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Tags cell phones , John Rodgers , Vermont issues , Vermont politics

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Old 12th January 2020, 11:17 AM   #1
Ranb
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Vermont Cell Phone Ban

A Vermont senator proposed a ban on cell phones for anyone under 21. He says they're more dangerous than guns
https://www.cnn.com/2020/01/10/polit...rnd/index.html
Quote:
Rodgers, who represents the rural Essex-Orleans district, said the bill intentionally parallels the state's gun legislation. In it, he highlights the dangers of texting and driving and the role social media plays in bullying and suicide and suggests "mass shooters of younger ages" have used their phones to research previous shootings.
Restricting access to information is never going to be popular.

Quote:
He knows it won't make it past the judiciary committee.
"I'm not going to push for the bill to pass," he said. "I wouldn't vote for the thing. This is just to make a point."

That point: In Vermont, it's illegal for anyone under 21 to buy a firearm. Rodgers suggested that the same age restrictions should apply to cellphone use.
Posturing is usually a waste of time in my opinion.

The bill text; https://legislature.vermont.gov/Docu...Introduced.pdf

Based on the attitudes of people like this sponsor, it is only a matter of time before the age of majority or the voting age is raised to 21.

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Old 12th January 2020, 08:21 PM   #2
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One may as well ban driving for people under 21.

My phone automatically refuses all calls and will not alert me to texts when I'm driving. I don't know whether this is due to speed, or to the Bluetooth connection to the car itself, but it seems to me that connecting it to speed would be a reasonable solution. Don't bother me at all by default, if I actually want to talk while driving, it has to be via bluetooth. And this sort of distraction is hardly restricted to teens - I've seen a particularly amazing man eating with one hand, while holding a cell phone to his ear with another, while speeding down the Mass Pike (which, if you've been around Boston...).

But that's just my knee-jerk reaction. banning cell phones for anyone under 21 is a political stunt, meant to draw attention to an issue more than anything else.
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Old 12th January 2020, 08:23 PM   #3
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Just an attempt at pro-gun sarcasm.
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Old 12th January 2020, 08:26 PM   #4
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You know politicians I don't think you've achieved the level of easy efficiency necessary to be wasting time passing "metaphor votes I know won't go anywhere."

Jesus Christ if we can keep passive aggressiveness out of anything can it be our legislative processes?
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Old 12th January 2020, 08:31 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Mumbles View Post
One may as well ban driving for people under 21.

My phone automatically refuses all calls and will not alert me to texts when I'm driving. I don't know whether this is due to speed, or to the Bluetooth connection to the car itself, but it seems to me that connecting it to speed would be a reasonable solution. Don't bother me at all by default, if I actually want to talk while driving, it has to be via bluetooth. And this sort of distraction is hardly restricted to teens - I've seen a particularly amazing man eating with one hand, while holding a cell phone to his ear with another, while speeding down the Mass Pike (which, if you've been around Boston...).

But that's just my knee-jerk reaction. banning cell phones for anyone under 21 is a political stunt, meant to draw attention to an issue more than anything else.
I saw an idiot doing a crossword puzzle while driving on a freeway.
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Old 12th January 2020, 10:01 PM   #6
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I'm kind of amused by American standards.

You'd trust a 15 year old with a 2,000 lb heavy machine but get queasy when they buy condoms?
Trust 17 year olds to serve your country overseas but won't let them drink fermented malt barley.

I think this 21+ cell phone nonsense is out of line.
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Old 12th January 2020, 11:31 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Venom View Post
I'm kind of amused by American standards.

You'd trust a 15 year old with a 2,000 lb heavy machine but get queasy when they buy condoms?
Trust 17 year olds to serve your country overseas but won't let them drink fermented malt barley.

I think this 21+ cell phone nonsense is out of line.
Gotta agree with you there.
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Old 13th January 2020, 12:21 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Venom View Post
Trust 17 year olds to serve your country overseas....
As far as I know, a person can join the military in the USA while still 17, but can't deploy overseas until they are 18.
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Old 13th January 2020, 06:31 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Stacyhs View Post
I saw an idiot doing a crossword puzzle while driving on a freeway.
You can't know if they're an idiot unless you see what clues they missed.
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Old 13th January 2020, 06:36 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Mumbles View Post
My phone automatically refuses all calls and will not alert me to texts when I'm driving. I don't know whether this is due to speed, or to the Bluetooth connection to the car itself, but it seems to me that connecting it to speed would be a reasonable solution. Don't bother me at all by default, if I actually want to talk while driving, it has to be via bluetooth.
How would your phone know if you were driving or just a passenger? Or on a bus or train?
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Last edited by erlando; 13th January 2020 at 06:37 AM.
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Old 13th January 2020, 06:40 AM   #11
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Old 13th January 2020, 06:59 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by erlando View Post
How would your phone know if you were driving or just a passenger? Or on a bus or train?
It doesn't. It is a "do not disturb" setting that you can either manually switch on and off or have it so the phone attempts to detect when you are driving and it automatically engages the mode.
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Old 13th January 2020, 07:07 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
It doesn't. It is a "do not disturb" setting that you can either manually switch on and off or have it so the phone attempts to detect when you are driving and it automatically engages the mode.

Meanwhile, I spent half an hour yesterday trying to figure out why my phone was sending my calls directly to voicemail. Worse, there was no record of missed calls or voicemails for the calls I made to my own phone. Googled it and found discussion groups that said to toggle the "do not disturb" setting on and off. I didn't have a setting like that, but I had an airplane mode. I turned it on and then off - and my calls now actually ring.

No idea where my phone got the notion to just not alert me to calls.
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Old 13th January 2020, 07:13 AM   #14
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Coming at this from another angle I do think, sooner or later, we'll see a Constitutional (or at the very least some sort of broad legal) challenge on any and all age restrictions that will attempt (to what degree it will be successful is of course largely the point) to define a definitive "You are an adult at this point" age and null/void all the others.

Yes the fact that 17/18 year old can join the military but not buy a beer or a cigar is a goddamn disgrace.
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Old 13th January 2020, 07:18 AM   #15
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The one time I've really wanted to ban cell phones has been while working in high schools. Just as with adults they're an addiction. Maybe the solution is to use them as a platform for lessons. But in the meantime they're a distraction. You can have strict policies but the temptation is always there.

A teacher got in trouble for jamming signals - it turned out to be illegal -but I totally got where he was coming from.
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Old 13th January 2020, 07:54 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Loss Leader View Post
Meanwhile, I spent half an hour yesterday trying to figure out why my phone was sending my calls directly to voicemail. Worse, there was no record of missed calls or voicemails for the calls I made to my own phone. Googled it and found discussion groups that said to toggle the "do not disturb" setting on and off. I didn't have a setting like that, but I had an airplane mode. I turned it on and then off - and my calls now actually ring.

No idea where my phone got the notion to just not alert me to calls.
Airplane mode turns off all transmissions so it wouldn't receive calls or data while active. How would it know you got a call when it isn't listening to your service?
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Old 13th January 2020, 08:07 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by Ranb View Post
Based on the attitudes of people like this sponsor, it is only a matter of time before the age of majority or the voting age is raised to 21.
I think you're reading that completely backwards. He doesn't want to introduce an age limit for phones, he wants to lower (or get rid of) the age limit for guns.
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Old 13th January 2020, 08:09 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim View Post
I think you're reading that completely backwards. He doesn't want to introduce an age limit for phones, he wants to lower (or get rid of) the age limit for guns.
Perhaps. But a quick look at the bills he is sponsoring does not indicate anything like that yet. He is pro-gun though.
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Old 13th January 2020, 08:11 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Ranb View Post
Based on the attitudes of people like this sponsor, it is only a matter of time before the age of majority or the voting age is raised to 21.
Ah... no.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twenty...s_Constitution
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Old 13th January 2020, 08:22 AM   #20
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It's an amendment. It can go away like the 18th did when the 21st was passed.
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Old 13th January 2020, 11:59 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Ranb View Post
Perhaps. But a quick look at the bills he is sponsoring does not indicate anything like that yet. He is pro-gun though.
A quick look at the article you posted in the OP clearly indicates that, though. Including, but not limited to, the fact that the he deliberately modelled it on the existing gun laws.
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Old 13th January 2020, 01:05 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
Airplane mode turns off all transmissions so it wouldn't receive calls or data while active. How would it know you got a call when it isn't listening to your service?

That's the thing: airplane mode wasn't on. I fixed the problem by turning airplane mode on and then off.

As to how I know I was receiving calls that weren't going through, I was calling my cell from my house phone to find it. Instead of ringing, it went right to voicemail. I found my phone on my own, tried it again with my cell in my lap and it didn't ring or register any activity. And once I did get it to reconnect to the network, it didn't find my calls or register anything about them or the voicemail messages I left for myself.
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Old 13th January 2020, 01:09 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
You can't know if they're an idiot unless you see what clues they missed.
Nah...just doing a crossword while driving is all the evidence needed.
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Old 13th January 2020, 01:16 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Loss Leader View Post
That's the thing: airplane mode wasn't on. I fixed the problem by turning airplane mode on and then off.

As to how I know I was receiving calls that weren't going through, I was calling my cell from my house phone to find it. Instead of ringing, it went right to voicemail. I found my phone on my own, tried it again with my cell in my lap and it didn't ring or register any activity. And once I did get it to reconnect to the network, it didn't find my calls or register anything about them or the voicemail messages I left for myself.
OK, then. I am aware, though I have not made use of it, that my provider allows certain actions independent of the handset. For example, I could set my connection to forward to VM and it matters not a whit what the phone says thereafter.

Could it be one of those obscure settings?
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Old 13th January 2020, 01:16 PM   #25
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stupid premise
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Old 13th January 2020, 01:19 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Minoosh View Post
The one time I've really wanted to ban cell phones has been while working in high schools. Just as with adults they're an addiction. Maybe the solution is to use them as a platform for lessons. But in the meantime they're a distraction. You can have strict policies but the temptation is always there.

A teacher got in trouble for jamming signals - it turned out to be illegal -but I totally got where he was coming from.
I think that they should ban the whole huge center console display thing in most modern cars. Every time I see someone driving erratically they are always looking at the display to see where they are even though they already know(IMO) because it's sooo coool!
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Old 13th January 2020, 01:23 PM   #27
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That point: In Vermont, it's illegal for anyone under 21 to buy a firearm. Rodgers suggested that the same age restrictions should apply to cellphone use.
Does he really not understand the difference between "buy" and "use"?

My kids are out of high school and still haven't bought a single cell phone themselves. But use? Oh, they can use.
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Old 13th January 2020, 01:28 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by Loss Leader View Post
That's the thing: airplane mode wasn't on. I fixed the problem by turning airplane mode on and then off.
It likely wasn't finding a signal. Sometimes switching it in and out of airplane mode will initiate the phone actually searching for a signal. Happened to us yesterday when we were out in the country and only had "voice-only" service. Once we got closer to the highway I asked my wife to turn on and off Airplane mode and it switched over to LTE with four bars. The signal was there, the phone just wasn't looking for it.

But be careful, if you leave it in Airplane mode the ensuing "stop calling me Shirley" and "bad day to quit sniffing glue" jokes can lead to marital stress.
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Old 13th January 2020, 01:34 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Ranb View Post
As far as I know, a person can join the military in the USA while still 17, but can't deploy overseas until they are 18.
In the US, joining the military at 17 requires parental consent.

I don't believe it is true that the minimum age for overseas deployment is 18 in the US. It is included in the description for New Zealand:

Quote:
17 years of age for voluntary military service; soldiers cannot be deployed until the age of 18; no conscription (2019)
US:
Quote:
18 years of age (17 years of age with parental consent) for male and female voluntary service; no conscription; maximum enlistment age 34 (Army), 39 (Air Force), 39 (Navy), 28 (Marines), 31 (Coast Guard); 8-year service obligation, including 2-5 years active duty (Army), 2 years active (Navy), 4 years active (Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard); all military occupations and positions open to women (2019)
https://www.cia.gov/library/publicat...ields/333.html
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Old 13th January 2020, 01:56 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Venom View Post
I'm kind of amused by American standards.

You'd trust a 15 year old with a 2,000 lb heavy machine but get queasy when they buy condoms?
Trust 17 year olds to serve your country overseas but won't let them drink fermented malt barley.

I think this 21+ cell phone nonsense is out of line.
Agree with you about the condoms, but I think the alcohol (and now tobacco) age is fine where it is. Some days, I think it should be 40. I wouldn't mind them bumping up the age for military enlistment to 21, either. (Which will never happen, of course, I'm just giving my unpopular view.)

The cell phone thing is obviously silly. I'd never support that, even if the idiot proposing it were serious. Cell phones are not directly deadly in the way that war, tobacco, and alcohol are. You have to draw a few connections to make them deadly. They're deadly to people's attention spans, I suppose.
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Old 13th January 2020, 02:48 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by abaddon View Post
OK, then. I am aware, though I have not made use of it, that my provider allows certain actions independent of the handset. For example, I could set my connection to forward to VM and it matters not a whit what the phone says thereafter.

Could it be one of those obscure settings?

Who knows? Fixing it by turning airplane mode on and off leads me to believe it was a glitch.
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Old 13th January 2020, 02:54 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by erlando View Post
How would your phone know if you were driving or just a passenger? Or on a bus or train?
As far as I know, my phone has no clue whether I'm I'm driving or just a passenger, until I tell it that I'm a passenger.

That's fine. It's annoying, potentially, for people on public transit, but it's far better than people chatting and then crashing their cars. And I say that as a guy that used the subway starting when I was 9.
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Old 13th January 2020, 03:13 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by erlando View Post
How would your phone know if you were driving or just a passenger? Or on a bus or train?
The train vs car/bus is easy - if the GPS puts you on train tracks you have more serious problems than driver distraction.

Car or bus driver vs passenger: harder. Not sure how current tech can distinguish.
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Old 13th January 2020, 03:16 PM   #34
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Although this is an interesting discussion I am convinced the Vermont senator was trying to take a swipe at gun-control laws by employing cell phone use as an analogy. Apparently he did it so poorly that people have bought into him truly intending a cell phone control law.
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Old 13th January 2020, 10:56 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by Mumbles View Post
As far as I know, my phone has no clue whether I'm I'm driving or just a passenger, until I tell it that I'm a passenger.

That's fine. It's annoying, potentially, for people on public transit, but it's far better than people chatting and then crashing their cars. And I say that as a guy that used the subway starting when I was 9.
You would have to disable the phone almost completely. There are several voip apps out there and countless chat apps. So any kind of signal would have to be disabled. Byebye Google Maps, Uber, Waze etc etc.

It is a pretty draconian measure to take affecting a lot of innocent users so unless people are literally dying left and right due to cell phone usage in cars you might want to dial it down.

This link says 14% of traffic fatalities in 2017 were due to cell phone usage. It also says that double that was due to drunk driving.
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Old 14th January 2020, 04:05 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by Giordano View Post
Although this is an interesting discussion I am convinced the Vermont senator was trying to take a swipe at gun-control laws by employing cell phone use as an analogy. Apparently he did it so poorly that people have bought into him truly intending a cell phone control law.
Yes his argument is that guns don't kill people, phones do.
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Old 14th January 2020, 07:18 AM   #37
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Yes the fact that 17/18 year old can join the military but not buy a beer or a cigar is a goddamn disgrace.
I think it depends heavily on whether or not there's any empirical justification for age limits, although the existence of seemingly contradictory age limits are by themselves a sign that the limits are arbitrary.

Notionally there's no reason for why someone who is deemed mature enough to apply to join the military, by virtue of their age, should be presumed to be mature enough to drink alcoholic beverages. It doesn't negate the (supposed) greater than tolerable harm that alcohol has on the brains of young adults.

A more reasonable example of how arbitrary these kind of age limits are would be something like, how 17/18 year olds are trained to kill people, and advance in trenches filled blood and guts up to their ankles, but are not allowed to see the most "graphic" and explicit movies.
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Old 14th January 2020, 07:24 AM   #38
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
Yes his argument is that guns don't kill people, phones do.
Via an app? I've searched the Google Play store but I'm not finding anything I could download to turn my phone into a weapon. Unless it's that Kardashian game?
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Old 14th January 2020, 07:27 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
Via an app? I've searched the Google Play store but I'm not finding anything I could download to turn my phone into a weapon. Unless it's that Kardashian game?
There was a news story that hit few years back about a hunting reserve that let you (or planned to don't remember if they actually wound up doing it) do "remote hunts" where you could remotely control a gun and webcam and shoot deer through a phone app.
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Old 14th January 2020, 07:31 AM   #40
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
There was a news story that hit few years back about a hunting reserve that let you (or planned to don't remember if they actually wound up doing it) do "remote hunts" where you could remotely control a gun and webcam and shoot deer through a phone app.
Sounds like such a set up would cost a lot of doe.
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