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Anti Teen Weaponry is a $1,500 ringtone

04.25.2008 @ 12:48 PM in Lifestream

  • CNN - A wall-mounted gadget designed to drive away loiterers with a shrill, piercing noise audible only to teens and young adults is infuriating civil liberties groups and tormenting young people after being introduced into the United States. The Mosquito, which targets loiterers, projects a shrill noise audible only to teens and young adults. Almost 1,000 units of the device, called the Mosquito, have been sold in the United States and Canada after the product debuted last year, according to Daniel Santell, the North America importer of the device sold under the company name Kids Be Gone. The high-frequency sound has been likened to fingernails dragged across a chalkboard or a pesky mosquito buzzing in your ear. It can be heard by most people in their teens and early 20s who still have sensitive hair cells in their inner ears. Whether you can hear the noise depends on how much your hearing has deteriorated: How loud you blast your iPod, for example, could affect your ability to detect it.
The device costs $1,500 to install, but some cities are claiming that it is an unnecessary and cruel form of a deterrent. A device like this has no regulation, and others are afraid the device would be mismanaged in the hands of private owners. However, the shrill noise is nothing new, most commonly used as a free stealth ringtone called the "mosquito." listen to a sample of it below. Can't hear it? that must mean you're old. [audio:]