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There is an App for That

There is an App for That

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Published by BallStateEnglish335

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Published by: BallStateEnglish335 on May 06, 2011
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Rachel KochEng 335.01Donnelly04/12/11There’s an App for ThatBy now we are all familiar with the phrase “There is an App for that.” Theinsinuation is that there is an application to do just about anything. There is an appthat can turn the lights on and off in your house. There is an app that allowsstrangers to give and get opinions of outfits. And even apps to make movies. So itdoesn’t seem like it would be far off that an app would exists that would allowvirtually anyone to spy on some one else. In facts it’s not far off that time is here.In September 2010 iTunes released a new app called the Patriot App. In thisapplication, that now costs. $.99, allows the purchaser to see the Federal Bureau of Investigation most wanted list. It also has a setting where with the terror level posted. But the most interesting part of the app however is its suspicious activityreport. This reporting agent that is on the app allows anyone to report what he or she believe to be suspicious activity to the FBI, EPA, GAO, and to the CDC.Anything they find suspicious they can just simply take a picture or a video of theaction-taking place and fill out a pre-established form and submit it to whichever  branch of the government it is fit to send it to.It is a fantastic concept. It completely eliminates the Orwellian theory of a
 
Big Brother having constant surveillance. It would turn neighbors againstneighbors. They’re would be no more secretes, privacy, and no need to be honestwith thoughts and feelings because some one might interpret them as wrong. Atleast that is one way of looking at it.According to the creators of the Patriot App “the app was founded on the belief that citizens can provide the most sophisticated and broad network of eyesand ear necessary to prevent terrorism, crime, environmental negligence, or other malicious behavior.” It wasn’t designed to cause paranoia or to create a group of informants. It was designed to allow patriots to take a more pro-active roll with thegovernment. It’s at the owner’s fingertips in case a crisis should accrue. Dr. RoySwinger, who is one of the app’s creators, said that the Patriot App already usesthe sources people have available to them but taking the logical step forward andmaking it mobile. Essentially condensing all the different ways in which we couldcontact the government but now it is just one click way, all available on iTunes.Swinger also stated that he wanted to show that apps could be used for somethingmore than just entertainment, that they could be used for something important.And like any true creator Swinger only sees the positive aspects that can comefrom this app.The creators seem to be the only ones who are seeing this application as a positive. Techie-Buzz.com likens the Patriot App to Big Brother with an iPhone.The prospect of sending information to the government is scary, in fact they say“Americans value their personal privacy and the thought of their neighbors
 
instantly reporting them to Uncle Sam is scary.” What could be truer than thatstatement? We are supposed to be able to trust our neighbors, but instead we are being forced to quiver behind closed doors and whisper our opinions. Even though before sentiments could be shared with the government, it was only a phone callaway (then being put on hold waiting for an answering machine to pick up). Butnow a recording can be made in a click then sent away in one more click.It shouldn’t come as a surprise that there is now an app that can do thesethings. An app that just so happens to be named after the Patriot Act, acontroversial act that bypasses constitutional rights allowing the government tohave roving wire taps without a warrant, among other things. This application that just so happens to puts those practices at our fingertips. These practices that manyreviewers compare to East Germany and the secrete police known as the Gestapo.Many comments on in the App Store say the exact same thing. That thisapplication would be perfect for the Nazi’s and the system they had set up,reporting whom ever to gain points with the government. Many others have voicedthe opinion that the Patriot App is the opposite of what it suggests. They say thePatriot App is creating a full-fledged police state that will help make witch-huntseasier on the government.The main concern though for many of the app consumers is whom they areexpecting us to report on? There are not terrorist around every corner nor are thereillegal immigrants waiting around to get their picture taken. To the opinion of many it should be the government that we should be reporting on, especially for 

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