ZOMG!WTF! Kidpr0n! SuperKrime! Oh Noes!
Jesus like, whatever.
OK, on the crime planning thing, it's marginally better than a map, but not necessarily all that much, as anyone who has ever tried to case a location for possible illicit entry and then gone there will happily attest. (Urbex, in case you're wondering).
And don't forget, the pictures capture a moment in time, and things change. I hate to piss on your bonfires, but you really have to try this in order to discover just how necessary it is to actually physically go there and have a look at the location you're scoping. Maps/Earth and friends are certainly where you're going to want to start, but the fact is they don't help all that much. Those of you with a less larcenous set of hobbies and interests ate just going to have to take my word for it.
A concrete example : Sometime last year finding myself with time on my hands, I was idly scanning google earth for likely targets for exploration and came across what I was able to identify as an abandoned munitions dump in the nearby countryside (still MOD land). I spent some time familiarising myself with the location and it's surroundings, identified possible ingress and egress and so on, packed a bag and set off on my trusty two wheeled companion. When I got there (after having accidentally ridden down several flights of steps which were not identified on the maps or visible from the sky, it turned out that rather than being as isolated as it appeared, it was at that moment in time overlooked by, in no particular order, a brand new housing estate and concomitant posse of navvies, a busy tractor driving school, and four nuns in an SUV. And all the fences had been patched. And it was on fire*. None of which was readily apparent from Google earth.
So all in all, the desk based recon was pretty much a waste of time, and in fact this is far from a unique episode in my own personal experience. There's no substitute for direct recon. Period.
And as for the kidpron, what utter bollocks! The only way that GSV could realistically help some stalking pedo to track down targets is if all children stand outside in one place at all times, and apart from that, by far the majority of kiddie fiddling is performed in house, as it were, rather than being the purview of some random outsourced "predator".
*Seriously. Is it just me that has days like that ?