Teens Launch "Five-O": A Yelp! For Police Officers

The hot button issue for nearly a week is police brutality. Where most are taking to the streets in protest, three Georgia teens are interested in finding a solution to the issue. Later this month, Caleb Christian and his sisters, Ima and Asha Christian will be launching an app that will allow citizens to record and store data on their encounters with law enforcement.

The app is called "Five-O," and it functions much like Yelp! the community run business review site. Users look up their local law enforcement and can then see how they are rated by the community. After a Five-O user comes into contact with law enforcement, they may submit their own review and whether the encounter was a positive experience or not.

In an interview with Business Insider, Ima Christian cites her parents as inspiration for this course of action:

"They [Ima's parents] always try to reinforce that we should focus on solutions. It's important to talk about the issues, but they try to make us focus on finding solutions. That made us think why don't we create an app to help us solve this problem [police brutality]."

Five-O does more than just store reviews of your local police station, there are a couple of other features that are important to note. The app has an "Organize Your Community" feature that connects you with other activists and a "Know Your Rights" section that answers frequently asked questions when it comes to dealing with law enforcement.

The chief criticism of Five-O lies in the reliability of the reviews. Take for example Yelp. More often than not, reviews come in two forms: extremely positive, or extremely negative. If it's difficult to find level-headed reviews on content that people sought out, this issues will most likely be magnified when reviewing the officer that gave you a speeding ticket. Even if the primary function of the app doesn't end up being successful as intended, the Organize Your Community and Know Your Rights features are both great tools that could help combat police brutality in positive ways!

The most incredible aspect of this story is how talented the Christian kids are. Ima, Asha and Caleb are 16, 15, and 14 respectively. The fact that they have developed Five-O and also have laid the ground work for their "Pine Tart" app company is fascinating. Not only are these talented kids weighing in on major national issues, but they are doing so using the resources that are available to them. It goes to show you the level of influence that a young person with access to technology can have!


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