Today we launch the UKCrimeStats Forum !
Each week, UkCrimeStats is reaching new records in popularity (visitors, impressions and emails) and from the very start we have wanted to embrace an open, social networked approach to an area of great public and policy concern – crime. We don’t want to blow our trumpet too much – but we think we have the best designed and analytical crime website by far. But for all that, it’s definitely not enough for me to write a blog every couple of days and for our excellent Chief Data Architect, to update the data once a month and keep making the innovative improvements he always does.
We want to go 360 degrees and involve you.
What would you like to see?
What are your areas of concern?
With the forum, you can log in and engage with others.
There’s something else – our priority actually. We want you to find errors in the data and report them publicly to increase pressure to improve accuracy. I’m sorry to say, the data could be much better. And we now realise it would be far better to just to say – online – here are the errors – what are you going to do about it?
So here’s one under the Metropolitan Police Force – a duplicate Edgware neighbourhood. This was brought to our attention by a visitor to our website 10 days ago. We told the data provider but have heard nothing back and we don’t want our visitors to think we don’t care and are not doing anything about it. So if you are with the Metropolitan Police Force and know about this, please feel free to chase this up, post an answer etc.
Please understand, this is not a bad data witch hunt. Far from it. We are not tryiing to lambast this or that Police Force or Rock Kitchen Harris – the data provider to 3rd parties like ourselves. We want to work much more closely with them. It’s a huge dataset and it’s only normal that it’s not 100%. And we think it’s a truly great thing the data was released in the first place. We just want to get it right.
We have to do this because data.gov.uk don’t seem to be taking it too serously – there is no specific crime data forum and the Home Office – bless them ! – want to set up some sort of quango to look at crime data.
Well we think with your help, we can move faster than that. We will be posting up flawed data as often as we can and look forward to all your contributions. I will monitor it but as little as possible. So please keep your contributions clean and responsible. And never forget, we’re all on the same side !