Every so often I hear from readers who mention something they think I might find interesting or might want to mention in a newsletter. I quite enjoy reading these – though I get so many I can’t fit in writing about all these ideas!
Often, of course, I already knew about the thing someone is saying “could you write about so-and-so”. But occasionally it’s new to me!
And the other day I heard from someone saying:
“In Lancashire you can now report crime online by visiting their website. Other forces may have a similar system. It might be worth mentioning this in your weekly e-Newsletter?”
I must admit – I didn’t even know this myself! I had a quick look – it does look like this is true in most areas, though I don’t know for sure it’s all.
Obviously it’s not ideal for emergencies – if you can see someone across the road breaking into a house, you’re still best off calling 999. But for some things it could be easier.
Of course, it’s the kind of thing I wish was totally useless – if there was no crime, there’d be no need to report it. But that’s not going to happen, so it might be worth knowing about.
Since all the different police forces have different websites I can’t give you a link to where you report crime – but you can simply search for the name of your police force along with “report crime online” and it should come up.
You know they say the more things change, the more they stay the same? Not always…
As you know, we recently published some books about using technology to stay closer to friends and family – about keeping in touch.
And it set me thinking about a record, an old 78, that we had at home when I was a little boy.
You see, when Mum was little, her family emigrated to Australia. They came back to England again when she was a bit older but obviously it was a long way away then. (Well, it’s the same distance now, but in practical terms it made it like it was further then.)
After all, she went on a ship to get there (it took 3 months I think) instead of a plane. Letters took an age to get to and fro… making phone calls home was all-but-impossible and obviously there was no video-calling!
So, back to the old record. It was a cracked old 78 that her relations in England had made in a booth. They all got together and each had a moment to say something. Then on the other side they all sang a song.
Then posted it to Australia, where, months later, Mum’s family got it.
It must have been an amazing moment to open that and realise what it was… It meant they could actually hear the voices of the people they’d left behind.
Nowadays, of course, you could easily make a phone call. On a phone or a PC or tablet. Or even a video call. Or instead of sending a record you could record a video on your phone or tablet and send it… or share it with friends and family down the road or anywhere in the world all at once.
It is amazing how much difference it makes – and how many different ways you can use technology like this, to keep in touch better with people, whether they’re across the world or 10 minutes drive away.
Anyway, if you want to know more about the books and how they could help you, have a look here.