Reporters on the Job

Under a Watchful Eye: Correspondent Mark Rice-Oxley knows that Britain is already a country with plenty of surveillance. "I don't think I could drive 100 yards from my house [in Kingston] without appearing on camera."

In fact, Mark says he's heard it reported that the average commuter traveling to London and back from the suburbs would be captured by government and private surveillance cameras about 300 times.

A new national traffic surveillance system will soon be able to identify cars and cross-check key databases to see if the car has been stolen or the car owner owes the government taxes or fines . Mark wonders if it might be used to gather evidence of speeding. "If I'm photographed going out of my home at 8 a.m. and my car is photographed in Bristol at 10 a.m., someone could calculate that I was going 90 m.p.h. hour, which is a crime."

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Notes From the Fish Market: On every trip to Indonesia's Aceh Province, staff writer Scott Baldauf and photographer Andy Nelson pay a visit to the fish markets. "Fishing plays a crucial part in the Acehnese economy," Scott says.

When Scott heard that the Red Cross had issued a report warning of overfishing, he was skeptical at first. "Not once did we hear complaints from fishermen at the markets about the catch falling off, or about growing competition from all those new boats."

But he says, "fishermen are eternal optimists" - especially when their catch fetches high prices on the international market. Most of the high-value fish, and particularly the shark fins that are a delicacy in Chinese cuisine, are sent out of Aceh to Jakarta, southern China, and as far away as Japan. Those don't end up in the local markets.

David Clark Scott
World editor

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