• Cole Patterson

The end of privacy: We are always being watched

In today’s world, the demand for more security and surveillance is rapidly increasing. In almost every aspect of life, privacy seems to be fading to only a faint memory.

Going to amusement parks, festivals, and other fun places and events is always an exciting time. Happiness, joy, and fun use to be the first words that come to mind for many people before visiting these places. The sad thing is, fear is now a huge factor that is commonly dealt with among many when visiting these places and events.

When visiting Ohio’s Cedar Point, going through large metal detectors and many other security measures are now a required task. Simple, fun things in life are turning into more of a hassle than a gratification.

Basic stables of entertainment such as visiting a movie theater are no longer as straightforward as they once were. Patrons are bombarded with huge security measures such as bag policies and rules that prevent dressing up.

With all these terrible things that happen commonly in today’s world, huge steps have been taken in an attempt to protect fellow Americans. Video cameras and closed circuit television (CCTV) are becoming a common feature in American life.

CCTV Is a closed-circuit television system in which signals are not publicly distributed but are monitored, usually for surveillance and security purposes.

Cameras are everywhere one goes. Sometimes obvious, sometimes hidden. There are very few places your not being watched. These cameras are everywhere, including at schools, entertainment venues, and almost all public places. They sometimes are intended to be in public view, and sometimes are purposely hidden.

Although the cameras are supposed to be for good intentions, this doesn't mean nothing bad can’t happen. There have been a large variety of cases in which “bad apples” have misused this powerful yet dangerous security feature.

In 1997, a top ranking Washington D.C. official was caught using police databases to gather information on patrons of a local gay club. He looked up the license plate numbers of cars parked at the club, and after some research, he attempted to blackmail them. It all goes back to who is watching and monitoring these cameras. There is a lot of trust involved in choosing these people, and there will always be some bad occurrences.

​The fear of CCTV has not deterred terrorists however. Surveillance cameras unfortunately sometimes attract suicide attackers, as the television coverage they endure may be a huge attraction. A study by the University of Alabama showed that terrorist attacks by muslims received 357% more press attention.

Although the goal of CCTV is to help protect the nation’s citizens, the negatives outweigh the positives in a lot of situations.

There have been a lot of cases where employees have objected to being under constant surveillance without their permission, and cited “Invasion of privacy” as the Issue. Few have also taken legal action.

In a lot of cases, installing all these cameras and surveillance devices is simply not worth the money. Alternative security systems have proven to be more effective, while being cheaper. A system of twenty city-centre cameras cost the equivalent of thirty full time police, according to KDIS Online.

With plummeting public support and rising costs, along with a large increase in alternative security systems, the future of CCTV security is truly uncertain.

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