Monday, March 3, 2008

The Mosquito Audio Device - Orwellian Discrimination Against Teens or Quality of Life Protection for Everyone Else?

You Tube video of BBC report on Mosquito high pitched audio dispersal device

WCBS TV reported on a new architectural control device, some call it an example of discriminatory architecture against the young, that according to Architectures of Control:
produces a high frequency sound (less audible to older people) in order to drive away teenagers hanging around in front of shops.
The device, called the Mosquito, first showed up in England but is now being tried out in a Jamaica Queens apartment building to prevent teenagers from hanging around the lobby.

There is now a growing Buzz Off movement in England, led by England's Children's Commissioner to ban the Mosquito because:
“These devices are indiscriminate and target all children and young people, including babies, regardless of whether they are behaving or misbehaving,” Sir Al told the BBC. “The use of measures such as these are simply demonising children and young people, creating a dangerous and widening divide between the young and the old.”
The view of English shopkeepers is very different. According to the Washington Post:
... he has never seen anything quite as effective for dispersing young people. Two years ago, he affixed the box, which has a picture of a mosquito bug on it, a few feet above the entrance to his store.

He estimated that petty crime has decreased 80 percent. He balked at the idea that he was infringing on human rights. Youngsters loiter outside his shop and pester customers to buy them alcohol and cigarettes, he said.

"They harass customers, and I lose business," Parshad said. "You can't keep everybody happy. You have to look after the customer first."
There are about 3500 units installed in Great Britain and 200 in the United States. None on Roosevelt Island as far as I know. But then again, I can't hear it.


Anonymous said...

Playing classical music also works.

Anonymous said...

I think this mosquito is completely unfair and that is why I am campaigning against it also If I get in the Breckland Youth Council I will try to have them banned any teens reading this go to