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When an amber alert is issued, which in North America here means a child has just been abducted, it can take a while before the public hears it on the radio, sees it on TV, or reads the billboards above the highway.
People with push and GPS enabled smart phones could subscribe to receive amber alerts
with a photo of the child, kidnapper, and lisence plate number. They are not all that frequent here in Vancouver, but they do happen.
Depending on how long ago the kidnapping occurred would determine the search radius. Everyone subscribed to the free service (maybe a small discount off of the system access fee sponsored by the government as incentive) will receive the info promptly.
Imagine if 1000's and 1000's of people all popped their heads up in the radius of the kidnapping, all looking around at the same time for the same child or vehicle.
The longer the alert goes, the greater the radius of people that are notified.
Regular cell customers could also be sent a text or picture text depending on area code for large hunts.
I can't see this as being considered a nuisance by any semi-civilized human being.
Amber Alert home page
[jutta, Aug 11 2008]
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||Aside from finding lost kids, it could tell you about nearby dangers (tornadoes, floods, mad pit bulls, etc).
||i like it.
it would probably be morbid after two days though
||A local amber alert is not common enough. The odds of having one on consecutive days in your specific geographical location are long at best.
||I've never seen one on a highway sign, just heard one on the radio once in 5 years.
||"I can't see this as being considered a nuisance by any semi-civilized human being"
||That logic gets used a lot in this world. "You must agree with me, or you are sub-human".
||Yep. Guilt the world in to doing what I want.