Lagniappe (aka Blog)


Is Big Brother or the Seattle Police Department Watching You???? 19 year old guest blogger....

Posted by Elise Buie | Oct 03, 2016 | 0 Comments

The Seattle Police Department broke at least one Seattle law when they purchased and used Geofeedia, a CIA funded Surveillance Company that tracks social media posts and can tell users what you said, where you posted from as well as find other posts in your area. Secretly buying this software violated a Seattle law that requires an outside official to be notified when the police department makes a move like this.

The Seattle surveillance ordinance may have also been broken, as it requires city council approval before obtaining surveillance equipment. The SPD has not denied breaking these laws, instead they have apologized and claim to no longer be using Geofeedia. Additionally, the SPD stated that they only ever used Geofeedia to aid in ingoing investigations and never used it to monitor the general public

The SPD acquired Geofeedia in 2014 and have been using it to monitor the city ever since. The SPD is not alone in this acquisition; other police departments in major cities such as the Philadelphia and Chicago also utilize this technology.

The department is currently catching a lot of criticism for not being transparent even though that is something that they repeatedly claim to pride themselves to be. Personally, I can see how these acts by the SPD warrant a certain amount of distrust but I don't think that this social media surveillance is as big a deal as some would make it seem.

As a general rule of thumb, you shouldn't put anything illegal or overly disruptive on social media. If your social media accounts are of interest to the police, that's on you. Everyone from potential employers to colleges and universities and now apparently the police are monitoring the public's social media content so it only seems logical to not put anything on there that is going to come back around and bite you later. Having lived in cities all around the US, I have experienced the SPD operating with a lot more respect and general decency than other departments and I don't think we should be too quick to condemn them for a small discrepancy.

About the Author

Elise Buie

Passionate, creative, problem-solving attorney who crafts solutions rather than obstacles. Elise spends significant time educating her clients on healthy communication skills. Elise also ensures that her clients make informed decisions by understanding the future emotional and financial implications of their decisions. Your family's future is our first priority. Elise teaches her clients new skills to empower them in the future as they adjust to the new family structure. While divorce ends a marriage, it is the beginning of your new, often times, more authentic life. Elise will help you begin that new life with new skills to handle any future challenges.


There are no comments for this post. Be the first and Add your Comment below.

Leave a Comment

Areas We Serve

At Elise Buie Family Law Group, PLLC, we represent clients from Seattle and Bellevue, Washington, and the surrounding region, including all of King County and the cities of Redmond, Kirkland, Bellevue, Edmonds, Issaquah, Kenmore, Kent, Federal Way, Shoreline, Des Moines, Bainbridge Island, Vashon, Auburn, Renton and Puyallup. We love working with clients from Seattle's unique, eclectic neighborhoods: West Seattle, Fremont, Ballard, Madrona, Queen Anne, Greenwood, Ravenna, Maple Leaf, Wedgewood, View Ridge, Laurelhurst, Windermere, Madison Park, Magnolia, South Lake Union, Capitol Hill, Broadmoor, Phinney Ridge, Crown Hill, Yarrow Point and Mercer Island.

Contact Us

Call us at (206) 926-9848

We'll be happy to set up an initial consult. Thank you for looking around our site. We look forward to serving you.

We welcome your email, but please understand that if you are not already a client of Elise Buie Family Law Group, PLLC, we cannot represent you until we confirm that representing you would not create a conflict of interest. Please do not include any confidential information until we verify that our office is in a position to represent you and our engagement is confirmed in writing. Prior to that time, there is no legal representation and thus no attorney-client confidentiality.

Thank you.

Elise Buie Family Law Group


Elise Buie Family Law Group PLLC
1001 Fourth Avenue, 44th Floor   Seattle, WA 98154