Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Terrorism and Technology

An interesting article on technology, terrorism, and the future.,2763,1542338,00.html#article_continue


Blogger Robert said...

I can see why people have an instinctive negative reaction to the idea of being videotaped everywhere they go in public--I share it--but I wonder whether it's really that big a deal from the stand point of civil libertarianism, assuming that most of the CCTV cameras are both a) owned/operated by private individuals or companies and b) only videotaping public areas or private areas owned by the operator of the camera.

It doesn't seem all that different from the fact that when you're out in public, there's always a chance that a flesh-and-blood human is watching you.

On the importance of eyes on the street to public safety, see the first few chapters of Jane Jacobs's marvelous book from the 1960s, Death and Life of Great American Cities.

Privately owned surveillance cameras can potentially magnify the effect of flesh-and-blood eyes on the street, especially as the nature of urban living changes, without *necessarily* leading to Big Brother concerns.

This isn't to say I'm unconcerned about the trend. there are several reasons to be worried, but I think there's a lot of jumping to conclusions about it all.

5:09 AM  

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