Following on from the Google Street View roll-out, two issues have popped up – again;
- People’s privacy on the streets vis-a-vis a commercial organisation like Google
- People’s privacy on the streets vis-a-vis government organisations like local councils
For the first, the self-appointed guardian “Privacy International” have made an official appeal to the Information Commissioner’s Office to shut down the service. My view is that when you are in a public place, you should behave in a right and proper manner. It’s your responsibility. If you behave badly, whose fault is it – yours!
Having a camera photograph you in a fuzzy, non-targeted way is no different to having the hundreds of people who see you as passers-by as you walk down the street. If you are embarrassed by the photo the surely, you’d be embarrassed by the gaze of your fellows?
So I’m afraid I’m with Google on this one. Obviously there are exceptions, and Google will react very fast, but as Google said:
“The truth is that this is an empty and entirely predictable publicity stunt by an organisation that is far from impartial when it comes to the issue of Google and privacy” – said a spokesperson. And that’s it – Privacy International have some very peculiar ideas when it comes to Phorm, for instance.
For the second issue, we find that since 2000, the number of organisations allowed to view detailed CCTV tracking videos and photos, intercept phone calls and emails etc, has ballooned from nine to nearly 800!!! This is the dreadful RIPA and it’s ramped up fellow fiends against freedom, the imprisonment without trial laws etc. that we are now accustomed to… …and which I predict in a few years will make this land no longer fit for heroes to live in.
We now find that any Tom,Dick or Harry council clerk with an axe to grind can tap your phone, get you sacked or worse without even leaving their office. Averaged out across the country, there are about eight such fellows with these rights in each council.
Now remember that these eight will have partners and friends. Now recall that we have “60,000 individuals trained in ‘terror’ prevention” (vigilantes) and you can see how an expanding miasma of corruption and consequent nepotistic clubmanship could spread across the land, all helped with easy spying technology.
It’s already started. Read the links below.
This is wholly different to having a street snapshot at one moment in time, which is what Google Street View is. Don’t get confused by the people who mush all aspects of photography and video into one thing – they’re not. It’s how you do it and how they are used.
Reading and Links:
- Extent of council spying revealed
- Councils launch 20,000 spying missions on fairy lights thieves and illegal crab sellers
- How easy is it to vandalise Street View?
- Privacy group calls for Street View shut down
- Major websites urged to boycott Phorm
- Curtain Road Puker
- Street View Gets the Finger in Newcastle