Saturday, May 01, 2010

A market-based, techie solution to texting while driving by teens

With all the talk about making texting while driving a criminal offense, it's interesting to see folks developing technical solutions to the problem which they're wisely marketing to parents of teens, probably the highest risk group and also a category of consumer with income to spend on the devices.

I don't think Americans will ever stomach mandating these devices in every car, but I can see parents insisting they be installed in their kids' vehicles. Manufacturers may also discover markets among commercial fleets looking to lower insurance rates. A Longview-based company developed and is marketing the product.

FWIW, statutory bans have had no measurable effect on the problem. Arguably a technological solution aimed at high-risk groups involving no criminal penalties at all is a much wiser, more efficient and effective way to go. Not every social problem must (or can) be solved with criminal laws and statutory punishments.


Soronel Haetir said...

It looks pretty suspicious on the face of it but people do in fact die at all ages. And just because someone appears outwardly healthy is no guarantee that something isn't about to go horribly wrong. And I certainly wouldn't take the fact that someone is (or has been, how long was he (presumably?) off the force between time of allegation and charge then trial. It would not surprise me at all if months of such deserved stress could kill someone.

Anonymous said...

Not every social problem must (or can) be solved with criminal laws and statutory punishments.

Agreed. Of course it's not really about solving problems. It's about grandstanding politicians being able to claim to be "doing something" about the moral panic du jour.

machine said...

Here in Florida they have been working to pass a bill to make texting while driving against the law. Great another law!!! one that will not do anything but raise more exploited money for the state,e.g. speed limits don't stop people from speeding! They simpley raise LOTS of money for the State and counties.

Now Opera is heading a "Don't Text While Driving" campaign...Not that bringing awarness isn't a good idea, however the problem isn't a lack of awaireness. It's a lack of concern and a "I am able...I am not who they are talking about".

Sure a nifty techy gadget may reduce some of the problem, but if you really want to ban texting while driving...Ban the source! Ho-ho, I bet all those big cell phone company profits won't allow for such common sense...neither will those few who TRUELY are responsable - like you and me!!!

...the information age belies itself.

john said...

Besides grandstanding politicians---of course!---because they know young people are heavily into texting, Texas will jump on this as another Big Brother revenue-raising adventure. They'll regulate to rob, you betcha. LOOK at the red-light cameras: what law? But $MILLIONS per month.
WHERE ARE THE STATESMEN to stand up for liberty and privacy? MUST the government try to take over everything? What country IS THIS?

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