lsayre wrote:Another popular use for them is to assess the potential for just who might be running a small business out of their home in an area where such is not permitted due to zoning restrictions. The ultimate name of the game for smart meters is control.
The ultimate name of the game for PCs, 25 years ago, was a conspiracy of business owners to install word processing software and thereby reduce the number of typists they had to pay. Or not -- maybe computers were just a better idea all around.
The conspiracy theory for smart meters implies that power company management sat down and said, "How can we spy on our customers and sell the information to law enforcement?" Somehow I don't think that is an essential profit-making goal in electric utilities' business plans. Maybe smart meters are just a better idea all around.
Even from the perspective of law enforcement agencies, doing an illegal blanket survey of utility records would turn up so many false positives they would be swamped with "leads" that lead nowhere. It is an unfortunate fact of modern life, that most of us leave a detailed electronic record of what we do. Maybe there should be laws requiring such records to be erased after a few months, and making them inadmissible in court.