Feeds

Calls to ban hoodie-busting sonic weapon

Campaigners tell Mosquito to 'buzz off'

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Campaigners are calling for hoodie-busting sonic weapon the Mosquito to be banned, claiming it targets innocent young 'uns and is an "infringement of their human rights", the Telegraph reports.

The Mosquito emits a high-pitched whine inaudible to the majority of adults over 30, while causing yoof ne'er-do-wells a level of irritation sufficient to drive them from any premises packing the device. Successful trials a couple of years back in a grocery store in Barry, South Wales, and a shop in inventor Howard Stapleton's home town of Merthyr Tydfil, provoked plenty of interest in the product, and there are now an estimated 3,500 deployed nationwide in the fight against anti-social tearaways.

However, a campaign led by the children's commissioner and backed by civil liberties outfit Liberty says the Mosquito should "Buzz off", as the slogan puts it.

Children's commissioner for England, Sir Al Aynsley-Green, explained: "These devices are indiscriminate and target all children and young people, including babies, regardless of whether they are behaving or misbehaving. 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."

Liberty director Shami Chakrabarti chipped in with: "What type of society uses a low-level sonic weapon on its children? Imagine the outcry if a device was introduced that caused blanket discomfort to people of one race or gender, rather than to our kids."

Stapleton is having none of it, and said he wants "a test case in the courts to firmly establish the legality of his invention".

He countered: "People talk about infringing human rights but what about the human rights of the shopkeeper who is seeing his business collapse because groups of unruly teenagers are driving away his customers? The noise is only emitted over a 15 metre radius and no one is taking away the rights of teenagers to walk away." ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
'Cowardly, venomous trolls' threatened with TWO-YEAR sentences for menacing posts
UK government: 'Taking a stand against a baying cyber-mob'
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Arab States make play for greater government control of the internet
Nerds told to get lost in last-minute power grab bid at UN meeting
Zippy one-liners, broken promises: Doctor Who on the Orient Express
Series finally hits stride, but Clara's U-turn is baffling
Don't bother telling people if you lose their data, say Euro bods
You read that right – with the proviso that it's encrypted
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.