SF Examiner exposed the problem. But that was back in 2010 and hopefully the system works.
There's other anonymous text a tip lines out there like SFPD's:
The San Francisco Police Department has been touting their "Text a Tip" program where a person can text the department through a third party company, and they'll determine if its of a priority nature or forward it to a station or proper department for follow-up.
Read it for yourself:
"Through computers with Internet capability, SFPD Operations personnel will view all tips received 24/7 and evaluate each one. If the tip is of an emergency nature, personnel will forward it immediately to the Department of Emergency Management for officer dispatch. They will forward all other tips for assignment to the appropriate investigative bureau or district station. Investigative units will have an Internet-capable computer at their disposal and will be able to text back and forth with the tipster based on a randomly assigned ID number that the system, provided by Citizen Observer, Inc., supplies. The ID number is wholly confidential and is maintained in the company's server."Simple enough. Text them, and someone who monitors the system 24/7 will pass on the message.
I've tried it on a couple of occasions for some mild things like a person who was walking in the street drunk and someone suspicious walking on our block. Although, I'd only get confirmation hours or even a day after, giving me a hint something doesn't seem right.
Something Smells Funny
That suspicion of it not being monitored all the time came to light in a recent text message conversation between me and whomever was "monitoring" the tip line when I made a request for a patrol officer to visit our block to scare off some recycling thieves: