December 08, 2016



The Boston Police Department has been pushing to buy new software that would let it monitor social-media activity for evidence of possible threats to public safety—at a cost of up to 1.4 million dollars. A few days ago, the Boston City Council held a hearing where this proposal was discussed at length—with some city councilors saying they had deep misgivings and others saying it seemed like an appropriate use of time and money. One of the sharpest critics who testified at that hearing was Kade Crockford, director of the technology for liberty program at the ACLU of Massachusetts. Adam Reilly talked to Crockford at WGBH’s Brighton studios just an hour or two after the hearing wrapped up about the BPD’s proposal and the Boston Regional Intelligence Center, the body that would use the software if it’s purchase. 

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