant fear of the Orwellian Department of Urban Services, which have a fleet of people-movers equipped with radars and cameras, etc. These guys (referred to by locals as Pigs in Taragos, Taragos being the model of people mover) have managed to get hiding down to a fine art.

What drives me nuts is that hiding doesn't slow people down. They get the ticket a month later. Say the driver was under the influence of alcohol or drugs, driving at 60mph over the limit, etc... he/she would still be driving round for another month. It happened in Australia, where an 18-y-o learner driver wiped himself and some other poor couple out, and his parents got a speeding ticket a month or so later.

I think red light cameras are a great idea, and IMO should be fitted to every set of traffic lights possible/feasible. But speed cameras don't have the desired effect. The don't stop dangerous driving (well, not for at least a month) but locals who know the area well just slow down for the speed cameras and then speed back up again.

Put cops out with radar guns, or just leave the poor motorists alone.

-- james

MPWP! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465593)

(Reposted from an eariler story -- worth reading.)

It is now official - a Slashdot poll has confirmed: Slashdot is dying

Yet anothercrippling bombshell hit the beleaguered Slashdot community when recently a poll on the site confirmed that up-to-date and factually-correct stories account for less than 40 percent of all submitted news stories, that the user-moderation system has fallen to pieces through the oppressive power of the editors, and that subscribers don't need to pay and can use such software as JunkBuster to filter out adverts. Coming on the heels of the latest MSNBC survey which plainly states that Slashdot has lost more readers, this news serves to reinforce what we've known all along. Slashdot is collapsing in complete disarray, as further exemplified by failing dead last [kuro5hin.com] in the recent Kuro5hin technology site popularity test.

You don't need to be a Kreskin [amdest.com] to predict Slashdot's future. The hand writing is on the wall: Slashdot faces a bleak future. In fact there won't be any future at all for it because Slashdot is dying. Things are looking very bad for the site. As many of us are already aware, Slashdot continues to lose readers. Red ink flows like a river of blood. The subscribers scheme is the most endangered of them all, having lost 62% of its paying readers.

Let's keep to the facts and look at the numbers.

Slashdot editor Rob Malda (CmdrTaco) states that there are 700 paying subscribers to Slashdot. How many normal readers are there? Let's see. The number of subscriber versus reader posts on Slashdot is roughly in ratio of 1 to 4. Therefore there are about 700*4 = 2800 normal casual readers. Anonymous Coward posts are about half of the volume of the typical posts. Therefore there are about 1400 readers who can't be bothered setting up an account. A recent article put the Trolls, who post sexual insults, foul ASCII art pictures and links to vile sites, at about 80 percent of the Slashdot readership. Therefore there are (700+8400+4200)*4 = 19600 trolling readers. This is consistent with the number of Troll posts.

Due to the troubles of Andover.net, abysmal hit counts and so on, Slashdot went out of business and was taken over by OSDN who run another troubled site. Now OSDN is also dead, its corpse turned over to yet another charnel house.

All major surveys show that Slashdot has steadily declined in readership. It is very sick and its long term survival prospects are very dim. If Slashdot is to survive at all it will be among geeky hobbyist dabblers. Slashdot continues to decay. Nothing short of a miracle could save it at this point in time. For all practical purposes, Slashdot is dead.

So why now? Why did Slashdot fail? Once you get over the myriad of incompatible personalities, particularly among the editors who have repeatedly failed to check for serious inaccuracies in their stories (see the FreeBSD 4.5 "release" as a shocking example), it's clear that subscribers will continue to decrease. Using software such as JunkBuster, readers can eliminate adverts without having to pay any money. These two significant factors, along with the corrupted "moderation" scheme (where editors have infinite power over the regular moderators), only confirm yet further that Slashdot's glory days are coming to an end.

Fact: Slashdot is dying

More mod-point wasting... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465600)

88888888888888888888888888888888888888888888888
8/88888\8888888888888\888888888888/8888\8888888
|8888888|8888888888888\8888888888|888888|888888
|8888888`.8888888888888|888888888|8888888:88888
`88888888|8888888888888|88888888\|8888888|88888
8\8888888|8/8888888/88\\\888--__8\\8888888:8888
88\888888\/888_--~~8888888888~--__|8\88888|8888
888\888888\_-~88888888888888888888~-_\8888|8888
0000\_00000\00000000_.--------.______\|000|0000
000000\00000\______//0_0___0_0(_(__>00\000|000 0
0000000\000.00C0___)00______0(_(____>00|00/000 0
0000000/\0|000C0____)/ \0(_____>00|_/00000
000000/0/\|000C_____) |00(___>000/00\0000
00000|000(000_C_____)\______/00//0_/0/00000\000
00000|0000\00|__000\\_________//0(__/0000000|00
0000|0\0000\____)000`----000--'0000000000000|00
0000|00\_0000000000___\ /_0000000000_/0|0
000|00000000000000/0000| |00\000000000000|
000|0000000000000|0000/ \00\00000000000|0
666|6666666666/6/6666| |66\66666666666|0
666|666666666/6/666666\__/\___/6666|6666666666|
66|66666666666/66666666| |6666666|666666666|
66|6666666666|666666666| |6666666|666666666|

88888888888888888888888888888888888888888888888
8/88888\8888888888888\888888888888/8888\8888888
|8888888|8888888888888\8888888888|888888|888888
|8888888`.8888888888888|888888888|8888888:88888
`88888888|8888888888888|88888888\|8888888|88888
8\8888888|8/8888888/88\\\888--__8\\8888888:8888
88\888888\/888_--~~8888888888~--__|8\88888|8888
888\888888\_-~88888888888888888888~-_\8888|8888
0000\_00000\00000000_.--------.______\|000|0000
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88888888888888888888888888888888888888888888888 [goatse.cx]
8/88888\8888888888888\888888888888/8888\8888888
|8888888|8888888888888\8888888888|888888|888888 123456789012345678
|8888888`.8888888888888|888888888|8888888:88888
`88888888|8888888888888|88888888\|8888888|88888
8\8888888|8/8888888/88\\\888--__8\\8888888:8888
88\888888\/888_--~~8888888888~--__|8\88888|8888 123456789012
888\888888\_-~88888888888888888888~-_\8888|8888
0000\_00000\00000000_.--------.______\|000|0000
000000\00000\______//0_0___0_0(_(__>00\000|000 0
a0000000\000.00C0___)00______0(_(____>00|00/000 0
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0000|0\0000\____)000`----000--'0000000000000|00
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000|00000000000000/0000| |00\000000000000| alsjdhkjdhkajhakhqwe
000|0000000000000|0000/ \00\00000000000|0
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666|666666666/6/666666\__/\___/6666|6666666666| basyguivfgyaeutgqgjsz
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66|6666666666|666666666| |6666666|666666666| jwqhrowuerir

We had those up here in Canada once (1)

billcopc (196330) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465605)

Up here in the National Capital Region (aka Ottawa/Hull), we had those cameras on traffic lights for a few months two years ago. Turns out they caused too much trouble because of the lack of a human witness. At first some poor fools just cleched their fist and paid up, but more and more people started fighting the photo tickets.

I remember a big issue was when the car was being driven by someone other than the owner, thus rendering the photo evidence useless and groundless. They'd send the ticket to the car owner's address, when in a normal situation the fault would reside on whomever was driving at the time.

Anyways, it only made things worse. After the 6 or 8 month trial, more and more people were just flooring through red lights, since they had gotten used to fighting the tickets without resistance. Today, if you just barely wing it as it changes to red, you're almost guaranteed to have 2-3 idiots right up your ass just begging for a nice juicy fender-bender. Traffic laws are effectively making things worse these days, especially with the police's awful reputation.

Less mod points = fun! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465608)

  • Tip #1: Play Safe

    There are some serious safety issues regarding anal sex that you need to be aware of at all times. First and foremost, whatever touches the anus shouldn't be touching anything else. Never never never take the penis out of the anus and put it into the vagina. That can lead to serious infections and other complications. After any kind of anal play, you should immediately change condoms and wash the relevant body parts thoroughly.

    Of course, STDs are also a major concern with anal sex. This isn't just limited to AIDS; herpes, genital warts, syphilis, gonorrhea, etc. can all be transmitted through anal sex. You simply shouldn't be having anal sex without a condom; it's not worth the risk to either partner.

    Tip #2: Lube, lube, lube

    One of the most important thing to remember when thinking about anal sex is that, unlike the vagina, the anus isn't self-lubricating: you gotta bring your own grease. And, the more lube you use, the better. It will make the initial penetration much more easy and less painful for the woman and make the whole experience, for both of you, much more pleasant.

    All kinds of lube are used for anal sex, from spit to Vaseline to high-tech silicone-based lubes. We'd strongly recommend spending a little money to get a high quality water-based lubricant; remember, an oil-based lubricant like Vaseline will degrade the latex in a condom, destroying its usefulness. We'd recommend products like AstroGlide or KY Jelly, available in any drug store. Note, though a condom may be "lubricated", they typically don't offer as much lube as we'd recommend for anal sex.

    There are some specialty lubes designed for anal sex that include an anesthetic to numb the woman's sensation and make anal sex less painful. We'd advise against these products. The simple fact is, pain is a way of your body telling you that something's wrong. If you're in pain during anal sex, you need to focus on solving the root problems, not anesthetizing yourself so it's easier to endure.

    Tip #3: Start Small

    Simply put, a penis is an awful big to be the first thing you stick up someone's butt. Better to start with something smaller and work your way up. Fingers are an excellent beginning point. Use one finger, then two, to initiate your partner into the mysteries of anal penetration. Try it while performing oral sex for an extra thrill. Be sure not to forget the lube, and you might also want to wear latex gloves.

    As your partner gets used to your fingers, you might graduate to a butt plug or a small dildo. Dildos are available in all shapes and sizes. Go shopping together to get one she thinks she can handle. Remember, though, don't put the dildo into the vagina after putting it into the anus. The safest way is to put a condom on the dildo before using it, and to wash it thoroughly immediately after.

Stop whining (2)

Kefaa (76147) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465612)

My favorite: "My main objection is that tickets are continuing to be issued before I have an opportunity to adjust my speed based on the first ticket," said Miriam Balutis of Arlington, who was cited for four camera-captured violations in one week -- but did not receive any tickets for a month. This "strongly suggests that deterrence is not the goal of this program."

Is it a monetary incentive for the cities? Probably, but so what? If you are caught speeding or running a red light, you did the crime, stop whining about it. As for the "Balutis Judicial System", using this logic, I should be able to rob banks until I am convicted on the first one. Further, you cannot hold any of the robberies between the first and when I was arrested against me. I did not have time to "adjust my behavior based on the arrest."

Then we have the "police were not there" group. Following their logic we should prevent the introduction of video taped evidence of the robbery because the police were not there to actually witness the event. Where do they find people with such a poor grasp of logic and how do they always manage to get press?

Technology is going to be misused, but this is not such a case. The people who are getting caught are guilty, even by their own admission.

If they wish to make the argument, it was not them, or the machine was incorrect, etc. that would be fine. But "it's not fair?" Give me a break.

Like everything else in America... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465616)

These lights are just trying to help the American public drive correctly - cause 99% of the time they are too stupid to do it themselves.

I drive a motorcycle and am in contant terror that some idiot tailgating me in a SUV, talking on their cell and eating a McBiscuit is gonna just plow over me trying to get through the yellow light.

WHAT THE FUCK IS THE RUSH ASSHOLE!!!

Now I gotta go watch Falling Down [imdb.com] again...

Learn to drive? (1)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 12 years ago | (#3465618)

Its funny how you'all seem to find the laws/technology when all you really need todo is drive safely. e.g. don't go through a yellow because you can, only if you need to [e.g. you're doing 80km/h and are say 100m away when it changes].

I mean if they have a photo of you parked at a yellow at the stop light they can't exactly win a case of that if they mistakenly give you a ticket.

Tom

MPWP!!!!!!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3465622)

    • (Reposted from an eariler story -- worth reading.)

      It is now official - a Slashdot poll has confirmed: Slashdot is dying

      Yet anothercrippling bombshell hit the beleaguered Slashdot community when recently a poll on the site confirmed that up-to-date and factually-correct stories account for less than 40 percent of all submitted news stories, that the user-moderation system has fallen to pieces through the oppressive power of the editors, and that subscribers don't need to pay and can use such software as JunkBuster to filter out adverts. Coming on the heels of the latest MSNBC survey which plainly states that Slashdot has lost more readers, this news serves to reinforce what we've known all along. Slashdot is collapsing in complete disarray, as further exemplified by failing dead last [kuro5hin.com] in the recent Kuro5hin technology site popularity test.

      You don't need to be a Kreskin [amdest.com] to predict Slashdot's future. The hand writing is on the wall: Slashdot faces a bleak future. In fact there won't be any future at all for it because Slashdot is dying. Things are looking very bad for the site. As many of us are already aware, Slashdot continues to lose readers. Red ink flows like a river of blood. The subscribers scheme is the most endangered of them all, having lost 62% of its paying readers.

      Let's keep to the facts and look at the numbers.

      Slashdot editor and homosexual-rights campaigner Rob Malda (CmdrTaco) states that there are 700 paying subscribers to Slashdot. How many normal readers are there? Let's see. The number of subscriber versus reader posts on Slashdot is roughly in ratio of 1 to 4. Therefore there are about 700*4 = 2800 normal casual readers. Anonymous Coward posts are about half of the volume of the typical posts. Therefore there are about 1400 readers who can't be bothered setting up an account. A recent article put the Trolls, who post sexual insults, foul ASCII art pictures and links to vile sites, at about 80 percent of the Slashdot readership. Therefore there are (700+8400+4200)*4 = 19600 trolling readers. This is consistent with the number of Troll posts.

      Due to the troubles of Andover.net, abysmal hit counts and so on, Slashdot went out of business and was taken over by OSDN who run another troubled site. Now OSDN is also dead, its corpse turned over to yet another charnel house.

      All major surveys show that Slashdot has steadily declined in readership. It is very sick and its long term survival prospects are very dim. If Slashdot is to survive at all it will be among geeky hobbyist dabblers. Slashdot continues to decay. Nothing short of a miracle could save it at this point in time. For all practical purposes, Slashdot is dead.

      So why now? Why did Slashdot fail? Once you get over the myriad of incompatible personalities, particularly among the editors who have repeatedly failed to check for serious inaccuracies in their stories (see the FreeBSD 4.5 "release" as a shocking example), it's clear that subscribers will continue to decrease. Using software such as JunkBuster, readers can eliminate adverts without having to pay any money. These two significant factors, along with the corrupted "moderation" scheme (where editors have infinite power over the regular moderators), only confirm yet further that Slashdot's glory days are coming to an end.

      Fact: Slashdot is dying

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