where the writers are
Is Surveillance Worth the Social Cost? Article in the National Post

from http://thepeepdiaries.com

Here’s a really interesting and well written article, complete with a healthy dose of snark and skepticism. The piece is called Are We All Big Brother Now? and, written by one of newspaper’s news reporters, a guy who spends plenty of time on the crime beat, it has a refreshing no nonsense look at the ideas I espouse in my book.

Here are two paragraphs from the piece:

As such, the flawed footage was typical of how CCTV plays out in major crimes, as a crucial but incomplete piece of the puzzle. But the other factors, especially the frantic speculation about the case on dedicated Facebook sites, also typify an emerging culture of democratized digital surveillance, in which security and entertainment have blurred into voyeurism, usually with the narcissistic consent of the surveilled.

This “Peep Culture,” according to Toronto author Hal Niedzviecki, is what happens when pop culture’s mass audience gains the tools to display themselves online as celebrities, with their private lives on enthusiastic display. But with time, it spreads beyond the time-passing frivolity of social networking into the most deadly serious corners of the culture.”

I liked the way this piece approached, without any sentimentality, the question of whether or not surveillance and self surveillance are worth the price that we ultimately have to pay as individuals and a society.

Are we all Big Brother now-_1243260481038


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Recently, in my (American)

Recently, in my (American) city, the local newspaper published the results of a study on the effectiveness of surveillance cameras that have been installed in certain crime-ridden areas. They found that the criminals, knowing where the cameras were located, simply went around the corner or down a few blocks to do whatever illicit activity they wanted to do. But maybe if the entire city were surveilled. . .

I have to confess I am one of the people who's creeped out by CCTV. I recognize it's here to stay, but I wish people were well enough behaved that the cameras weren't necessary.

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Bravo, Hal!

Bravo, Hal, your quote in the National Post!
Cameras were installed here in Greece before the 2004 Olympics. I'm not sure how many still exist but they aren't very popular in a democracy loving nation.
Anyway the cops here are quite good. Lot's of undercover protection which is far more effective, especially at prevention.