‘Cameras everywhere!’ And why I honestly don’t care

I’m not against cameras everywhere I look. I don’t hate the idea of there being a camera with special purposes in street lights, or wherever else (less cops needing to be dealt with). Their intentions are plausibly understandable (at least how we perceive their intentions). My problem is with its real usage, and by whom. When Prime Minister David Cameron used his cameras to spy on the pissed off citizens he fucked over, then I had a big problem with that. Same goes with Obama.

But do any of us object to turning the cameras on politicians, or on the cops? I would say neither of them particularly enjoy the idea of cameras being on them – especially the cops! Though, it’s our means of defense – that is one particular tool at least. Do any of us object to using cameras in seeing who’s speeding and who isn’t? Surely one would rather get a ticket in the mail than having to deal with asshole cops, especially when you’re really in a hurry to work or somewhere else!

Surely we don’t object to personal digital cameras (video or not), or our webcams, or even the IP cameras set up in large stores to ensure no one is stealing. None of us are truly against the increase of cameras, I don’t believe. Our objections aren’t in the cameras themselves, but of how they’re being used, and by whom.

Fact of the matter is this: regulations are called for in any normal society. The idea of wanting privacy in public society is, quite frankly, as delusional as privacy in a technological world.

The future is becoming exponentially technological, and I for one refuse in going back the way it was; I refuse adhering to unabomber idealism. My privacy isn’t a concern to me. Nor do I truly believe it’s a real concern to anybody else as well.

When we cry “big brother”, we aren’t bashing the cameras, nor their location. We’re bashing big brother. Nothing more, nothing less. Big brother isn’t the cameras. It isn’t their location. It’s how the cameras are being used, and by whom.

When I walk down the street, I expect my privacy being diminished. I expect that somewhere, by someone, I am in someone’s camera; in someone’s video shot; a blurred figure in a portrait’s background; a slight presence in every street corner’s camera and every store’s IP camera.

I’m actually excited in the idea that I can type a simple program on Google and then be able to view cameras around the world. The same of someone seeing me walk down a crowded street. Is my privacy being violated? Technically. But do I care? Why should I? What do I have to hide in public? Nothing!

In the end, it still boils down to the question of capitalism or socialism. It no longer revolves around the question of whether you want privacy or not, but by whom you want violating your privacy, and for what purposes.

The age of individual privacy has slowly been expropriating, just as capitalism has. We no longer set ourselves to the ideal of ensuring individual rights, but the right of the community. Do we offer stone-age privacy and an individual’s right to do whatever, whenever, or do we start offering the community their right to a job, a home, food, energy, healthcare, education, etc.?

If you’re with the former, then you are my enemy. If you’re with the latter, then you are my comrade.

To get a real good understanding at just how many cameras there really are in the world of today, then check out Singularity Hub’s awesome picture graph, which a copy of it is provided below:


5 Comments Add yours

  1. Mark Waser says:

    Well said!

  2. willie says:

    So you don’t mind cablebox cameras or cell phone reverse cameras either. Ok then your an exhibitionist I guess.

    1. BJ Murphy says:

      Well let’s actually consider the examples you’ve given.

      The first one being a cable box camera. According to certain tech-savvy articles, these type of cameras – which are being considered by companies like Intel – are to be used for the purpose of analyzing who is watching the TV and what shows they’re watching in particular. The data would then be collected and extrapolated to help provide a more personalized list of shows, movies, etc. to which would best suit that of each individual.

      Personally, I see nothing wrong with this, so long that is the intent of the camera’s usage. Really, I see no serious difference between that and the upcoming Kinect 2, which is a camera that’ll analyze your movements, muscle and joint pressure, heart rate, etc. while you’re playing video games.

      As for cell phone reverse cameras, isn’t this already technically achievable via Skype? Apps such as those do, indeed, provide the probability of spying by agencies like the NSA – as we’re all becoming acquainted with here recently – but then of what purpose would this camera attain? What purpose would any agency have in monitoring someone via their phone for 24 hours of the day? And even if they were – which I seriously doubt – what exactly would I have to hide if I wasn’t, in fact, a terrorist?

      I honestly see absolutely nothing to fear of, nor to particularly care over, regarding the increase of cameras. The intent of their usage matters most, and the probabilities of their being used for said intent, not because they’re cameras in general. This type of paranoia is unnecessary.

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