Thousands log on to watch police
Thousands of people have viewed a police force's live video streaming of its work on the internet, in what is believed to be a world first.
The behind-the-scenes look at life at Sussex Police attracted nearly 18,000 views in the first few hours and more than 500 comments and questions were posted.
Using mobile phones, laptops and a free, live video streaming application, the "day in the life" account of the force's activities has been heralded as the first of its kind.
As part of the day-long Sussex Police People: Live initiative, the public were able to join in with web chats and on Twitter using the hashtag #SPPlive.
The public have been taken on an online tour of the police helicopter, viewed the Specialist Search Team diving at Shoreham Harbour and witnessed scenes of crime officer Chris Gee examining a car in Brighton.
A series of officers and staff have also given an account of their daily duties, and viewers posted comments on a live webchat feed below the live footage.
The quality of the images varied and issues were experienced with sound and the webchat facility at times, with one commentator posting: "It's 2011 and this is the best quality video." Others were more complementary about the force's digital approach.
Some live streams were muted for legal reasons but Sussex Police broadly aimed to broadcast the challenges its officers and staff face on a daily basis.
Chief Constable Martin Richards said the project aimed to "lift the lid on policing in 2011" at a time when questions were being asked about transparency of the police.
Greater Manchester Police broke new ground last year by using Twitter to post details of every incident reported over a 24-hour period. However, Sussex Police's project is understood to be the first time any force in the world has broadcast live video streaming of its work.