back to article Police ad urges: 'Trust no one'

A new ad campaign by the Metropolitan Police warns the public to be on the alert for strangers who look at them in a funny way, and to check the contents of their neighbours’ bins. Suggestions that the campaign may be a tad alarmist have been dismissed, the police arguing they are only doing what is necessary to protect the …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    wonder if we will get a wall out of this?

  2. peter garner

    No, but seriously..

    "Ibrahim and a number of co-defendants: they had used hydrogen peroxide"

    First photographers, now hair stylists feel the wrath of the government's security clampdown. Who shall be next, I wonder?

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Become a police informer citizen! Inform on neighbours, friends, strangers and, parents, all allegations taken as fact, fabulous prizes to be won! Respect to be earned! Party status to be gained. Become an informant today!

    If you arn't an informant citizen, why arn't you?

  4. Cameron Colley

    It's sad really.

    I used to think of police officers as [mainly] people who wanted to protect our society -- now I just see them as a bunch of jack-booted thugs whose job it is to make someone's Powerpoint presentation look better.

    I'm sure I'm not the only one who would hesitate to report anything genuinely suspicious to the police lest I become a suspect myself or ruin an innocent person's life.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    Missed a qualifier

    The whole line is "Trust no one; Especially us."

  6. Anonymous Coward

    Jacqui Smith Talking Up Terror

    And on telly today, Jacqui Smith is talking up terror.

    It's a bit of a "suspicious" coincidence, isn't it? Sounds like a co-ordinated effort: government and police gearing up towards the G-20 protests.

  7. censored

    It's time.

    Armed revolution is only a few steps away.

  8. Belvedere Mulholland

    Wasting Police time?

    One wonders if it is possible to waste police time these days.

    It used to be a big deal but I guess if I shop everyone who looks a bit funny it will be OK?

    Or is there a fine line between clever and stupid?

  9. IndianaJ

    Heard the ad in Swindon too

    Though I think that was because Heart just took over our local station.

    Heart FM sort out your ad targetting please! We don't want none of tha' there London nannying down 'ere ta!

  10. The BigYin


    Get the public into a state of fear and they will beg for their freedoms to be removed. They will ignore the fact that they are safer now then they ever have been, it is merely the perception that has changed. I don't even lock my front door - there is no real reason to do so.

    Fear over terrorists. Fear over immigrants. Fear of paedos. "Please Mr. Politician, can we all have bar-codes on our foreheads. *I* have nothing to hide and thus nothing to fear, but my neighbour objects - they must be dirty terrorists! ARG! SAVE ME!"

    It is a sick, sad world when we must be more concerned about our own police and politicians. The government running rough-shod over the democratic process is a far bigger threat to us than any (almost certainly fictional) terrorist could ever be.

  11. Marky W
    Black Helicopters

    During the war....

    This really makes me uncomfortable.

    I suspect the rozzers think they are appealing to our wartime spirit; working together to face a (greatly exaggerated) threat to us all.

    However to me, and I suspect a lot of other Reg readers, it smells like the ugly bastard child of McCarthyism and the Stazi.

    I'd emigrate, but I don't know where to go. US - f*ck no, Canada - too cold, Oz - firewall bobbins, NZ - too far from anywhere. Any ideas? English speaking only please, I'm too lazy to learn any foreign.

  12. Gordon Ross Silver badge

    McCarthyism in the 21st Centruary

    Sounds like Joseph McCarthy is alive and well here in the UK..

  13. Jemma

    ...and all of it with a straight face too..

    hmmm... talk about pot calling the kettle black...

    Bunch of right wing nazis the police around my way and I dont mind who sees me say it. I have every right to.

    So if I see some effete blokes in nice black and silver uniform dress with matching 'Deaths Head' accessories I'll be sure to call the local coppers....

    Oh, wait.....

    \Totenkopf... because its what they wear at home in front of the mirror when the wife and kids are out...

  14. Anonymous Coward

    NAZIISM is rife

    Lets see, spy on your neighbours, report them for suspicious behaviour and bin contents or even for entertaining strange people.

    This is the law of decent which fuelled state killings much loved by communists and Nazis alike.

    I do not like where this is taking us.


    I read somewhere that more peole die each year in the UK as a result of crashes than have been killed by terrorism throughout all recorded history.

    Talk about scaremongring.

  15. Stu


    This whole 'photography is terrorist preparation' thing is more bollocks than I care to visualise thank you very much. A particular sore point in this paranoid age we live in.

    Look at it this way - In the planning for the biggest terrorist attack of the 21st century, just how important to the whole process of flying those planes into the WTC was taking photos of them?

    I mean they could have taken photos, but its not difficult to do so in a non-suspicious manner whatever that might be. Its not like major terrorist hotspots also double up as tourist zones or anything is it.

    And if they did take photos for planning, just how would they compare to publicity photos put out by the tower owners in terms of effective aeroplane-to-tower targetting strategy? No comparison.


    Staring suspiciously at CCTV cams eh!? It surely must be a member of Al-Quaeda!

  16. Matthew Brown

    Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot...

    At least they were honest about it.

  17. Anonymous Coward

    Trust no one?

    We don't trust the Police most of the time, so there's a start.

    Modern technology has allowed a "feature-creep" for surveillance - people shouldn't be held in fear. Thats no democratic or free. Might as well be a dictator, least you know where you stand.

  18. The Fuzzy Wotnot
    Thumb Down

    So it starts...

    "Trust no one! Your neighbour could be a raving loony revolutionary! Report them today for cash prizes!"

    Jesus, not this old crap about making bombs at home! I can go to any Superdrug shop or garden centre and get all the bits I need to make weapons, then down to the library for a GCSE physics revision guide for the instructions. I don't need the combined might of the Black September to help me start irradicating whatever section of society is getting on my wick today!

    Tell you one mob we should be bleedin' trust anymore, bloody Wacky J and that one-eyed, knocked-kneed Scots pillock!

  19. Anonymous Coward

    If it wasn't so sad, it would be funny

    Honestly - empowering people to anonymously (because surely that's what confidential means?) report people for having a bag of lawn feed (Faisal of Croydon, you with the green lawn, you're under arrest) is simply a joke.

    With no training, access to some PDF posters and sound-bytes coming at you from your radio, everyone who's anyone will be calling up to report people who've pissed them off in a significant manner in the last week or two.

    Taxis - cutting people up will mean you're labelled a terrorist, your DNA is on file and you have to prove you're not. Tourists - don't you dare wheel your heavy luggage along the road, stopping to take pictures as you go along. You'll be locked up and the key thrown away. Anyone not white in the wrong place at the wrong time will be reported by the BNP.

    You get the idea......

    Or, actually, nobody will call in as apathy and ignorance will overwhelm them. Here's hoping - after all, the danger from those in power is now far more of a threat and more likely to impact us today than a terror plot.

  20. Bod


    Heard these ads on the radio recently and just confirms yet again that Orwell's 1984 continues to come true. It just got the date slightly out that's all.

    Won't be long before I'm stopped for using a camera I'm sure. I already get dirty looks and now those people are encourage to report me for being suspicious.

  21. Anonymous Coward

    Its the First rule....

    of a Police State.... Suspect Everyone!

    *\. Yep! I'm Against them!

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Staring at surveilence cameras

    Personally, I think we've got every right to be eyeing up surveilance cameras. Who watches the watchmen?

    Whomever is behind this at the Met should be shot. Where is our Government in all this?

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Why this paranoia now?

    Back during the "Troubles", the threat was very real yet no-one went around poking in each others rubbish bins or banning train-spotters incase they were terrorists in disguise.

    So why now? Perhaps those currently in control smoked too much wacky-baccie back in the 70's and 80's and are now suffering from a full blown psychosis as a result?

  24. Richard
    Thumb Up

    Know your rights

    Straight from the (corrupt) horses mouth:

    Note the bit on not having to surrender personal details. This is a point almost ALL officers fail to mention. Also, most stop-and-searches are carried out "on the record" meaning although they are not supposed to, very often officers record the details for holding on file.

    If you are stop-and-search'ed, inform the officer of your rights and assert that you're not up for any unlawful conduct on their part.

    -- Richard

  25. Anonymous Coward

    Is that Mad Eye Mooney?

    I believe "trust no one" was one of his lines.

    And he was nabbed when someone was banging around in his dustbins.

    But Voldemort is out of office now, so why are we still worried about the Death Eaters?

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    Bootnote - Cynical but true...

    Its the same as police seizing cameras and the like. Police; a law unto themselves....

    Anon for obvious reasons. Sure El Reg will have to comply with a data request very shortly.....

  27. chris

    and report all suspicious activities to Big Brother

    It time for the kids to shop their parents again.

    Oh happy days

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Not Just the Met

    Its a nationwide thing, I keep hearing the ads on national radio. "This is the sound of a bomb not going off".

    I do find the whole thing extremely worrying, we never had this Stasi style "Citizens, your neighbour might be a terrorist, report them to us, and sleep soundly at night" sort of attitude when the IRA were running round the place blowing people up. Why are Muslim fundamentalists more dangerous than the IRA? Or is this simply a way of using fear to move us into a police state?

  29. John A Blackley

    Who's surprised?

    This, after all, is the logical next step in the sequence that goes: 1. Reduce the number of on-street police. 2. Replace on-street police with cameras and find that this is not an effective alternative. 3. Enlist the curtain-twitchers, busybodies and disaffected to do the police forces' detective work for them.

    And the next logical step after this? Well, I can't describe it but if you can locate anyone who lived in the USSR I'm sure they'll be able to.

  30. Adam Silver badge

    Not suspicious

    "However, failure to walk through an arch on request is, itself, suspicious - and therefore grounds for a s1 search. QED."

    IIRC failing to submit to a search is specifically mentioned in the Home Office PACE guidelines as *not* being grounds for a s1 search.

  31. Nebulo

    @AC 12:44

    Spot on. I already don't trust anything senior to a police constable (most of whom, in my experience, are actually quite decent and normal people); after this nasty little utterance I shall regretfully have to extend my distrust down to them too.

    Oh, and I'll stop loking "suspiciously" at snooping CCTV cameras when there are none to look suspiciously at. They are, after all, the tools of those who are destroying our quality of life, and the perfect indicator of the authorities' complete absence of trust in *us*.

    That do yer, copper?

    Mine's the one studded with high power IREDs.

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    staring "suspiciously" at CCTV cameras

    What? They want to ban one of the simple pleasures I have left? Am I freaking them out by staring at the camera? Good. Tossers.

  33. General A. Annoying
    Thumb Down

    "doing what is necessary to protect the public in dangerous times"

    A bit like VIKI in I, Robot.

    Fucking scaremongers.

  34. Steve Glover


    Isn't it "Stay Alert. Trust no-one. And keep your T^Hlaser handy"?

  35. theManWhoWasThursday

    Be careful...

    Don't forget that terrorists have been known to disguise themselves in the uniforms of public servants, so be doubly-suspicious of anyone in a uniform asking questions or taking an interest in their surroundings.and the doings of members of the public.

    And then go remind the police what "public servants" is actually supposed to mean.

  36. Scott
    Black Helicopters

    @Cameron Colley

    If you report a true crime to the police more often than not nothing will be done about it as in the past year me and a few people i know have had to report crime to the police but nothing was ever done after the report was filed, they did not even contact me or the other people back to follow up or inform us the case had been dropped but as the article says report your neighbour for having too many hair products in there bin and the terrorist police will be round to kick the door in on there lovely over-time.

  37. alain williams Silver badge

    Who does this really benefit ?

    Those who have a job looking for terrorists or sell 'security' products.

    But if the cops live in an environment where they suspect everyone, they will end up seeing suspicious activity when there is none. This feeds back on itself; they end up trying to out do each other on identifying suspicious activity.

    Will I now be done for making a non British values statement ?

    I think that the whole security issue is a big threat to the British way of life, as well as hugely costly.

  38. Paul R
    Black Helicopters

    Trust noone

    You don't want me to trust anyone? OK, well, I guess I'll start with the police then.

  39. censored

    @ The BigYin

    There is a reason to lock your front door. Not to keep people out - if they want to break in, they will. But to satisfy your insurance company when you need to claim...

  40. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    @ censored

    "Armed revolution isn't far away"

    I think you misunderstand, they took away our guns long ago. Much easier to control an unarmed population isn't it.

  41. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Be worried about your neighbours

    If you're planning on doing a bit of DIY, decorating or fixing up the garden; you'd best hope your neighbours are all trained chemists and can recognise the legitimate uses for household chemicals.

    Terry Gilliam's 'Brazil' had the perfect slogan for The Home Office:

    'Be Safe, Be Suspicious'

  42. Oz

    Trust no-one

    "Police ad urges: 'Trust no one'"... Indeed - especially not Wacky Jacqui and her cronies.

    Ratting on your neighbours was quite popular in the Second World War. The "perps" were taken away, without trial, and mostly killed. Here we are in 2009 doing pretty much the same thing - innocent people being held without trial or recourse, and it f**king stinks. At least the majority won't be killed, but there's always time.

  43. Britt Johnston

    war on terror stopped when George W left office

    It's not just that war on terror is an unhealthy state of mind.

    Staring suspiciously at a someone in a cemtex jacket is more likely to trigger an explosive response.

  44. Muscleguy


    That NZ is a long way from anywhere is part of the attraction. As is that the foreign policy is to all intents and purposes non aligned so the only people who hate us are the Aussies when we beat them at something. The terrorists will be shooting lots of other people long before they get to me with my nice black passport. A very much more free society than here too. Soon as I figure out how to earn a decent crust I'm off back in a flash.

  45. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fear mongering

    Poster: "A bomb won't go off here because weeks before a shopper reported someone studying the CCTV cameras"

    So let me get this straight, if the shopper hadn't reported their suspicion, a bomb would definitely have gone off in that street. Or if the CCTV camera wasn't there a bomb would definitely have gone off. Or if someone hadn't been looking at the CCTV camera.

    Booom, a bomb would have gone off. For real? And you're not scare mongering idiots trying to drive the population into fear? No power grab going on?

    I can't believe that rank and file Rozzers are happy with what's going on.

  46. Wolf

    Hello, police?

    I'd like to report a strange man dressed in blue with a tall funny hat. He's staring at passers-by in a suspicious manner and he gives me a bad feeling. He's even *armed* with a nasty looking billy-club and he could be one of those SM types cause I noticed he's carrying what look suspiciously like restraints.

    I'll bet he's just looking for some young girl that catches his fancy...better send somebody round pretty quick before something really bad goes down.

    See? :) What's more suspicious than that?

  47. Juan Inamillion
    Black Helicopters

    Spoiler tactics

    Recently I've thought of staring at CCTV cameras, especially the ones in public spaces. Sounds a bit looney but if lots of people did it - point and stare- it might just make the operatives really really pissed off.

    I've also thought we should all take lots more pictures - most people now have camera phones so it's easy. At the end of the day you can delete them. Having your phone keylock turned on will prevent any Dibble looking and/or deleting pictures should you be 'approached'.

    And at demos/riots I think it's essential that as many people as possible record the events and upload them to the interweb ASAP.

    It's also worth remembering that most phones are quite reasonable voice recorders too, a little less obvious than video.... You could even leave it on in your top pocket while talking to plod...

    Just a suggestion - 'Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?'

  48. Paul

    Nothing to hide nothing to fear.

    Anyone exposing the contents of their bin to their neighbours clearly has "nothing to hide" and QED, cannot be a terrorist.

    If the public are being asked to watch the people watching the cameras, what are the cameras for?

  49. Hollerith

    The smiling face of brainwashing

    Heard our Jacquie on BBC Radio 4 this morning saying that where they can't nail someone under the law, they will 'challenge' -- the idea she put over very well is that they will bend themselves into pretzels trying to make it look as if some law covers behaviour The Gov't don't like and, if they fail, they will simply put the pressure on, clout the poor sods with anything they find.

    Meanwhile, the police will try to reduce us to a mass of gibbering twitching zombies, spying on each other, trusting no one, and supinely obeying every last 'sugestion'. Because that's the way we defend our values.

    But the Govt and the police aren't feared of turning the UK into Orwell-land: it's their obvious aim.

  50. EnricoSuarve

    Report Thy Neighbour?

    When I rumage through my neighbours bin he gives me funny looks and I've seen him eyeing my CCTV in an odd way

    Should I report him once or multiple times? If I find another odd bleach bottle in his rubbish which takes precedence?

    A scared pulic need to know

    All praise Jacqui, all hail the motherland

  51. Alien8n

    @ No but seriously

    To be fair hairdressers don't buy their hydrogen peroxide by the litre...

    Let's face it, while our govt isn't murdering people left right and centre in the name of security (unless you happen to be a Brazilian immigrant) we do have a police system in place that would make Josef Stalin and Adolf Hitler proud. We have certainly overstepped the mark when the govt and the police are actively campaigning for EVERYONE to be treated as suspects.

    As stated, at the height of The Troubles there were more IRA bombs going off in a single year than have gone off in the UK since the WTC. Today in 2008 I am safer from terrorism than I was in 1988. Say what you like about Thatcher, but if anyone had a need for greater security powers it was her, yet it's only this current lot that seem to want them.

    And just for the pro BNPers out there, it's not just muslims that are plotting to bomb people. Members of the BNP have also been convicted of plotting to bomb mosques in order to create a race war within this country. For a parallel, look at Germany during 1931-32, Hitler gained power after promising to stop the rising violence in the country. What they neglected to tell people was that it was Hitler's own people who were creating the violence, the same people who later went on to create the SS.

    Those who give up their freedoms for security don't deserve freedom and won't get security.

  52. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters


    but what's the point in all that when instead of going out and photographing stuff anyonecan check it out on StreetView. Hydrogen peroxide bombs?? Another FUD, far more explosive stuff can be found in Tesco on the street corner. Bombs ?? It seems that no-one gives a f... about food manufacturers. Reporting on your neighbours? Aldous Huxley comes to mind... "All conditioning aims at that: making people like their unescapable social destiny"?

  53. Graham Marsden
    Thumb Down


    Be Pure, Be Vigilant, BEHAVE!

  54. Christoph

    My local terrorists

    There's a place near me that brazenly keeps stocks of the most lethal bacteriological toxin known. They actually advertise it on the shop front! There's a clear sign saying 'Botox'.

  55. al
    Paris Hilton

    People taking photos ?

    Doesn't it sound way too close to google street view ?

    Paris, coz she might report you.

  56. Anonymous Coward

    @Juan Inamillion

    "I've also thought we should all take lots more pictures - most people now have camera phones so it's easy. At the end of the day you can delete them. Having your phone keylock turned on will prevent any Dibble looking and/or deleting pictures should you be 'approached'."

    under RIPA plod can demand you unlock the phone, or you'll get 2 years in chokey.

  57. Anonymous Coward

    Met Police Feedback Page

    The Met have a feedback page:

    I'm honestly too scared to actually make a complaint about their fear-mongering myself, for fear that I will fall under suspicion. After all, if I've got nothing to hide, what problem could I possibly have with their counter-terror efforts?

    I'm also feeling increasingly reluctant to travel into London. With my long hair and beard - for I use Linux - I fear I will fall under suspicion. No, I'm not making this up, I really am, literally, a long-haired beardy type. And I really am using Linux. And I genuinely am starting to fear that I will be suspected, simply because I might look, to some people, like I might be suspicious.

  58. Paul


    I've just seen someone driving slowly in a black car taking pictures of EVERYTHING!

  59. EnricoSuarve

    @Know your rights by Richard

    I vote anybody who's stopped and searched from now on tells the police they consider themselves of middle east origin

    That should f### their stats nicely ;0)

  60. Anonymous Coward

    CCTV and demos

    Any bets on the CCTV cameras in central London *not* mysteriously malfunctioning during any G20 protests ?

  61. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    My neighbour said "I hate Big Brother" whilst watching Channel 4.

    You should see the hoops a parent has to jump through to help out in any of the Scout organisation activities.

    I'm sure you'd get more encouragement from the government if you wanted to start up a local branch of the Spies or the Junior Anti-Sex League.

  62. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Interesting Gestapo facts...

    Researchers have recently discovered that the Gestapo was a much smaller organisation than thought, yet it weilded incredible power. Many reasonalbly sized German towns had no more than a handful of Gestapo officers. Their power was built on their network of 'informants' who often settled petty sqabbles by making unsubstantiated accusations against their neighbours, relatives and friends.

    sound familiar?

  63. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    In all

    likelyhood there is someone who is more of a danger to freedom than 'terrorists' reading this.

    Since there is no clear definition of terrorism I say the police are terrorists.

    There are enought intelligent people worried about what you are doing to give serious cause for concern about what is happening in this country. I just hope that I am not here (before you start tightly restricting emigration, I give it 2 years) when the [--- ] hits the fan.

  64. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up


    up for mass emailing suspicious behaviour to the police.. Ill keep a log book.

    9:30 am : Drove past 2 people looking suspicious in their car as they drove past a 30 ph sign thus setting it off. Licence plate no: ....


    And what happens if you claim you are photographing 'suspicious' behaviour when the police try to seize your camera.

    Since suspicious is a bull subjective word you cant be proved wrong. 'Sorry officer, I was suspicious of the way the camera was looking at me'

  65. The Dorset Rambler
    Black Helicopters

    Remember the miners?

    Why so surprised?

    When our law 'enforcers' prevented the miners from using the road system of this country at the behest of our political 'servants' the first nail in the coffin of our freedom was well and truly driven in...

  66. Scott

    Just realised

    If you can seee in someones bin they have over filled it and thats a £120 fine and a criminal record as far as i'm aware?

  67. kevin biswas

    Great idea.......

    Just report absolutely everything which might possibly be construed as being the remotest bit suspicious, especially if it is being done by someone you don't like (local MP ?) Then the system will be so busy chasing stupid red herrings that it will disappear into it's own asshole. Although perhaps a Freudian slip of a kind, this is probably just some fluff by some bullshit department with a budget to finish real quick...isn't the end of the financial year nigh ?

    As for "looking suspiciously at CCTV cameras" does making w**ker signs count as suspicious, or just seditious ?

  68. davefb

    Is it really so different?

    To the 70'/80's ? Except now we have lots of internet forums to moan about it.

    It certainly was ( and still is ?) the case that shop staff look for 'devices' and are trained about what to do for firebombs in stores , how to take code words etc. Obviously the greatest loser in all this were the myriads of left-butty boxes blown up due to rush hour commuters leaving them on the train..

  69. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: If it wasn't so sad, it would be funny

    >everyone who's anyone will be calling up to report people who've pissed them off in a significant >manner in the last week or two.

    You may be writing in jest but during the second world war such settling of scores was the main reason the French falsely informed on their neighbours. However post war it appears the every French person was an active member of the resistance, even the ones who weren't alive at the time and no doubt a few that were already dead, so maybe the informants weren't always lying.

  70. Rab S

    list of sus people

    Gordon Brown

    waki jacqi


    jack straw

    any mbr of BT that think Phorm was a good idea

    any employee of Phorm

    any labour MP

    any mbr of the police that thinks this is a good idea...

    wonder how that list would go down?

  71. Anonymous Coward

    The Forever War...

    It's another expression of the current politics of fear. The police have become enthusiastic participants in bogus social and moral panics such as 'The War on Terror' and the ever-present 'epidemic' of paedophiles ready to jump our kids on every street corner, behind every computer monitor. First you create the fear, then you stoke it and keep it high in the public's consciousness via carefully targeted 'campaigns' (i.e. propaganda) to reinforce the message at regular intervals.

    While all that is being done, simultaneous 'amendments' to civil and criminal law encompass an ever-widening circle of new offences, criminalising more and more in the process and casting the net of suspicion over everyone (want to volunteer to help underprivileged kids? Better get yourself government-approved first just in case you are are already a criminal). It's a slow-burn - like the proverbial frog in the pan. In the end, we have the police linking paedophiles with terrorism (no joke - it has happened already).

    Don't forget whose agenda such bogeymen serve: vested interests in the public and private sector whose very reason for being (i.e. their livelihoods) depend on the public believing these risks are a clear and present danger to all. Politicians are merely the witless, complicit vessels through which these more shadowy organisations can influence public policy and ultimately the law of the land itself, taking away all of our freedoms.

    All you have to do is scare parents. Just scare 'em. Tell 'em their kids are in constant danger from perverts and suicide bombers. It's genuinely amazing what otherwise fairly sensible, intelligent people will willingly agree to once you qualify your attacks on civil liberty with such arguments. It will never end and it will only get worse. Real soon.

  72. Chris Simmons
    Black Helicopters

    FARK IT!

    A greenlit front-page link on FARK, under the tag "Nanny State" has has a limerick response from TF'er MaxxLarge, well up to his usual standard:

    "The global community talks:

    Stop watching your people like hawks.

    I'll show no surprise

    If this should give rise

    To mobs dressing up as Guy Fawkes."

    Well done Jim, I applaud you and a nice Alan Moore reference as well.

  73. Eugene Goodrich
    Paris Hilton

    Losing the cold war

    Is it this way in Ireland and Scotland, too? Or might a yank still feel like visiting either of those places? Because, your police aren't making me feel very "safe".

    Paris, because I'd like to visit 'er.

  74. 4irw4y

    Cure From Police CCTV

    Britannia, your future freedom depends of how carefully you will follow the next advise.

    If there is anyone here who is able to gather a flash-mob... savvy?

    1) yes, a hundred of people starring at cameras simultaneously at, for example, 13 hrs/1pm on a daily basis, during the whole week, they may speak up anything, let the bobbies read your lips;

    2) a dozen of coloured people, gathered together, taking lots of shots (photo) at the same time.

    The effect increases manyfold if a hundred coloured people will be simultaneously taking shots (photo) of CCTV cameras on a daily basis, and let the bobbies read their lips.

    These simple actions will make them sorry they had chosen to work in police.

    If nothing works (there are some clever bobbies in UK), there is a good Russian proverb for such case: "If the door to heart is locked, one can knock at liver".

    @ Marky W, Tue 24 Mar 1250 - "I'd emigrate, but I don't know where to go":

    An old Jew enters the immigration office and says, "Wanna move, young lady". - "Where to" - she asks. - "Still neither I do know". She gave him a globe and told him to find the country. The old man turned it eastwards-westwards and asks, "Do you have another globe"?


  75. Peyton

    Just do what we do in the States

    Spend millions to come up with a highly sophisticated system of color-coded homeland security threat levels, next set that bad-boy to orange, and forget about it! Couldn't be easier!

  76. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge
    Black Helicopters

    I'm a terrorist

    You're a terrorist.

    We're all terrorists.

    That seems to be where we are rapidly heading.

  77. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Disinfect your kitchen.

    Not doing so every week is far more likely to kill you than terrorism.

  78. Sillyfellow

    camera spies

    these invasive cctv cameras everywhere piss me off proper. even though i am doing nothing wrong they make me feel uncomfortable and i hate the fact that i have no idea who is watching me.

    if 'staring suspiciously' at these cameras is upsetting to the watchers, then GOOD. i will make a point of doing this at every opportunity. they have no right to invade my privacy. period.

    oh, and if i see a neighbour or anyone rifling though my trash, for whatever reason, they will get a bunch of five upside the head. is that suspicious? does that mean i have something to hide? NO it means that i expect people to respect my privacy (and not mess trash everywhere).

  79. Nigel

    I'm buggered then !

    I often look around at CCTV cameras to count how many I'm probably on at one time, especially in supermarkets etc. That's me done for !

    Mine's the one that deflects the light falling on it and renders me invisible, please !

  80. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: @Know your rights by Richard

    >I vote anybody who's stopped and searched from now on tells the police they consider themselves of middle east origin

    Tell them your're of African origin, not as provocative but at least you'll be telling the truth.

  81. Steve

    @ @ Cameron Colley

    "If you report a true crime to the police more often than not nothing will be done about it as in the past year me and a few people i know have had to report crime to the police but nothing was ever done after the report was filed,"

    I can beat that - two weeks ago a friend of mine reported two people breaking into a house. He could see them climbing over the fence with a hefty bag and working on the windows and he knew for a fact that neither of them was the 80yr old lady who lived their.

    The police response - it "wasn't a priority". An on-fucking-going burglary at a premise who's owner could well keel over with a heart attack should she discover them in the act was not deemed enough of a priority to get them off their arses. When he offered to go outside with a bat and chase them off the police told him that he would be arrested for assault if he caused any injuries.

  82. Anonymous Coward

    you WERE looking at the camera

    plod 1 : you look suspicious to me

    BLAM! BLAM! BLAM! thud

    plod 2: solved now, innit

  83. Dr Strangelove
    Thumb Up

    Lol! looking too confident?

    Reminds me of an old Not The 9 O'Clock News sketch, a plod was being told off by his sarge for arresting the same man for trumpted up reasons over a hundred times . He had previously been nicked for 'looking at me in a funny way' and had just been done four 'being in possession of curly black hair and thick lips'.

    Oh how the ridiculous exaggeration made me laugh, oh wait...

  84. MinionZero

    Another day another step towards 1984 ... ENOUGH!

    Bloody hell, so now they want citizen police informers!.

    As for "people staring "suspiciously" at CCTV cameras."

    Err??... hang on. I stare at CCTV cameras, but I don't consider its suspicious. I do it with a look of growing dismay on my face. But I guess to the ever more self-righteous and growing Police State, any question they are wrong, is something they cannot consider, as they are only doing it to protect us from *criminals*. (The question is as they protect us, who is going to protect us from them!). (I said *criminals*, because our ruling elite decide the laws, so they choose what is considered illegal, as the now infamous section 152 is showing, they re-write laws to suit their own goals, at our expense).

    This up side down country is getting ever more out of control, being run by a bunch of self-righteous, close minded, plutocratic crooks, robbing us blind of billions of tax payers money, to prop up their rich lifestyles and their rich friends lifestyles, while they build Big Brother to watch us all, to see if any of us dares to stand up and speak out against them all. After all speaking out is now illegal, as demonstrated by the right to protest is now illegal anywhere near them. etc.. etc.. etc.. so many new rules, all ultimately to protect them in power, not us as they wish us to believe.

    So now they want citizen police informers. Wow. So much fear. We have had years of fear, fear, fear. Fear this, fear that. fear, fear, fear. I'm tired of being afraid. Where can I buy a Guy Fawkes mask.

    I forget, is it we should be worrying about the terrorists from Eurasia or is it Eastasia this week? ... I would ask the Ministry of Peace, but they would just report me to the Thought Police. I can't ask the Ministry of Truth, because to do so, implies I'm not already totally brain washed into the current doctrine. I guess then I need to go to the Ministry of Love, so they can lock me in Room 101 until I'm utterly convinced 2 + 2 = 5

    Meanwhile our rich plutocratic ruling crooks continue to plunder our tax money and have a wonderful time with their rich friends, while millions suffer for their actions and inactions.

    I've never been that interested in politics, but over the past few years, I've now had enough. Enough fear. Enough of the arrogant self-righteous crooks in power. Time to build a new open source Big Brother where open government is forced on them. Time to watch the watchers. We cannot stop their Big Brother, so now its time to play them at their own game and we greatly out number them. We can watch them and combine a lot of info on them just as they can on all of us. They are elected to do a job, by us. They work for us. I've seen enough. I've had enough. To all plutocrats regardless of political party, you have all now gone too far. Time to be reined in. I'm tired of being afraid. Now I'm getting angry. Time to build a new open source Big Brother to watch and highlight the moves of the self-righteous crooks in power.

  85. Luther Blissett

    When it's too hard to weep

    A new ad campaign by the Metropolitan Police warns the public to be on the alert for strangers who look at them [ie the Met] in a funny way, and to check the contents of their [ie the Mets'] neighbours’ bins. Suggestions that the campaign may be a tad alarmist have been dismissed, the police arguing they are only doing what is necessary to protect the public in dangerous times. [As they increasingly are for the Met].

    I suggest the group most in danger in the UK right now is the bankers.

  86. Dynamatrix

    its coming up to revolution time

    Far from being afraid, all this makes me very angry. Labour has turned the UK into a fascist regime.

  87. Alasdair


    I flew back into the country early Saturday morning and the first thing I saw on the underground was teh poster about reporting people looking at CCTV cameras. TBH it made me want to be a criminal and tear all the posters down. What a disgusting, shameful country we live in. I want to go back to the open and free place I was on holiday in: the Middle East!!

  88. Paul Kinsler

    Staring suspiciously at CCTV?

    I propose a new form of protest: Gather in large groups to stare back at the suspicious staring of the CCTV/ surveillance cameras.

    And if there's anyway of making the demonstrators' eyes glow red at the same time, that'd be brilliant.

  89. RW

    Has anyone reported Ms. Jacqueline Smith yet?

    For conspiracy to overthrow the rule of law in the UK and impose a police state?

    Fark linked to the MPS site:

    When I saw this, I didn't know whether to shit my britches, laugh hysterically, or stand up and shout "Hallelujah". Do the fools behind this realize how transparent their propaganda is, how utterly risible it is?

    Sadly, I couldn't find an email address to which to report the infamous schemer and plotter, Ms. Jacqueline Smith, and I'm not willing to phone her in from Canada, but someone (many someones, by preference) should report her. Hazel Blears, Harriet Harman, and a bunch of males also need to be reported too: Myners, Goodwin, and assorted other fat cats and pols.

    From where I sit, it looks like the only way to undo the British police state is to fire all the cops and start from scratch, hiring only wannabe-plods who pass in depth psychological testing to block the would-be tinpot types.

    It's inconceivable that NuLab doesn't realize the incredible harm they've done to the simple ideal of personal freedom for which the UK was once (but no more) renowned.

    Britain, I weep for you.

  90. Sam Mason

    I blame the media!

    The media comes down far too hard on any little mistake made; the natural response (of, i.e. politicians and police) to this is to make sure you don't make any mistakes. To do this you've got to be keep taking a tougher line than before and we quickly get into situations like we're seeing here.

    I'm basically plagiarizing Bruce Schneier's argument:

  91. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I might start my own political party and go after the "we don't care if we get blown up we just want to be free" vote. I'd immediately dismantle all security measures and put out posters telling people to "Don't worry, be happy".

    In fact screw the party , anyone wealthy out there want to bankroll the posters?

  92. MnM


    That's some good honest police work there, except that they're not getting their man, they're getting everyone.

    It's not true, is it?

  93. Jonathan

    Mein Kampf

    Welcome to Nazi Britain. Remember all citizens are equal, but some, such as those who have paid their Lordship Dues or are fortunate to have the right parents, are more fortunate than others. Any attempt at original thought will land you in prison.

    Heil Brown/Cameron/Wacky Jacqui/Current Police Commissioner (since they all belong to the same elitest group anyway)

  94. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Orwell, the prophet

    I have to think George is rolling over in his grave, laughing his (now very skinny) ass off! Once upon a time, the Metropolitan Police (aka Scotland Yard) were widely respected, circumspect in their behavior, and respectful of peoples' rights. When did they take it into their heads that they are the Ministry of Truth? England has become that which it most fears - a terrorist state. The police and government have become the terrorists.

  95. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Here's a thought

    If you live next door to a policeman, the more senior the better, go look through their rubbish bin next time it's out.

  96. Paul Gomme

    I am just so utterly lost for words... can someone please say some on all our behalfs at:

  97. David


    Don't walk on the cracks in the pavement. I expect that's "reasonable grounds" for being a terrorist.

  98. Anonymous Coward

    Commenting on the Reg.. simply not sufficient. We are still all alone, behind our keyboards.

    That is all.

  99. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So you know how to make a bomb

    So when I report to my local plod that my neighbours have the chemicals for making a bomb, I'll be 'detained without trial' for knowing what these chemicals are. I'll be offshored for a proper interrogation no doubt.

    It's a win win for the police and wackie then.

  100. Anonymous Coward

    And so the terrorists have won...

    They have shown that our free and open society is not free and open. They have exposed the evil lurking within the hearts of those in power and they are demonstrating that a free and open democratic society can easily be made to embraces the policies, tactics, and strategies of former enemies such as the Nazis. The current fear-mongering mocks those who went to war and gave their all to defend freedom from tyranny such as theirs.

    The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

  101. Pat

    Democracy and the UK seriously damaged!

    Damage by terrorists = !!!

    Damage by ZaNuLabour = !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I won't be doing anything that would possibly have been considered dangerous, harmful or illegal 20 years ago, but I now realise that sometime over the next few years I'm likely to be criminalised. (Camera, computer, brain - I'm dangerous, me.)

    Still, musn't grumble.

    (There'll be a law against it.)

  102. David Mullen

    Somebody shop me

    I am a chemist, sitting around my outside my house are various spent 25L and 205L chemical drums including one marked 32% hydogen peroxide.

    Personally I use them for growing flowers (particularly gladioli) the larger ones make cheap water butts.

    No Officer I am beer drinking bacon eating Dawkensian. May in an entirely racist way thank god (who doesn't exist) that I am white.

  103. blue
    Black Helicopters

    New Labour

    New Stasi.

  104. jake Silver badge

    Sex Pistols said it first ...

    Long live the Queen, it's a fascist regime, made you a moron, potential H-bomb ...


    I used to really enjoy visiting England (Scotland, Wales, N.Ireland, Yorkshire, Cornwall, et alii). Somehow, I suspect that I won't be bothering showing my wife around any time soon.

  105. Anonymous Coward

    Once again

    My skin is crawling. You think you've heard just about the worst "grate britain is a Stalinist state" story, and then another just pops out of the woodwork to top it by some margin. This is beginning to resemble a coup, a real one, just done in slow motion.

    I can safely say I won't be poking around my neighbours bins, and even if I was to see something a bit odd the rozzers are the last people I'd be telling, because frankly, I really don't trust them any more. I don't fancy reporting old Ahmed downstairs for his apparent obsession with hair dyeing, and be responsible for him spending 42 days (or whatever - I've lost track, it changes so often) getting bitch-slapped with a bacon sarnie in some Algerian dungeon till he reveals the secrets of perfect highlights to our little uniformed thugs. Then gets let off on the maybe-you're-a-terrorist rap, but gets charged under the extreme porn law for his men-only S&M collection and deported back to his (long, long ago) native Egypt for some non-consensual S&M of his own with the guys from the Mukhbarat and a direct line to the national grid.

    Our brainless coppers might just scare half the population into reporting anything they see as deviant, but the other half will now say nothing even with reasonable suspicion lest they end up on the wrong end themselves. The police are way, way out of control.

    Joke, because this country is, only it's not funny

  106. Loki

    @Marky W

    Come to Russia. Sure, its not a real democracy in some ways, but our leaders only have occasional light showers of terror and despotism. Otherwise life if pretty fine if you can handle a slightly lower standard of living.

  107. Walking Turtle

    Liquid Terror On Demand

    UK, the 'Merkins may be a little bit behind from where y'all are, Urban Surveillance Infrastructure-wise, but the "brighter" ones are catching on:

    See the 18 March edition of for the whole story. The top State Terrorizers reliably deny ever doing such a thing - and then they do it, every time. Calling everything what it is not at all times while going about "making it real" as they go along. Standard sodding sandlot bully psycho-warfare paradigm.

    PARADIGM, I said. Has not someone of late semi-solidly and semi-secretly jiggered the Compass to draw ovoid? Was not that "Square" Craftily cut and calibrated at exactly 93 Degrees, Brothers? So what manner of Enduring Structure can EVER be made by the use of such INFERIOR builders' tools as THESE, HM?

    I'd lay a nice wager the Level stands half a bubble off plumb, too. Is it not a Gravity Vortex of Mammon-driven Falsity that cants the very Plumb-Line so?

    By the Master's Ring on my Hitch-hiker's Thumb, truly the stench of it all is entirely and utterly infandous in ways that MP George Galloway (Respect Party) could NEVER be, even on his WORST behaviour all day long! AWAY with it all! (But not with Mr. Galloway; let's have MANY MORE of his kind sort all up and down the line, PLEASE!)

    As for "Looking Suspiciously at" those HIDEOUS CCTV cams: Seems to be no need to actually TAKE any TerrorPix - just pantomiming the shutterbugging action with a BIG SMILE for the hairy-eyeballed plods in the climate-controlled booth Squarely Above You should do it. No need to lock the mainstay phone; just use a spare with nothing at all in the contact DB, hm? Heh - batteries neither included nor required for this one. Just recording the serial number and being sure to get one's personal property back in-hand once it has been plodded-into seems right from here, is all.

    Um, also, one gathers from that the Gentle Brits have these days got anti-bully laws on their books that red-blooded 'Merkins wouldn't happily allow - anything wrong with applyin' 'em in a broad yet sharply specific sense to the sad sado-security situation on that side of The Pond? Should London be counted as the Big Workplace, then surely the co-infandous "Wackie Jacqui" Smith is indeed the Big Bully who over-arches and HARASSES all Londoners in THEIR WORK-PLACE?

    Just gathering a little wool against the coming winter, is all. Let all their weapons turn against them. Every last intruding oppressing überscrutinizing nosey one of 'em. Help Make It So where you can. And SHAME on them ALL!

    Mine's the one with the somewhat fragile pint bottle of home-made whup-ass in the pocket, and the entirely dead but Very Shiny cellular cam-phone in the other... Oh hello, Mr. Fawkes! How was your flight? Good to see you here! Lookit, these chaps need a wee hand for a bit...

  108. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Is this why "they" want ID Cards

    If you trust no-one what can you trust. Your Trusty ID Card, that's what. A million & 1 handy uses......

  109. Maboza Richie

    Sad times

    The witch hunts of the 21st century are about to begin, Joseph McCarthy rises from his grave to oversee proceedings, assisted by Joseph Stalin. Meanwhile, Yevgeny Zamyatin rises from his grave to write a sequal to We, and George Orwell types follow-up to 1984, writing in the wind and rain as he can't find anywhere that allows him to smoke indoors. Sad times indeed.

  110. Julian I-Do-Stuff

    Thin Ice?

    No. Very thick. Seems Blighty isn't so much as standing on the edge of a slippery slope as flying down one on its arse to a great big crevasse.

    Time to get out the ice axe.

  111. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Lets overload them!

    Its simple, once a day take a photo of a cctv camera in London, make sure your visible to it and then delete it, or better still, email it to the Met (can they cope with the load?), add in some staring and pointing to give it some emphasis as well! Try to look foreign as well, that will help.

    The simple overload of thousands of people doing it will bring the policy to a grinding halt in a matter of days.

    Anyway, who needs to recce a target, thats what streetview is for!

    Paris, brighter than Wacki Jacqui and more sensible to boot.

  112. Anonymous Coward

    I'm almost there now actually

    I don't trust the Police, I don't trust anyone at the Council and I certainly don't trust anyone in the Government.

    In fact I trust that they are lying corrupt thieving scumbags who deserve to be shot, chopped up,burnt to ashes, hung again, then shot some more.

    Obviously that must be what the message is trying to achieve.

  113. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Here's a thought

    And find yourself in a deep dark pit for collecting information that may be useful to terrorists? I think not.

  114. John Sturdy

    A step towards a one-party state

    Remember the pro-hunting protestors being banned from protesting near the Labour party headquarters?

    Being prepared to protect specifically the current government party seems to me to be the first small step to a one-party system. There are a lot of other steps before they'll get there, but I reckon that was a step in that direction. Then they can start defining themselves as "The Social Party (tm)" and implying that other parties are anti-social, and you know what happens to people who Behave Anti-Socially!

    A long way off, but I reckon they're facing that direction.

    PS for those wondering where to move: the Republic of Ireland is OK if there are still any jobs by the time you get here; the politicians aren't control freaks even if they are "the best that money can buy"!

  115. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @A step towards a one-party state

    That reminds me of the chocolate underground and the "good for you" party - who have infact outlawed anything that isn't good for you. Mmmm grey neutriant globules for lunch dinner and breakfast.

  116. Matt Siddall


    "Following Operation Rhyme, Dhiren Barot was sentenced to 30 years’ jail in 2006 for conspiracy to murder: he had previously filmed security measures - including CCTV - in various US cities."

    conspiracy to murder... and filming the CCTV cameras helped with this? Obviously not a lot or he wouldn't have been caught...

    He was also known to eat and drink, and had been spotted breathing on more than one occasion. Should you see any of your fellow citizens performing such acts, be sure to report them!

    What next? Based on this flimsy logic, the first time a Trainspotter (already a slightly dodgy activity from a terror-cop's point of view) commits any crime, they're all guilty of it...

  117. Anonymous Coward

    Being an Informer to be Compulsory?

    On Monday, the Ministry of Justice published its green paper on "Rights and responsibilities: developing our constitutional framework":-

    It sounds like we're all going to have to become informers, if we're to retain various rights. I'm not making this up.

    "A national debate is launched today to explore whether a clearer common understanding of our rights and responsibilities might be built by articulating them in a single text – a Bill of Rights and Responsibilities.


    " The paper lists some of the responsibilities we have, and asks if some should be explicitly stated in a single document, including:

    "* obeying the law, reporting crimes and cooperating with prosecution agencies


    So, being citizens/informers of a Stasi State comes top of the list.

    Fortunately, this is also an opportunity for us to contribute to the "debate":-

  118. Stewart Haywood

    I Blame TV Myself.

    Its all these here violent police programs like The Sweeny, Dixon of Dock Green, CI5, Morse, and so on. Plod now thinks that he has to behave like the heros on TV and has become insensitised to the suffering of the ordinary people because of the unmentionable horrors splashed across the screen in his very home. We take these young, impressionable and tormented boys, some with as many as 2 O-levels and a pet hamster, force feed them violent police dramas and RoboCop games, dress them in black uniforms with silly hats, and wonder why they turn out anti-social.

    Won't anyone think of the poor boys in the force.

  119. Quirkafleeg

    Back to Reality

    "Betray your friends and family. Fabulous prizes to be won."

    Coming soon…?

  120. Andy Worth

    Typical alarmist crap....

    If I caught my neighbour going through my bins I'd probably pop outside and give him a swift kick in the balls, because I'd assume that he was trying to find something to be able to steal my identity. It's not that I particularly distrust my neighbour, but I find somebody going through my bins as being a bit suspicious.

    So which do the police want us to do? Report people seen rifling through our bins as potential identity thieves or rifle through our neighbours bins to see if they are a terrorist?

  121. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Being an Informer to be Compulsory?

    When government says "debate" it means the "decision". "We're having a national debate" "We're showing the nation our decision" there is no debate in western democracy just a series of ever worsening choices

  122. Anonymous Coward

    National CCTV Camera Staring Day?

    Identify a hundred CCTV cameras in sensitive areas, and have at least 10 people in front of each, staring intently at them for maybe 15mins?

  123. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "Londoners are being asked to trust their instincts and report suspicious behaviour to help combat terrorist activity."

    I was in London the other day and I noticed a large number of men and women dressed in black annoying the populace and generally getting in the way. They're easily identifiable from the tall black hats most of them seemed to be wearing. Can we get something done about these people?

    (P.S. It's nice to see the government reclaiming the original use of the word 'terrorist'

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