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    "Hey Siri, I'm getting arrested": an iOS shortcut to keep a video of his arrest

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    An American iOS user has designed a shortcut to record a video and send a geolocation to a friend in the event of an arrest by the police. A shortcut that works with a simple voice command.

    © MattGush / iStock

    In the United States, the death of George Floyd has triggered a vast wave of protests against police violence, finding an echo in Spain and around the world. A movement that was able to materialize thanks to the video of the arrest of this 46-year-old African-American, leaving no doubt about the conditions of the arrest and the methods used by the incriminated police officers. An iPhone user had the idea to create a shortcut for mobile, allowing to record an arrest through a simple voice command.

    To do this, and once the shortcut is installed on an iPhone, the user just has to say the phrase “Hey Siri, I'm getting arrested”, in English, to start the process. The screen brightness is then dimmed for more discretion, and the Do Not Disturb function is activated. The phone also sends a message to a trusted contact chosen by the user, informing him of the current arrest, with supporting geolocation. Finally, the mobile's front camera is activated and the phone records a video of the event.

    Apparently iphones have a police shortcut link and it does a bunch of things when you tell Siri you're pulled over...?

    This is REALLY important if it's legit, all my iphone ppl need to watch this and share.

    — DesiBae aka Big Horchata (@sarcasticstyle) June 10, 2020

    “I thought it was a good idea to give every citizen the option of having a recording of an arrest in order to remove any 'he said/she said' scenario,” Robert Petersen explained to Fox News. "I honestly didn't think the idea would be as popular as it has been, the response has been overwhelmingly positive." Once registration is complete, a copy is sent to the previously defined trusted contact, and the terminal resumes normal activity.

    Filming the police and broadcasting the images is authorized

    You don't need to be a developer to get this kind of functionality, only designed through the Shortcuts application of iOS. This app allows you to create your own shortcuts containing several steps. Apple's support page gives the following example: "Create a shortcut 'It's time to surf', which searches the weather forecast for surfing, gives you an estimate of your arrival time at the beach and launches your surf playlist”.

    It should also be remembered that the recording of arrests by the police is not illegal either in the United States or in Spain. Some politicians like Eric Ciotti, however, seek to weaken this possibility. Deputy LR tabled a bill on Tuesday, May 26, aimed at prohibiting the “dissemination, by any means whatsoever and whatever the medium, of the image of national police officers, soldiers, police municipal or customs authorities”.

    A circular from the Ministry of the Interior dating from 2008 opposes only two scenarios to the video recording of the police: "for the preservation of traces and clues and for the respect of the secrecy of the investigation and of instruction” and “for safety reasons, in the case of keeping individuals at a distance from an action presenting risks for people in the vicinity”.

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