[extropy-chat] Wearable Camera Etiquette

Samantha Atkins samantha at objectent.com
Thu Apr 15 18:36:33 UTC 2004

On Apr 14, 2004, at 7:50 PM, Harvey Newstrom wrote:
>>> - don't record while using the phone where you can break wiretapping 
>>> laws
>> We need to get to a society quickly where it is assumed that 
>> everything witnessed by any person was "remembered" in full fidelity 
>> and is fully shareable with others.   Anything less than this limits 
>> all of us.
> This sounds good to some people, but I am sure there are other people 
> who do not desire this.  We need a society that allows both choices to 
> coexist with each other.  I don't think people fear other people's 
> technology as much as they fear it will impose itself on people who 
> don't want it.

Should some people's desire to limit the capabilities of other people 
to what they are comfortable with be honored?   I don't see why or how 
doing so could be compatible with freedom to enhance one's own life and 

>>> - don't record near computers in use where you can record people's 
>>> keystrokes or passwords
>> What passwords?  "Talk to the hand!"
> Even if passwords go away, there will be some privacy desires by some 
> people.

Sure.  There are all kinds of desires by all kinds of people.  But only 
some small subset of those is rational and enforceable in a rational 
free society.   Now, I do see that there are ample rational reasons to 
be able to act anonymously.   There needs to be some room for that.   I 
am not sure how to balance this equation.

>>> - don't record anybody if you plan to publish your recording and you 
>>> don't have contracts for these people to appear in your video
>> See above answer.
> This is more difficult.  Do we really want to tell people not to 
> venture out of their homes if they don't want to be recorded and 
> published?  Or if people have a wardrobe malfunction just walking down 
> the street, do other people have a natural "right" to record it and 
> publish it on the Internet?  Even where privacy is not guaranteed or 
> required, there still might be standard politeness that requires that 
> one not stare/record/publish at people.

Yes, there will be some new rules of etiquette that evolve.

>>> - don't record anybody talking if you aren't part of the 
>>> conversation, because microphones can pick up speech beyond your 
>>> hearing range, where you can "bug" people who think they are having 
>>> a private conversation
>> Are we then to limit human enhanced senses?   A private conversation 
>> should be encrypted not dependent on limiting the abilities of 
>> others.
> But the other extreme is just as bad.  We can't tell people that they 
> can't have any private communications out of a sealed security vault.  
> This would end going out to dinner on a date if people start recording 
> other people's conversations remotely and publishing them on reality 
> TV.  I am sure restaurants will ban this technology like many ban 
> cellphones when they started disturbing other people.

Good point.  Although in fact people already have far less privacy than 
they believe they have.  In the US the government is pushing hard to 
roll back privacy further although only government employees get full 
access.   Part of the etiquette and balance probably needs to be 
personal controls over how much of one's identity/location/information 
is revealed in what situations.   There must be some room for 
speaking/acting off the record or totalitarianism is a likely result.

> If we stress that we have a "right" to record people at a distance 
> just because our technology has improved, what is to keep them from 
> claiming the "right" to see under you clothes, or into your brain, or 
> to block your senses when you look in their direction?  Do we really 
> want personal technology wars between strangers on the street?  I 
> think people will retain basic rules of etiquette and politeness, and 
> will rebel when they are pushed too far.
>>> - don't record near bridges, airports, train stations, bus stations, 
>>> tall buildings, banks or other possible terrorist or criminal 
>>> targets, or the feds might think you are casing the location for 
>>> future attacks
>> Screw the Feds and their outrageous limitations on the people under 
>> the pretense of "fighting terrorism".
> Agreed that they are going to far.  I am just pointing out the obvious 
> reactions to people who assert their right to record everything they 
> want.  Private people, corporations, and governments are going to 
> object to this attitude.  This was the same claim made by hackers who 
> said they had this ability to see the data, and if they weren't 
> prevented, it was fair game.  The social and political evolutions has 
> turned out that hackers are considered criminals and terrorists.  I 
> suspect a similar reaction to enhanced humans recording information 
> that other humans don't want them to record.

Obligatory objection to using "hackers" in this sense inserted here.  
But I take your point.   We need to enable people to augment their 
abilities AND enable people to have some level of privacy and control 
over what is done with their information trail.

- samantha

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