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Discussion: Suspicious people

in: Spike; Spike > 2024-01-23

Jan 25, 2024 11:27 PM # 
I see a lot of this on Nextdoor, the neighborhood app. Someone will post about some fairly innocuous activity, and inevitably more than one person will say "report it to the police!" People are so scared of the least little thing these days and it's really disappointing.
Jan 26, 2024 3:40 AM # 
Funny, I was invited on that app last night. I've now seen who's on it in my local area and deleted it. Batshit cray.
Jan 26, 2024 7:26 PM # 
I don't know if we have Nextdoor for our neighborhood. But I assume it would be awful.

I looked up the call in the police call log. It was for a "suspicious activity" and the location was on the street around the corner from us.
Jan 26, 2024 7:32 PM # 
Our Nextdoor folks have a freakout whenever a coyote is spotted within the nearest 10 square miles.
Jan 26, 2024 9:25 PM # 
Pink Socks:
I am not on Nextdoor, but there is a Facebook group for our community (a small suburb of about ~6500 residents).

It's usually pretty helpful and civil (BIG exception of when talking about fireworks), but there are smaller freakouts about coyotes and bobcats (fun fact: our town's elementary school mascot is the bobcat!), and also about developers bulldozing lots to build more housing, and also about a dog park (we don't have one) vs. horse arena (we do have one).

Sometimes the "suspicious activity" that's shared on the page is warranted: people breaking into mailboxes, porch pirates, people caught on doorbell cameras in the middle of the night.

But other times, it is pretty ridiculous. Last fall there was a guy in the middle of the day, from the middle of the street, taking a few photos. Likely theory was that he was researching real estate comps, but nobody actually talked to him. But the posts were all freaking out about the guy.
Jan 26, 2024 11:09 PM # 
Our neighborhood could use a few coyotes and bobcats. The owls aren't enough to keep the rabbit population low.
Jan 27, 2024 2:35 AM # 
I've seen coyotes and bobcats (and deer and moose) in my semi-rural area less than an hour from Boston. I wonder if people freak out about them. Haven't seen any bears, but Charlie's neighborhood is crawling with them.
Jan 27, 2024 3:27 AM # 
Our Nextdoor was absurd, I joined and quickly noped out of there.

A few days ago there was an incident in Saguaro NP involving a possibly rabid bobcat biting a man. That is the kind of bobcat encounter that I would feel justified freaking out over. I haven't checked Nextdoor.
Jan 27, 2024 5:10 AM # 
I saw a sign at the one of the schools being used for today's sprint race in New Zealand saying "your activities will be viewed by the police". I did wonder, in the unlikely event that the New Plymouth police were actually watching, what they made of everyone running around in all directions.
Jan 27, 2024 7:46 AM # 
Incidentally, the sorts of apps/social media sites that feature reports of "suspicious people" are notorious in Australia, particularly the closer to the tropics you go, for what some researchers diplomatically referred to as "overtly racialised content". I'm guessing this is similar in North America?

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