Tracking baby Jesus
Ah, a fine Christmas fable. I'm a sucker for this kind of thing. While the TV news version of the story might be worthless (another mystery "security company") the full version put out by the AP is quite sweet and well reported. Just goes to show that there is, indeed, value in original reporting. Just look at this lede (that's a journalism term): When Baby Jesus disappeared last year from a Nativity scene on the lawn of the Wellington, Fla., community center, village officials didn't follow a star to locate him. A GPS device mounted inside the life-size ceramic figurine led sheriff's deputies to a nearby apartment, where it was found face down on the carpet. An 18-year-old woman was arrested in the theft. That's some good writing, that is. The story goes on to detail the frequent theft of the baby Jesus, and what churches are doing about it. And then there's the security company (BrickHouse Security, an online straight-to-consumer distributor, to be exact), that had the smarts to make a great PR decision: Sensing opportunity in that kind of success story, New York-based BrickHouse Security is offering up to 200 nonprofit religious institutions a free month's use of security cameras and LightningGPS products it distributes. Chief executive officer Todd Morris said the idea was born after a few churches asked about one-month rentals instead of longer contracts that are the norm. It doesn't look like they're using central station monitoring, just devices that can be accessed via web browser. Doesn't mean you can't steal their idea, though, and offer a more robust solution to holiday theft.