Like Me? Follow Me.
I have just read a news article that a company plans to launch a service called Internet Eyes that will stream live CCTV footage. If you spot a crime happening on the feed, you can send a screen grab to the owner of the shop. The pull for the public is there will be a reward of £1000 per month for the user who spots the most crimes.
Although quite clearly a good deterrent for petty crime such as shoplifting and vandalism, victimisation is a real danger through wrongful allegation - the site intends to have a gallery of criminals, which sounds, to me, like a gallery of alleged criminals and which, if for anyone who happens to be unlucky enough to be in the screen grab, will potentially violate the privacy of the victim of the crime or the innocent passerby.
What about the privacy of the person who may be caught, perhaps, buying
a surprise for a loved one who then happen to see the image? I want to know who is going
to protect the person who becomes an internet star overnight because they
tripped and fell and someone has decided to post the video onto YouTube or Flickr? What about the poor chap who's had a wardrobe
malfunction of some kind and they become a laughing stock when the image is leaked onto a
forum or social media site?
At the end of the day, privacy seems to count for nothing! Everything we do is being monitored – the websites we visit, the places we shop, what we buy, even what we watch in our own homes is being recorded! We need to draw the line somewhere and making this information public is where it should stop.