Smartphone videos of racial police violence have triggered nationwide protests, showing the importance of recording interactions with police. This Siri shortcut makes that easier.
Once the free shortcut is loaded onto an iPhone, all a driver has to do is say “Hey Siri, I’m getting pulled over.” Siri will then automatically dim the phone, pause any music being played, and record video from the phone’s front-facing camera, according to The Verge. The shortcut can also send a user’s current location and a copy of the video to an emergency contact, but it requires confirmation via popup messages.
The shortcut was created by Robert Petersen, who first published it in 2018, and has updated it continually since then, according to The Verge. The app is gaining traction after the May 25 death of George Floyd when a police officer kneeled on his neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds and was caught on video in the act.
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Installing the shortcut is a bit more complicated than other pieces of software. First off, it requires iOS 12 or newer, as well as the Shortcuts app, which can be downloaded from Apple’s App Store. With those two items installed, use the phone’s Safari web browser (other browsers don’t work, according to The Verge) to access the link to download the shortcut.
For the program to work, the phone needs to be able to load unverified shortcuts, and the program needs location access. Other permissions may be needed as well, so it’s best to give the shortcut a dry run before using it for real, The Verge noted.
There is no direct Android equivalent to this Siri shortcut, but other programs have been developed over the years to discreetly record interactions with police.