E-Tickets

     Raise your hand if you know what an e-ticket is.
     No fair looking it up. This is a generational test.
     If you thought an e-ticket was an entry to the best rides at Disneyland, you’re an old dude/dudette like me.
     The new definition is a tad different. Equally entertaining and exciting to someone with a warped imagination like me, but definitely different.
     Check out this link.
     You may now be able to get an e-ticket from your friendly neighborhood police officer who’s caught you speeding or not stopping for a fraction of a second before turning right on red.
     There is now something called the eCitationCoalition that is marketing hand-held computer-linked devices for issuing traffic tickets.
     Let me paint the scene. You get pulled over by an officer and instead of pulling out a paper pad of tickets, he/she pulls out a “digital assistant,” scans your driver’s license, punches in some numbers, and then goes back to the patrol car to print your paper ticket.
     Why now? That’s not my question. It’s on the Coalition’s website, followed by its answers.
     Well, one reason is that “eCitation improves office safety by reducing the amount of time an officer is out of the patrol car or parked on the roadside and distracted by paperwork.”
     As we all know, electronic devices aren’t distracting at all.
     And it’s a lot faster to press a bunch of buttons – accurately – go back to the police car, print out the ticket, and then go back to the miscreant than it is to write an old-fashioned ticket and hand it to the wrongdoer.
     Maybe it’s a generational thing.
     Then there’s this : “eCitation increases officer job satisfaction by making their jobs safer and increasing the time they can spend serving and protecting the community. … eCitation equips them to do the jobs they were hired to do – serve and protect – rather than filling out forms.”
     Ummm. Maybe I’m nitpicking here, but aren’t the forms still being filled out on the computer screens? And are you safer if you have more time to hunt down criminals?
     Anyhow, it’s a brave new electronic world for traffic cops. What could possibly go wrong?
     Hee, hee, hee.
     Oh, let me count the ways – hacking, dyslexic officers, viruses, lousy typists (lowcy tapists?), wi-fi disruption, battery failure, officers with chubby fingers, officers who hate computers, power outages, running out of printer ink, typos, sticky keys, dropping (aka “Oopsies!”) ….
     OK, I’m tired of counting.
     But you can see why this is entertaining and exciting. I can’t wait for the litigation.
     
     Looking on the dark side: I have no idea whether this is effective marketing or not, but I’ve noticed that a Los Angeles lawyer has put out a series of press releases with a common theme: nagging.
     Headlines include:
     “Cameron Y. Brock Stresses the Importance of Safety During Student Athletics.”
     “Cameron Yadidi Brock Speaks Out Against Distracted Driving.”
     “Cameron Yadidi Brock Urges Film and TV Professionals to Keep Production Safe.”
     I expect the next one will be: “Cameron Y. Brock Ponders Why You Never Call, You Never Write. Are You Eating? You Look So Thin.”
     I think this is comfort lawyering.

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