MIAMI, March 30, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — RedZone, Breakthrough App For Navigation And Real-time Crime Reporting, Launches On Apple App Store. New clas
Sourced through Scoop.it from: www.prnewswire.com
How would you feel if you bought a house in an area and suddenly found you were living in an area known for crime? I’ve been there and I know what it’s like. We bought our first house in an area like that and sold because it was getting worse and I was traveling away from home 1 day in 3 leaving my wife and young kids behind.
Since I wrote the book a couple of years ago there are now many services where this information is now available. In some places like New Zealand, you can find this information such as provided by the NZ Police but you have to dig a bit to find it. http://www.police.govt.nz/about-us/publications/statistics
In larger countries and cities you can now use apps like RedZone where you can report and find information, which is being compared to car navigation. I’d be keen if I was out on the town for a night to know which parts to avoid right now. There are many more if you search through the app stores for your preferred smartphone operating system.
Crowd sourcing is a great way to get a picture of neighborhoods and can achieve a number of results:
1. It can share a picture of what is going on in a community in real time and historically, including anonymously where often people don’t want to be directly involved.
2. It can help you avoid inadvertently going to places that are potentially unsafe. Some years ago a Dutch location based game was established in Rotterdam which got you to randomly explore the city. For example it gave you options like get on the first bus you see, get off when you see someone walking a dog, then walk 3 blocks to the north etc. They found that sometimes they were guiding people into parts of the city where they might get themselves mugged or at risk. The game was canned.
3. It can provide a warning for people looking to buy or rent in a risky neighborhood where you might not want your kids playing on the street. Conversely it might help you get a neighborhood cleaned up by providing a means for people to draw attention to behaviors they want to stop. For example in the last month in my neighborhood there have been people purporting to represent companies knocking on doors, shops ram raided and other suspicious behaviors. This information is being shared on Facebook, but wouldn’t it be good if it could be shared in an app environment, view-able on a map (which can include generic locations to protect individual people’s privacy).
4. It might help tourists know where and when to visit or avoid locations. I came close to getting mugged on the outskirts of Vegas. On my first trip to NYC the hotel front desk gave me a map of where I could safely go during the day and what parts to avoid after dark. (Very frustrating because some of the music clubs I wanted to go to, were not only in the shaded areas, but I was told that taxis would not come and pick me up.)
5. This location based data can be data mined by Police, Council and other community services with analytics tools and be turned into intelligence to help reduce crime.
I hope to see some apps like this start supporting other parts of the world like Australia and New Zealand. I found an app called Risk Map that is supposed to be global and uses gamification which I liked, but it wants me to pay for the full version if I want location. That essentially ensures that no one in the southern hemisphere will even bother to use it because it only shows crimes in the UK on the free version. How is that global? I’m not going to pay for a premium version of a product where I am the only user in the whole country!
It would make a lot more economic sense to me to have global apps like Parkopedia is for locating a car park. But perhaps it will come down to services like Neighborly or something from the Police themselves.