It wasn't too long ago that it seemed as if every community around me was putting up cameras. No, the cameras weren't for security reasons, they were there to "catch speeders and people who run red lights", at least that's how they were sold to "we the people".

Nightly City Traffic
Getty Images/iStockphoto
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Actually, we the people weren't really sold as much as we were told that community leaders felt the electronic monitoring of speed on the roadways and the ability of motorists to come to a complete stop needed to have the human element removed. In place of actual humans, these electronic eyes in the sky would keep us safe, help us lower crashes at intersections, and maybe even keep our skin free from acne.

What we actually got, at least where I live, was a bungled mess of upset citizens who felt the cameras were lying. And then there were others who saw there could be no real penalty assessed by not paying the fines brought on by the cameras so, they just didn't pay them.

Eventually, civic leaders where I live voted to pull the cameras and void the contracts with the company that was literally printing money at the hands or should I say heavy feet of motorists in South Louisiana.

Well, like everything in this world today, there is now a smartphone app that allows you to use your phone's camera to record video and estimate the speed of the vehicle in that video. Developers of the app say that evidence could be turned over to authorities if a crime has been committed.

Speeding Ticket
David Lentz
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Hold. On.Just. A. Minute.

If you thought having a for-profit company taking video and running speed cameras was a bad idea do you really think that giving the "general public" the same ability is going to really help?

Developers of Speedcam Anywhere most certainly think that. They say their app will allow any smartphone to be used as a speed camera. The "evidence" captured on the app can be used to submit a report to local authorities who could, I suppose, send out a citation.

Developers of the app say the connection and communication between law enforcement and the public brought on by the use of the app will only lead to safer streets and better drivers. I think it will lead to neighbor on neighbor violence. but that's just me basing a hypothesis on what I know to be true.

If you think people get mad when you tell them to "get off your lawn" imagine how upset their going to be when they find out you submitted a video of them speeding to the police. I can only imagine the horror of having the self-appointed czar of the neighborhood homeowner's association going door to door showing videos to unsuspecting people at dinner time. It wouldn't be pretty.

Oh, you know somewhere in Acadia Parish or maybe down in New Iberia some of the local "good old boys" are going to have contests to see who can get a "high score" while driving on a major thoroughfare.

11Alive via YouTube
11Alive via YouTube
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If you want to check out the app it's available on Google Play. They are still working to develop the app for iOS but that should be approved shortly. So, would you download and use such an app? Would you use it for good or would you use it simply to create mayhem where you live? Just make sure you record the reactions when you do.

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