Scanners are great tools when used by conscientious netizens. The ugly side of it was revealed by the Boston bombing events that even the FBI scolded the mainstream media for numerous false and dangerous reports.
‘For local beat reporters, police scanners are one of the oldest and most reliable tools of the trade, serving as both an early alert system and a virtual ride-along. Now, thanks to a host of easily accessible livestreaming scanner sites and mobile apps, access to this stream of information is everywhere, turning anyone with an internet connection and a Twitter account into their own central dispatch and inundating social streams with false and potentially dangerous information…’
Preventing a repeat of the havoc
The police and FBI create a database of all reports scanner users air or publish
Suspend or ban users according to the severity of their false reports
Boston bombing suspects’ father: My kids were framed
‘An Interfax correspondent has managed to talk on the phone with a man introducing himself as Anzor, the father of Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who are suspected of committing the Boston Marathon bomb attack on Monday.
‘”I learned about the incident from TV. My opinion is: the special services have framed my children, because they are practicing Muslims. Why did they kill Tamerlan? He was supposed to be caught alive. The younger is on the run now. He was a sophomore at a medical school in the U.S. We expected him to come home for vacation. Now I don’t know what’s going to happen. Tell you once again: I believe special services have framed my children,” the man said…’
How Can We Condemn Boston Murders But Excuse U.S. Bombing of Civilians?
‘One obvious response is that, unlike the Boston bombers, the U.S. pilots did not want to harm civilians. Their target was a Taliban commander. The U.S. military prefers not to kill civilians and often apologizes when it does. Intention matters, morally and legally; intention is what distinguishes murder from manslaughter. But if you keep doing something over and over again, at some point apologizing and saying you didn’t mean it becomes meaningless. Doesn’t it?
‘The U.S. clearly has a double standard for judging killing of civilians, but it’s not just that we value American lives more than non-American lives…’