Americans find themselves in a state of flux in 2015. Many people are dealing with the hard reality that those who are sworn to protect and serve, often do the exact opposite.
The topic of police behavior is at the forefront of discussions, worldwide. Market reactions to this interest in responsible application of authority as well as interest in the abuse of authority, are popping up online.
Trying to rely on the system, to report on itself, has proven to be a futile task. In instances of police killings alone, the official method for tallying these deaths was shown to be incredibly skewed and inaccurate.
The unaccountable nature of the state, coupled with today's network of technologically savvy activists has paved the way for third party accountability sites that are proving to be quite helpful in the struggle for justice.
Up next in the world of answerable innovation is the site CopScore, aptly named for its interface which allows users to submit, "officer performance reviews."
Anyone can register in a matter of seconds upon going to the site. However, in order to submit a review on an officer, you must know his or her name, department, and title. The form also requires that the registrant specify whether or not the officer arrested them.
If you actually want to post a performance review on CopScore, you will need to sign in and provide the officer's badge number as well.
The site's creator, Arion Hardison, explains that he, "put the badge number there because I did not want people posting fake reviews."
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“I wanted only people that had an actual interaction with the Cop to be able to vote,” said Hardison.
Predicatably, critics of CopScore say that the site will only be used to demonize police officers even more than they are now. However, a quick trip to the site reveals that there are a significant amount of positive reviews. In fact Hardison points out that, "currently there are more positive cop reviews on the site than negative."
Of course there is always room for abuse, as is the case in every system ever created. However, if CopScore gains enough traction, these abuses will likely be met with novel ways to counter them.
The fact that there are currently more positive reviews than negative is quite heartening, after all, rewarding good behavior is magnitudes more efficient than trying to punish the bad. This is why The Free Thought Project, always tries to give credit where credit is due. To verify this, one need only click on our "Good News" section.
One example from CopScore of a positive review, is of Police Chief Chris Magnus from the Richmond Police Department in California. Magnus, acting with an incredible amount of courage, joined the black lives matter protests back in December.
For his fortitude and resolution, Magnus deserves commendation, and CopScore has provided a venue for this commendation.
While this site is in its infancy, it is promising to see the direction it is heading. One day, CopScore or or a site like it, could serve as a hub for reporting, which police officers across the country either strive to get on, or try their damnedest to stay off.