Police Scanner Transparency

Apr 29, 2013

An ICOM R-7000 Scanner Light. These days all that's needed to listen to police scanners is an internet connection.
Credit Whiskeygonebad via flickr Creative Commons

When shots were fired before midnight on April 18th, curious, concerned people tracked the dramatic killing of one Boston marathon bombing suspect, and the tense manhunt for his younger brother throughout the night. Many watched and listened through online streaming and social media, others followed the intense action on Boston police scanners; some 180,000 people were tuned in to the scanner feeds during peak traffic. And then, it stopped…

Early on Friday morning, Boston law enforcement decided to pull the plug on public eavesdropping of its operation. Tim Murphy, reporter for Mother Jones’s D.C. bureau wrote about that decision and how other cities are dealing with police scanner transparency.