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It must happen at least three times a day that I'm driving behind another car and say to myself "He's got a dud brake light which he probably doesn't know about because he never drives behind his own car, and I have no way of telling him about it". So he drives around with a dodgy brake light until some
poor mug runs into the back of him. Of course I *could* report him to the police but that would get him into trouble and seems like a huge over-reaction. What about some organisation you could ring up and say "[vehicle number] has a dud left hand brake light", who would then immediately whisk a message off to the vehicle owner alerting them to the problem. Just that. They wouldn't be law enforcers, just problem reporters. It would have to be run by people seen as the "motorist's friend". Maybe the motor manufacturers? Breakdown recovery companies? Not the insurance companies, certainly.
Blameless car reporting is one of the possible uses of this. [jutta, Jun 19 2000]
||Ah, yes, nice one, Jutta. I'd not seen the mail-a-car scheme. That would work, but what I had in mind was something where the message would get to the other person even if they haven't got themselves an e-mail account with the Fault Reporting Association. Mmmm... thinking about it that might upset people on grounds of privacy if this organisation is able to resolve postal addresses from registration numbers. Maybe I've not thought this one through properly. Oh well, that wouldn't be the first time.
||Yes! Very altruistic and practical, too. Privacy be damned. You're performing a public service. What about an Etch-a-Sketch platform from which to broadcast your feelings? You can always erase it. Peripheral uses are pick-up tactics, though naturally we aren't thinking about that.