Police surveillance in a digital world

Posted to Data Sources  |  Tags: ,  |  Nathan Yau

Glenn Smith and Andrew Knapp for the Post and Courier investigate the current police practice of keeping digital record of people’s activities.

Law enforcement agencies have for decades used what’s known as field interview or contact cards to document everything from sketchy activity to random encounters with people on the street. But the digital age has greatly expanded the power and reach of this tool, allowing police to store indefinitely reams of data on those who draw their interest — long after any potential link to a crime has evaporated.

As you might expect, there are certainly advantages for law enforcement to have access to such a database when they try to solve crimes. But it gets weird when data is incorrectly recorded or perhaps recorded too much.

Favorites

Where Bars Outnumber Grocery Stores

A closer look at the age old question of where there are more bars than grocery stores, and vice versa.

Shifting Incomes for American Jobs

For various occupations, the difference between the person who makes the most and the one who makes the least can be significant.

Watching the growth of Walmart – now with 100% more Sam’s Club

The ever so popular Walmart growth map gets an update, and yes, it still looks like a wildfire. Sam’s Club follows soon after, although not nearly as vigorously.

A Day in the Life of Americans

I wanted to see how daily patterns emerge at the individual level and how a person’s entire day plays out. So I simulated 1,000 of them.