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October 8, 2002
11:10 AM   Subscribe

Want to make sure Mr. Orwell was just a novelist and not a prophet? Some people have been coming up with ways to reduce your exposure to surveillance cameras. Others just put on plays for those who monitor the cameras. My favorite: zapping them with laser pointers.
posted by Irontom (19 comments total)

 
Interesting stuff, Irontom. I'm quite interested in the surveillance cam/ webcam area myself, and there's a lot of different areas to explore, which I'm going to do now.
posted by soyjoy at 11:52 AM on October 8, 2002


Hey, speaking of Orwell, has anyone had a chance to read Hitchens' new book? Based on the reviews I've read, the central thesis is that Orwell's most important works were not his novels; that in his nonfiction he was unimpeachably self-consistent and in the final analysis correct about the most important political subjects of the 20th century: imperialism, fascism, and Stalinism.
posted by mr_roboto at 11:59 AM on October 8, 2002


None of these solutions to surveillance cameras apply to cameras that you can't see.

There is no such thing as privacy. Get used to it.
posted by maniactown at 12:05 PM on October 8, 2002


Great post, Irontom.
posted by rocketman at 12:13 PM on October 8, 2002


maniactown: that's why my new mask company is going to make a billion dollars.
posted by lescour at 1:15 PM on October 8, 2002


You know, when I'm walking from the parking lot to my work building at 2:30 a.m., I kinda like having those surveillance cameras there, and I think I'd be a little less than thrilled if I was mugged (or worse), but my assailant got away because someone thought it was cute to point a laser at the camera.
posted by sageleaf at 1:15 PM on October 8, 2002


I think I'd be a little less than thrilled if I was mugged (or worse), but my assailant got away because someone thought it was cute to point a laser at the camera.
posted by sageleaf at 1:15 PM PST on October 8


Or indeed, if your assailant disabled the camera this way. With the more invasive public cameras this is a justifiable piece of civil disobedience, but there are some situations where this could be used for evil. Set and setting and all that.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 1:20 PM on October 8, 2002


Great post, but I am getting a little annoyed with all these gratuitous references to Orwell.

~chuckle~
posted by fold_and_mutilate at 1:37 PM on October 8, 2002


Am I too inferior to understand foldy's sense of humor, or does it just suck?
posted by goethean at 1:43 PM on October 8, 2002


The former, I guess. I chuckled in recognition, because when I saw the word "Orwell" I scrolled past this post before stopping and reading it. Now, as for that annoying habit of putting the tilde around "chuckle" and "wink," well, foldy, I can't quite follow you that far.
posted by soyjoy at 1:46 PM on October 8, 2002


Fascinating subject and some of the better links I've seen lately. I've been thinking about putting together a portable camera/transmitter to go on one of my livestock guardian dogs but now I suppose the coyotes will be lining up at radio shack for laser pointers. Damn!
posted by Mack Twain at 4:37 PM on October 8, 2002


f&m knows perfectly well there's a difference between a general discussion, and his gratuitous personal insults.
posted by dhartung at 4:55 PM on October 8, 2002


f&m knows perfectly well there's a difference between a general discussion, and his gratuitous personal insults.

I think dhartung knows perfectly well that there's no difference between Orwellian references supporting his viewpoint, and those not supporting his viewpoint.
posted by fold_and_mutilate at 5:12 PM on October 8, 2002


I'd be a little less than thrilled if I was mugged (or worse), but my assailant got away because someone thought it was cute to point a laser at the camera.
I admit this is a cynical thought, but who says that camera is there to protect you? Most cameras are protecting property from vandalism or monitoring traffic lights.
posted by elwoodwiles at 5:31 PM on October 8, 2002


I read today that the police took some pictures from an intersection camera (meant to catch light-runners) to help in catching the DC sniper. So you can bet if it leads to an arrest there will be a call for us to be on video all the time.
It's amazing that they don't have pix of this guy already.
posted by Slagman at 5:40 PM on October 8, 2002


Slagman: they will only get a picture if the suspect ran the red light. I'm guessing here, but I bet he didn't. It's off subject but the sniper is too efficient in his methods - I'm guessing he's somebody with a shit-load of military training.
posted by elwoodwiles at 5:50 PM on October 8, 2002


I just got one of those laser pointers as a toy for my cat. To my chagrin, it didn't take her long to put dot and pointer together. (I tried to be slick but the click when the button was pressed tipped her off.) She still chases it--only now she doesn't go so nutso. Nice to know of another use for it now that the novelty's worn off.
posted by y2karl at 12:50 AM on October 9, 2002


sageleaf -

So, when I'm sitting in divorce court watching video of myself headed out to the car after a late night rendezvous with my non-spousal significant other, I should thank you for your willingness for all us to be captured on tape all the time that we are not inside our private residences?
posted by Irontom at 9:26 AM on October 9, 2002


Irontom good info, and how you shared it, thanks. Might I add your last comment, local commentary around Dallas, Tx says because of that problem you might be in a car with someone other than you spouse and because of privacy they can not install cameras for giving a ticket, yet they are changing the laws.

Round here for red light runners, the cities use a separate beacon lamp mounted on the top of the signal pole. The system is to determine if you blew through the red from a far. This way the cop can be down the road from the light signal so he too can be where you are @ now writing up the ticket after you blew it.

PS, nothing worse I think than having a cop on the side walk flagging you down to sign a ticket, something I've yet to see for me.
posted by thomcatspike at 12:00 PM on October 9, 2002


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