Threat Level has a link to a story in the SF Chronicle about Chicago’s award-winning surveillance technology. I admit, there were times, waiting for the bus on a stretch of Garfield Boulevard late at night, I was happy to see the blue light of a CPD surveillance camera. But one person interviewed posed the big question:
“Would you rather be safe, or would you rather be private?” asked Eric Reynolds, 44, who on a recent Saturday was directing a crew fixing the brick exterior of a house on North Homan Avenue in Chicago…
Chicago has bigger plans. Mayor Richard Daley said recently that the city will have cameras on “almost every block” by 2016, when the city hopes to host the Summer Olympics.
Hmm, just like China. I’m not sure landing the Olympics is a good idea. And when it comes to chosing between “safe” and “private” – can I have a helping of both, please?
The irony is, it goes both ways. Police are filmed by citizens not always showing themselves at their finest moments. Footage captured by a student of another student being repeatedly tasered by campus cops has had over a million hits on YouTube and prompted a thorough if rather late report on the incident.
Just one more conundrum to ponder in the digital age… one that you can keep up with through the Electronic Frontier Foundation if you’re so inclined.