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Are you being spied on by a GPS?


GeoCraig
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I personally can't stand when people complain that their company is recording their actvities. (not saying that author of thread is said complainer)

 

Companies invest in vehicles, insurance, labor, etc. If people misuse that, the company should be able to track that misuse. Sure, there will be a few false alarms now and then but that's part of doing business.

 

Something else to think about.. Most technology like this comes all from the same thing. Misuse. If people did their jobs, didnt use the company vehicle on weekends and did what they were paid to do technology would not be needed to track these things.

 

One person ruined it for the rest of us. For those of us that do our jobs and do them well I say "track me any way you like". I've got nothing to hide. Do you?

 

--

SpongeRob

rwmech@keenpeople.com

www.keenpeople.com

WPWU826

 

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Verizon of northern NJ has started placing GPS tracking in its vehicles. I seen the software that managers are using to track cars, vans and trucks. It’s pretty nifty stuff.

 

The equipment belongs to the company. As long as they’re not installing it without informing the drivers it’s a non issue. Some managers will use it when necessary, others will use it to micro manage. All you can hope for is a cool boss that’s not looking to get you fired.

 

It's also helped in finding and retrieving stolen vehicles.

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As always, the above statements are just MHO.

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quote:
Originally posted by SpongeRob:

 

Something else to think about.. Most technology like this comes all from the same thing. Misuse. If people did their jobs, didnt use the company vehicle on weekends and did what they were paid to do technology would not be needed to track these things.

 

One person ruined it for the rest of us.


 

First of all, be a little more consistent: Which is it, is it that "people don't do their jobs" or "one person ruined it for the rest of us?"

 

quote:
Originally posted by SpongeRob:

For those of us that do our jobs and do them well I say "track me any way you like". I've got nothing to hide. Do you?


 

Well, this doesn't apply to my profession, since it's pretty obvious if I'm not sitting in my chair in the center of the orchestra "doing my job well," but I despise seeing quotes like that. Just because people have expectations of privacy does not mean they are anything less than exemplary employees. (Yes, I would say the route between scheduled appointments, and any stops made, are matters of privacy.)

 

Do people feel valued as employees knowing that their employer doesn't trust them as far as he can spit? Do people really work harder and more efficiently under such conditions? I think not; surveillance (and the implicit lack of trust) are reasons why employees put forth the minimum effort required.

 

I hope the companies of those with the "I've got nothing to hide; what are you hiding from" mindset implement a "one bathroom break per shift" policy the day they have a stomach virus. icon_rolleyes.gif

 

I also disliked the reference in the article to using the gps device as a replacement for adult supervision/responsibility for children.

 

[This message was edited by BassoonPilot on February 24, 2003 at 02:21 PM.]

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I think the way I would deal with being tracked is just to make it so much of a hassle to do that whoever was tracking me would give up.

 

For example, drive the company car to a strip club, then take a taxi to wherever you're going.

 

If I had a spouse tracking me, drive to a female friend's house, have a friend pick me up, leave the car there overnight, come get it in the morning.

 

Just behave in ways that are so pointless and unpredictable that there is no point in even paying attention to the data.

 

And if someone managed to get a tracking device on my person - god help them - I'd stick it so far up their...

 

ahem, but I digress

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The trucking industry has been doing this for years. There are Police Dept's. Taxi Companies, Power Companies (Niarga Mohawk, NYSEG) several major chain stores also track there vehicles (Sears, WalMart etc). Most of this is because of misuse of the vehicles by employees. Some the routing is done by a combination of GPS and computers. Isn't technology wonderful????

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As a mobile electronics installer, I've actually installed one of these gizmos. It uses an external GPS/cellular antenna which is typically mounted inside the dash just above the instrument cluster. A piece of aluminum foil on top of the dash before you leave an area would effectively disable the GPS, but might not affect the cellular portion.

 

Don't even think about putting those muddy boots in my car.

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quote:
Originally posted by Harrald:

quote:
Originally posted by BassoonPilot:

<>

Do people feel valued as employees knowing that their employer doesn't trust them as far as he can spit? Do people really work harder and more efficiently under such conditions? I think not; surveillance (and the implicit lack of trust) are reasons why employees put forth the minimum effort required.

<>


 

I think in the Verizon case the problem was the _less_ then minimal effort.

 

This is a very deep subject to delve in to. Different companies use this tech for different reasons. No standard answer works for each case.

------------------------------------------------

quote:
Originally posted by BloenCustoms:

<>

A piece of aluminum foil on top of the dash before you leave an area would effectively disable the GPS, but might not affect the cellular portion.

<>


Also in the Verizon case if an employee is caught fooling with the equipment in such a way as to disable it they are looking at possible dismissal.

 

 

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As always, the above statements are just MHO.

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====================================

As always, the above statements are just MHO.

====================================

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quote:
Originally posted by BassoonPilot:

Well, this doesn't apply to my profession, since it's pretty obvious if I'm not sitting in my chair in the center of the orchestra "doing my job well," but I despise seeing quotes like that.


Yep. You say "bassoon" and I say "pretty obvious." But I'm a viola player. I would APPRECIATE tracking by GPS. None of the orchestral composers seem to know that the violas are there. The conductors never look at us. And we always have that "lost" look on our faces.

 

x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x

I was formerly employed by the Department of Redundancy Department, but I don't work there anymore.

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In the case of police patrol units, the GPS allows the CAD (computer assisted dispatch) system to help locate the closest car to a call, regardless of the beat involved. It helps provide better, quicker service to the customer which, in this case, happens to be the taxpayers that ultimately own the equipment.

 

Jeff

http://www.StarsFellOnAlabama.com

http://www.NotAChance.com

If you hide it, they will come....

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quote:
Originally posted by The Leprechauns:

...But I'm a viola player. I would APPRECIATE tracking by GPS. None of the orchestral composers seem to know that the violas are there. The conductors never look at us. And we always have that "lost" look on our faces.


 

Let me assure you that in professional circles, conductors are usually glaring at the violas. And the longer the conductor glares at them, the farther behind the beat they play and the wider their vibrato gets. It's really funny ... we sit there watching as they begin to sweat profusely while under the conductor's scrutiny; the violists at the front of the section play ever softer while those at the back play ever louder ... and later.

 

I'm sure you agree that it is the goal of most violists not to be noticed. But to be fair, no section in any orchestra can play off-beats like (or for as long as) the violas.

 

I was tempted to post the link to the viola joke website, but I'll be kind. icon_wink.gif

 

Back on topic: Do long-haul trucking companies really utilize gps technology? I would think they would avoid it like a plague because of the stringent DOT driver log regulations. I agree that gps tracking technology on some vehicles, like emergency response vehicles, makes a whole lot of sense.

 

[This message was edited by BassoonPilot on February 24, 2003 at 07:28 PM.]

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quote:
Originally posted by The Leprechauns:

But I'm a viola player. I would APPRECIATE tracking by GPS. None of the orchestral composers seem to know that the violas are there. The conductors never look at us. And we always have that "lost" look on our faces.

 

x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x

I was formerly employed by the Department of Redundancy Department, but I don't work there anymore.


 

Violas ROCK! [icon_biggrin.gif]

 

My 8th-grade daughter plays viola. She knows -- as do any REAL music lovers -- that it's the violas that make the rest of the orchestra sound good.

 

Or, as we like to say . . . There are two kinds of people in the world -- those who play the viola, and those who wish they could.

 

There are 10 kinds of people in the world -- those who understand binary, and those who don't. [icon_wink.gif]

 

Violas ROCK! [icon_biggrin.gif] Swimmers RULE! [8D]

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Regardless of how the GPS tracking information is used or why it is collected, do we really want someone looking over our shoulder and watching us.

 

what happens if the information is mis-used and is used against law abiding citizens?? We assume the law works in our favor until we are wrongfully accused by the technology that was mis-used or abused, then we have a whole different viewpoint.

 

This is a civil rights issue and the way i look at it, an invasion of privacy regardless of wether we are law abiding citizens or not.

 

any alternate viewpoints? please, i would like to hear some dissenters.

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I know of several companies (mostly trucking companies) that use the GPS as tracking devices, but the reasons is not just for keeping track of their employees, they mostly use it to keep track of the time and miles ran is different states for tax purposes. Yes the tracking info can be misused to keep a better eye on the driver but as long as you are doing your job and doing it well, most companies do not care if you make an unschelduled stop or two.

 

Just think it will only get worse as more and more companies jump on the bandwagon. I personally do not care, I do my job and I do it well, and if they keep close track of me at work then maybe they will decide I am such a good worker that I deserve more pay.

:&gticon_wink.gif

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quote:
Originally posted by billybob2:

<>

do we really want someone looking over our shoulder and watching us.

<>

what happens if the information is mis-used and is used against law abiding citizens??

<>

This is a civil rights issue and the way i look at it, an invasion of privacy regardless of wether we are law abiding citizens or not.

<>

 

I think you are misunderstanding the tech we are speaking of. This is not being used to track John Q. Public. It's being installed in vehicles by companies to keep track of their equipment and manpower.

 

====================================

As always, the above statements are just MHO.

====================================

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quote:
I think you are misunderstanding the tech we are speaking of. This is not being used to track John Q. Public. It's being installed in vehicles by companies to keep track of their equipment and manpower.

 

Agreed. Most companies are "At-Will". Which means you can work for them or not and they can fire you for just about any reason. This is THEIR property they are tracking. Don't like it, quit.

 

Try this perspective. Why does somone Lojack their car? Theft? Well, if you could Lojack your car and have it track where your KIDS went, would that be so bad? Would you want to know where your kids are after curfew? Would you want to know that your kids are at a party when they said they would be at the movies? How about drunk driving?

 

I know I would want to know this information. Why? Because as a homeowner my kids could wrek the car and my home is at risk. What if I knew about it and could prevent it?

 

Ok, companies work the same way here. You go out and get drunk at a bar on the job for lunch, wreck the car. Who's liable? You? - Probably not, they go after the company.

 

Look at sexual harassment suits, they company is sued. Granted you get fired however the company is what stands to get sued.

 

I find it amazing how many people feel that when they walk into a company and work for an employer they feel that all their private and personal rights apply when they use company property.

 

--

SpongeRob

rwmech@keenpeople.com

www.keenpeople.com

WPWU826

 

Cache'n Retrievers

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quote:
Originally posted by SpongeRob:

<>

Well, if you could Lojack your car and have it track where your KIDS went, would that be so bad? Would you want to know where your kids are after curfew? Would you want to know that your kids are at a party when they said they would be at the movies? How about drunk driving?

<>


 

This is a completely different discussion. Keeping an eye on your companies’ equipment and keeping an eye on your children have nothing to do with each other.

 

Even if my son knew I had placed a tracking device in the car to track him I would feel as if I was spying on him. Trust is something you need to earn. That goes both ways though. This is something that each family would have to work out on their own. There is no standard answer for everyone.

 

====================================

As always, the above statements are just MHO.

====================================

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I don't believe they differ at all. I trust my children but then again I was a teenager myself. I know that I said one thing and did another. I would call anyone a liar that said they never did something behind their parents back.

 

Same goes with company equipment. They wouldnt have hired you if they thought you were untrustworthy.

 

--

SpongeRob

rwmech@keenpeople.com

www.keenpeople.com

WPWU826

 

Cache'n Retrievers

crlogo.gif

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quote:
Originally posted by The Leprechauns:

quote:
Originally posted by BassoonPilot:

Well, this doesn't apply to my profession, since it's pretty obvious if I'm not sitting in my chair in the center of the orchestra "doing my job well," but I despise seeing quotes like that.


Yep. You say "bassoon" and I say "pretty obvious." But I'm a viola player. I would APPRECIATE tracking by GPS. None of the orchestral composers seem to know that the violas are there. The conductors never look at us. And we always have that "lost" look on our faces.

 

x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x

I was formerly employed by the Department of Redundancy Department, but I don't work there anymore.


 

I know that feeling, I played the viola for 8 years. And most of the time the instuctor was vaguly aware that I was there/ not there (I pretty much slacked off when I was there, so I fulfilled the viola playes oath).

 

Wyatt W.

 

The probability of someone watching you is directly proportional to the stupidity of your actions.

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A little about a vehicle tracking system I work with (Straight from our web site):

 

GPS/AVL (Automatic Vehicle Locator)

Global Positioning System (GPS) providing Auto Vehicle Location (AVL) is a relatively new service. LPS began its investigation of this application, as it applies to school transportation, in 1999. At that time, GPS technology was mainly a trucking and emergency vehicle application. LPS has remained at the forefront of this technology as it has evolved.

 

A school district might consider using AVL functions such as:

 

Real time vehicle tracking

Vehicle location history

Emergency alert button for drivers

Bus stop compliance monitoring

Geo-fencing (vehicles leaving prescribed areas)

Railroad crossing monitoring

Student tracking

Pre-arrival notification for special needs students

LPS' systems can transmit data from the vehicle to a dispatch system over commercial cellular networks, radio frequencies, or through a compact flash memory card. LPS will assist a District with the purchase and installation of an AVL system and provide employee training.

*****************************************

 

We use it for school bus locations. It would've come in useful in Pa when that school bus of students was kidnapped since it would have set off an out-of-boundary alarm pretty quickly.

I know of truckers who like the systems, and some who do not.

 

Check out this company, we work with their systems:

http://www.geospatialtech.com/

I don't want my every move tracked, but I think some things, like hazardous chemical trucks should be tracked.

-Jennifer

 

Where am I going? I ain't certain.

When will I get there? I don't know.

All as I know is I am on my way!

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I'm going to have to agree that there's a difference between spying on kids and protecting company equipment.

 

Here are my thoughts though.

 

Sure working for a company is at-will. Don't like it? Quit. Posting in this forum is at-will. If the administrators turn into nazis, quit. Living in your city or town is at-will. Don't like the crime rate? Leave. Keeping a child isn't required by law. Don't like them? Give 'em up for adoption.

 

Oh wait, did I cross a line there?

 

If you never protest or try to fix things you don't like, the world will take advantage of you. You can't always "just quit" because someone did something unfair to you. That's running away from your problems, and it's never a solution. It doesn't matter if your parents or boss have every right in the world to keep tabs on their property, if you don't like it, you have a right to say and do something about it. The perople arguing for it are never going to get me to go "well, gee I guess you're right, having my every move watched for the good of the company is ok." Or "yeah, spying on your kids is fine." Just accept that some people don't like the idea, and will fight it any way they can.

 

And why should I care if someone is spying on their kids? It's not like it's my problem right? Well, it is. I don't want that person in my community. I don't want them to be my boss or my customer or someone who would deal with my children. It's not just an action, it's an attitude. It's an attitude that your child has no rights, that you're better than them. How people act towards their children is an indicator of how they act towards the world.

 

Yeah kids do stuff they're not supposed to. Yeah it would be great to know if they're ditching school or sneaking out or speeding when they're not supposed to. But all of that is part of growing up. Kids are ingenious - they'd just find ways around it. If you're really that worried about it, maybe you shouldn't depend on technology to do your job for you, and start being a better parent.

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No, if some want to regard it as "spying" then that's their opinion but obviously some haven't bothered to look (or want ot look) into what these types of systems are really all about.

 

All these tracking/dispatch type of systems do have some real purposes, actually many purposes and some are more critical then others but if some think they are simply for "spying" then it's time to move on.

 

However expect to see more and more GPS based "solutions" to all sorts of things.

 

Cheers, Kerry.

 

I never get lost icon_smile.gif everybody keeps telling me where to go icon_wink.gif

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Youre absolutely right! People are going to protest and not like it. There are people on the unemployment line every day because they didnt like what their employer was doing. That's your choice and I would never stop you from having that choice, just the same as it is the employers option to say "tough cookies". Protest all you want, but until the laws change your SOL.

 

I support democracy and the law. Until the law changes (if it ever does) the facts remain the same. Employers, Parents have the right - Right or Wrong.

 

--

SpongeRob

rwmech@keenpeople.com

www.keenpeople.com

WPWU826

 

Cache'n Retrievers

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I guess the line between legitimate use and spying is defined by the person who's using the data, and how they use it.

 

 

I think the best way to deal with this is to profit from it. I bet there's a lot of money to be made in the next ten years in commercial counter-intelligence for people screwing around at work, and kids who don't like being watched icon_biggrin.gif

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Just sort of made it up I guess.

 

I'm not sure it's entirely accurate though. What I meant to say was that how people act towards their children is like an unfiltered view of their attitude. If they're generally distrusting, it will be most obvious in how they treat their children.

 

Of course this is just IMHO. I'm not a psychologist or anything.

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quote:
Originally posted by Eli Black:

...the line between legitimate use and spying is defined by the person who's using the data, and how they use it...


And there's the rub! Once this sort of technology is in place, it is a very fine line betweeen how it's used. People can say "well it's to make sure our property isn't misued" but if the van is being misused what's to say the gps tracker isn't misused? The real problem is it doesn't matter if you are doing a good and legitimate job. Like sexual harrassment, it doesn't matter if you really did it or not, the fact that you are accused is what sticks with people. People in the US are not concerned about the homeland security business because they think that they have nothing to worry about because they are not terrorists. But you don't have to actually be one to be accused of it, and then of course it's too late. So that's a long-winded way of saying that although I do not deny that there are some advantages in certain situations, using GPS to track people in any way (either thier vehicles or their cell phones) is BAD and UNAMERICAN. Privacy is a myth and freedom only a memory

 

King Pellinore

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