Big Brother Alive and Well in England: Black Boxes, 'Spy Cars' To Track British Motorists

This image was lost some time after publication.
This image was lost some time after publication.

We could make some obvious comment about Orwell being English; oh, wait, we suppose we just did, didn't we? Okay, pathetic attempts at being vaguely meta aside, England's got a couple of ideas on the burner guaranteed to send civil-liberties activists through the roof. First up, is a proposed black-box program that would record accident data, as well as an incentive program designed to reward drivers who install devices to keep their vehicles within the speed limit at all times. Frankly, we think these speed limiters are unsafe; leaving no headroom to accelerate through a dangerous situation, which is just as valuable a tactic as putting one's faith in a solid pair of brakes.


The second is rampant camera installation in at least 10% of the nation's vehicles to catch toll evaders. While the program currently is targeted toward vehicles owned by the national and municipal governments, we could envision financial incentives offered to private citizens to spy on their fellow men. After all, who does gossip better than the Brits?

Black boxes plan to make cars safer - and slower [Telegraph, UK]; Camera spies in million cars to trap toll cheats [Times, UK]

Big Brother Watch: ber-Scooter Scans License Plates for Stolen Vehicles [Internal]