By Dave & Betsy Smith
Technology is both a blessing and a curse. We aging crimefighters remember a time when having a portable radio was an officer safety luxury, you had to find a pay phone to have a private chat with dispatch, and any roll call information that came from outside of your own agency arrived via something called a teletype, or it came in the mail…yes, the mail.
As personal computers became part of the mainstream, many of us had one at home but unless you were with a large metropolitan agency or the Feds, there was probably a lot of lamenting in your agency about when the administration was going to “get with the times” and computerize day-to-day operations. Now we have everything from Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) to paperless reporting; Mobile Data Terminals (MDTs) are being replaced with Mobile Data Browsers (MDBs), and we have wireless Internet access right in our patrol cars. We have the dispatch center programmed into our cell phone’s speed dial and we can silently text our beat partner anytime we want. Best of all, we have an amazing amount of information right at our fingertips. We can research the best tactics, the newest patrol rifles, the most up-to-date statistics any time we want.
Now that we’re firmly ensconced in the Internet Age however, most of us are suffering from some version of “information fatigue” and/or “information overload.” There’s just too much being electronically thrust at us. That’s why we’re so proud to be part of PoliceOne’s 400th Newsletter. Each PoliceOne newsletter is filled with information and training that has been carefully researched and vetted so that it will be easy for you to filter the real “information” from all the “noise!”
Several years ago, while Dave was shooting a video during Police Week at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington DC, he met the PoliceOne crew. They were doing Internet updates of all the activities. Wow! Real-time updates right from the scene, while the video Dave was shooting would need to be edited, scheduled, and then uplinked to satellite subscribers. Today, PoliceOne puts videos right alongside the written news and information, and it’s available to individual officers or entire departments with minimal turnaround time.
Another recent and remarkable innovation has been allowing immediate reader and viewer comments following articles and segments. Many of the comments not only provide insight and humor but also enhance the information and training with the experiences and supplemental insights from readers and trainers from across the world. That’s right…the World!
Those of you who remember the early pioneering days of PoliceOne’s Newsletter will no doubt reflect on the multitude of improvements since its inception. Each editor and writer has added his or her own thoughts and improvements to make PoliceOne practically a “must read” before each shift regardless of your assignment or rank; sort of a “pre-flight checklist” for law enforcement.
As always, PoliceOne recognizes the single most important ingredient for our success and growth: YOU, the reader and viewer. We hope you find the Newsletter an essential and enjoyable part of your preparation and your professional growth. Please continue to give us ideas and feedback as we continue to grow and change to adapt to the risks, opportunities, training, equipment, and information you need to do your job safer and more efficiently.
This is truly a remarkable to time to be in law enforcement and those of us who remember revolvers and radio “blind spots” look around, amazed at the variety of reliable firearms, communications, less lethal weapons, and sources of information and training available today. PoliceOne, with its acquisition of Calibre Press, now extends its tradition of innovation all the way back to 1980 with the publishing of Street Survival, Tactics for Armed Encounters and the development of the “Street Survival” seminar, still the only seminar of it’s kind available to law enforcement today. As we prepare for the 29th year of the “Street Survival” seminar, the much anticipated publication of Chuck Remsberg's fourth book, Blood Lessons, and the next 400 weeks of PoliceOne Newsletters, the one thing that won’t change is your continued role in our mutual success.
Take the time to constantly learn and grow, give us your valuable feedback and ideas, and commit to sharing your knowledge and experience with your brothers and sisters who also wear the badge. We will continue to do our part – the rest is up to you!
Enjoy this newsletter and stay safe!