Courts Uphold Right To Video Police, New Mexico Officer Makes Us Wonder If We Should

Boston.com’s On Liberty blog reports that the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the right of citizens to video police officers, ruling in part that

changes in technology and society have made the lines between private citizen and journalist exceedingly difficult to draw. The proliferation of electronic devices with video-recording capability means that many of our images of current events come from bystanders with a ready cell phone or digital camera rather than a traditional film crew, and news stories are now just as likely to be broken by a blogger at her computer as a reporter at a major newspaper. Such developments make clear why the news-gathering protections of the First Amendment cannot turn on professional credentials or status.

So great was this victory for First Amendment rights and the New Media, that an Albuquerque police officer celebrated by getting caught in flagrante delicto while in uniform. You know, in case there was any question as to why the courts really ruled this way. And if this whole story smacks of Jalopnik-style only-barely-related-to-cars desperation, we’ve got a “Stump the Best And Brightest” challenge to keep things car-centric: what model of vehicle is the officer “laying down the law” on?

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Stump The Best And Brightest: How Did This Opel Vivaro End Up In Illinois?
I spotted this Opel Vivaro CDTI on the University of Illinois campus.How did this apparently-European vehicle end up in Illinois? Opel’s website sugges…
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Stump The Best And Brightest: What Car Had Its 6.2 Liter V8 Pulled By Dan Akerson?

In his Detroit News interview, GM CEO Dan Akerson revealed a minor mystery, which I present for your consideration and discussion:

In a recent meeting with engineers, for example, Akerson pressed them to explain the logic behind putting a big 6.2-liter engine in an unspecified car whose competitor has a 4.4-liter turbocharged engine. The engineers replied: “Well, we want to be able to beat the other guy.”

Akerson responded: “I don’t think the average buyer is going to buy an eight-cylinder, 530-horsepower (car).” His point: Decisions must be supported by a solid business case, and not just for bragging rights or as a marketing tool.

The Cadillac ATS-V seems like the most likely candidate, but then there’s also this to consider:

Akerson, who became CEO Sept. 1 and board chairman Jan. 1, already is weighing in on new vehicles. He recently greenlighted the next generation of the compact Chevrolet Cruze, but vetoed a new engine for a sports car set for production in 18 months.

The ATS is a sedan, not a sports car… so is this a different cancelation, or what? Over to you, B&B…

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Stump The Best And Brightest: TV Star, Incognito Edition
Ben writesSorry if this is not the right way to send something, but this car has been bugging me. It is obviously a disguise job because it was on a TV show.…
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Stump The Best And Brightest: What's Wrong With This Explorer?
Reader Josh sends in this semi-camo’d Explorer from the Mile High city, writing thatThe lady who was in the drivethru at Wendy’s was quite frustr…
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Stump The Best And Brightest: Identify This Mystery Sedan
A tipster sent us these shots of a semi-camouflaged sedan plying Texas’s I-10… can you help identify this mystery machine?
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Stump The Best And Brightest: The Fiat 500's American Changes Edition

This is the interior of the forthcoming Fiat 500 Sport, built in Mexico for the US market [UPDATE: Fiat’s PR team insists that this is not the US-market version… we will revisit the story when real photos come out]. After the jump, you can find a photo of the Italian market Fiat 500’s interior. Spot the differences (there’s one big one we’re thinking of) and win the respect of TTAC’s Best & Brightest. Help us understand why these changes were made, and you’ll be well on your way to becoming the next TTAC comments section superstar.

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Stump The Best And Brightest: Editor's Choice Edition
Yes, dear TTAC readers, your humble Editor-in-Chief was unable to fight his impulse, and is the proud owner of a fine automobile. Which means that he is also…
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Stump The Best And Brightest: To Catch A Hit-And Runner Edition
TTAC’s readers have rightly gained the reputation for being some of the best vehicle/automobilia identifiers on the planet. We keep you on your toes wi…
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  • Bd2 If they let me and the boyz roll around naked in their dealership I'll buy a Chinese car.
  • THX1136 I would not 'knowingly' purchase a Chinese built or brand. I am somewhat skeptical of actual build quality. What I've seen in other Chinese made products show them to be of low quality/poor longevity. They are quite good at 'copying' a design/product, but often they appear to take shortcuts by using less reliable materials and/or parts. And , yes, I know that is not exclusive to Chinese products. When I was younger 'made in Japan' was synonymous with poor quality (check John Entwistle's tune 'Made in Japan' out for a smile). This is not true today as much of Japan's output is considered very favorably and, in some product types, to be of superior quality. I tend to equate the same notion today for things 'made in China'.
  • Mike Beranek No, but I'm for a world where everyone, everywhere buys cars (and everything else) that are sourced and assembled regionally. Shipping big heavy things all over the planet is not a solution.
  • Jeffrey No not for me at this time
  • El scotto Hmm, my VPN and security options have 12-month subscriptions. Car dealers are not accountable to anyone except the owner. Of course, the dealer principles are running around going "state of the art security!", "We need dedicated IT people!" For the next 12 months. The hackers can wait.