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UAV Surveillance on Citizens

MalaysianShrewMalaysianShrew Registered User
edited May 2007 in Debate and/or Discourse
So wikinews pointed me towards this article in the Guardian. Note that it's an AP article.

British Police Test Eye in the Sky Drone


So the Bobbies are testing out a remote control helicopter armed with high resolution cameras to monitor "criminals". The quote in the entirely too short article quotes, "'It is a cost-effective way to deal with situations where you have to deploy a lot of officers,' said Louise Burton, spokeswoman for Merseyside Police Force."

This surprised me. I know that the UK has cameras pretty much everywhere that can be construed as "public space" however this makes me very uneasy. I suppose it is cheaper than a helicopter, but that just means it will be used more than helicopters are currently. I don't know that it will have much actual utility, but the fact that the nation will know that there are hovering cameras potentially anywhere will have a huge effect. I don't like the idea of my city being a panopticon regardless of how low the crime rate is. Not having privacy anywhere I go is not a nice feeling. And as far as I know, there isn't any law stopping police from looking into your windows without a warrant.


So, D&D, is this just another "who cares" step to fight crime at the expense of a bit of privacy or is this some orwellian shit?

MalaysianShrew on
Never trust a big butt and a smile.

Posts

  • AbsoluteZeroAbsoluteZero Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Man. Did those guys not read 1984?

    (My vote is obviously for Orwellian shit)

    3DS Friend Code: 0817-5033-8184 // Nintendo Network ID: AbsoluteZero
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Man. Did those guys not read 1984?

    (My vote is obviously for Orwellian shit)

    They thought it was an instruction manual.

  • GlaealGlaeal Registered User
    edited May 2007
    Don't forget this

    Big Brother is watching you.

    Qingu wrote: »
    In fact, there was never any decree by God through the Prophet that they couldn't recieve the priesthood.
    The last nine words of this statement are unnecessary.
  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    That's not the worst of it.
    “Police in Weston-super-Mare have been shining bright halogen lights from helicopters on to youths gathered in parks and other public places. The light temporarily blinds them, and is intended to ‘move them on’, in the words of one Weston police officer.”

    Blinding teenagers for standing around in a park to get them to move. Bright idea that. Especially if they happen to have a mirror handy and could blind the pilot.

    tea-1.jpg
  • wwtMaskwwtMask Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Having just returned from vacation in Britain, I have to say that it was almost unreal to me how many CCTV cameras are in London. Those damn things seem like they're everywhere. I also watched an hour long show on BBC in which they were showing cases in which the cameras were useful. With the relatively extreme cases they showed, it looked like a pitch to scare you into thinking not only that the cameras were useful, but that they were necessary. It's not quite Big Brother over there yet, but it sure seems like thye're working toward it.

    When he dies, I hope they write "Worst Affirmative Action Hire, EVER" on his grave. His corpse should be trolled.
    Twitter - @liberaltruths | Google+ - http://gplus.to/wwtMask | Occupy Tallahassee
  • agoajagoaj Pik-at-this MeleeRegistered User regular
    edited May 2007
    moniker wrote: »
    That's not the worst of it.
    “Police in Weston-super-Mare have been shining bright halogen lights from helicopters on to youths gathered in parks and other public places. The light temporarily blinds them, and is intended to ‘move them on’, in the words of one Weston police officer.”

    Blinding teenagers for standing around in a park to get them to move. Bright idea that. Especially if they happen to have a mirror handy and could blind the pilot.

    That's impossible, all pilots wear shades.

    PoMXsb6.png
  • GorakGorak Registered User
    edited May 2007
    wwtMask wrote: »
    It's not quite Big Brother over there yet, but it sure seems like thye're working toward it.

    Well we did invent the panopticon.

    These drone cameras on the other hand could be handy for football crowds. If they carried thermal cameras, it'd be a lot cheaper and faster than trying to get a helicopter out.

  • EchoEcho staring is caring Super Moderator, Moderator mod
    edited May 2007
    In other news, umbrellas will become suddenly popular, no matter the weather.

  • FallingmanFallingman Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Honestly, I know people like to talke about the US becoming an Orwellian nightmare, but I think that the UK's preoccupation with the "Nanny State" (Oh please Mr Government, raise my children for me!) makes it much more likely to happen here.

    We already have Cameras that yell at you if you do something "antisocial"... Just put one in my house and call me Winston. That way I dont have to be responsible for my actions.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • DarkWarriorDarkWarrior __BANNED USERS
    edited May 2007
    People will look back on V for Vendetta as a historical documentary.

    ...it's in the shape of a giant c**k.
  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    edited May 2007
    agoaj wrote: »
    That's impossible, all pilots wear shades.
    ...During night.

    I'm kinda scared about the UK and their loving on CCTV.

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
  • TastyfishTastyfish Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    The more CCTV you have the less you have to worry about as its not possible to go looking for crimes due to the vast amount of footage. The UAVs are probably a little different since you're presumably having someone pilot them, but still they'll probably be too expensive to use everywhere anyway like CCTV would be and more when you would send someone in persuit of a criminal.

    Between being seen in a public place and Guantanamo bay...know which I would pick.

  • GorakGorak Registered User
    edited May 2007
    Aldo wrote: »
    agoaj wrote: »
    That's impossible, all pilots wear shades.
    ...During night.

    I'm kinda scared about the UK and their loving on CCTV.

    A lot of the cameras go up because it's a cheap way for a council to appear to be "tackling crime".

  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Gorak wrote: »
    Aldo wrote: »
    agoaj wrote: »
    That's impossible, all pilots wear shades.
    ...During night.

    I'm kinda scared about the UK and their loving on CCTV.

    A lot of the cameras go up because it's a cheap way for a council to appear to be "tackling crime".

    Well yes, I think that is part of the problem, they're placing those cameras all over the place, but does it actually help against anything?

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
  • japanjapan Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Personally, I don't have as big a problem with the UAVs as I do with the ubiquity of CCTV. It occurs to me that some buzzy, hovery thing is going to be more obvious than a camera on a pole.

    I don't like CCTV. I'm always very aware that it's there and it gives me that creepy feeling you get when someone you don't know is staring at you. I don't think that's very common though.

  • Something WittySomething Witty Registered User
    edited May 2007
    People will look back on V for Vendetta as a historical documentary.

    The world will look back on the story of a masked super hero with a frighteningly high IQ fighting an a-typical tyrannical government full of one sided villians as a historical documentary one day? Oh man, if that's true then the near future is going to be so awesome. Full of spinning knives and slow motion, I seriously cant wait.

    IMWithDentToo.png
  • Nexus ZeroNexus Zero Registered User
    edited May 2007
    People will look back on V for Vendetta as a historical documentary.

    Not when it's blacklisted.

    sig.jpg
  • MalaysianShrewMalaysianShrew Registered User
    edited May 2007
    Tastyfish wrote: »
    The more CCTV you have the less you have to worry about as its not possible to go looking for crimes due to the vast amount of footage. The UAVs are probably a little different since you're presumably having someone pilot them, but still they'll probably be too expensive to use everywhere anyway like CCTV would be and more when you would send someone in persuit of a criminal.

    Between being seen in a public place and Guantanamo bay...know which I would pick.

    That's not entirely true. While the police havn't caught anybody with it yet, face recognition software is still pretty new and is developing pretty quickly.

    Never trust a big butt and a smile.
  • Andrew_JayAndrew_Jay Registered User
    edited May 2007
    Aldo wrote: »
    agoaj wrote: »
    That's impossible, all pilots wear shades.
    ...During night.
    Corey-Hart.jpg

    While I was over there, I remember reading that one of the U.K.'s most senior police officials was actually very critical of expanding the CCTV coverage. I think it was because it's being used more and more in smaller centers - without any crime problems worth mentioning, yet CCTV is showing up.

  • MrMisterMrMister Valuing scholarship above all elseRegistered User regular
    edited May 2007
    There's no right to privacy in public places.

    Get back to me when the camera's in your living room.

  • HacksawHacksaw J Duggan Wrestler at LawRegistered User regular
    edited May 2007
    MrMister wrote: »
    There's no right to privacy in public places.

    Get back to me when the camera's in your living room.
    Okay.

  • MalaysianShrewMalaysianShrew Registered User
    edited May 2007
    MrMister wrote: »
    There's no right to privacy in public places.

    Get back to me when the camera's in your living room.

    My question, though, is can this UAV legally look into your bedroom windows? As long as it's hovering over the street, I don't know that it's not illegal for cops to watch you inside your house.

    Never trust a big butt and a smile.
  • TastyfishTastyfish Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Tastyfish wrote: »
    The more CCTV you have the less you have to worry about as its not possible to go looking for crimes due to the vast amount of footage. The UAVs are probably a little different since you're presumably having someone pilot them, but still they'll probably be too expensive to use everywhere anyway like CCTV would be and more when you would send someone in persuit of a criminal.

    Between being seen in a public place and Guantanamo bay...know which I would pick.

    That's not entirely true. While the police havn't caught anybody with it yet, face recognition software is still pretty new and is developing pretty quickly.

    Its a step beyond face recognition software though, since you still need the computer to actually look for 'crime'. It would be largely pointless even then since the majority of crime caught on CCTV is going to be breaking and entering type stuff (in which a simple motion detector would do - afterwhich you know that a crime has been committed and can look manually at the footage from various cameras at the right time) or be a mugging/assault type thing in which there is a victim willing to press charges and tell you when and where you should look.

  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Hacksaw wrote: »
    MrMister wrote: »
    There's no right to privacy in public places.

    Get back to me when the camera's in your living room.
    Okay.

    Yeah.

    How is footage from these cameras being used? Is it being used to just fight the "bad guys"? Or is it being used to target political dissidents, like people who attend protest rallies. Can individuals use it to their own advantage? I wouldn't support this sort of system regardless, but they should need a ton of regulations and safe guards in place to even consider having that many cameras around. The risk of abuse by government, police or individuals is massive.

    What a fucked up place, I dont understand how people can tolerate such pervasive surveillance.

    ragesig.jpg

  • LeitnerLeitner Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    What a fucked up place, I dont understand how people can tolerate such pervasive surveillance.

    Maybe because we don't have the same kind of fear of the government that many places have? Really the number of cameras is useful in that if an assault or other criminal act occurs in a public place there's a good chance that the perpetrator is caught on camera. Whilst there are some possible downsides (oh noes 1984!!11!) there are some massive benefits e.g. it's when not if repeat muggers will be caught on the underground.

  • WalrusWalrus Registered User
    edited May 2007
    It gets better

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/6695685.stm

    I have to say I don't go in for all the 'omg police state' rhetoric that gets thrown about but this is just ridiculous. I'm hopeful it'll just not be passed due to it being completely fucking stupid, but it shows the kind of agenda that the Home Office is heading towards.

    I appreciate we want to stop terrorism, but to be honest I'm more bothered about maintaining basic rights. Combined with the proposal that MP's be exempt from the Freedom of Information Act (admittedly unrelated to this issue), I'm getting just slightly uneasy about the way the government seems to think it should be conducting itself.

  • Lave IILave II Registered User
    edited May 2007
    I emailed merside police about this trial.

    Basically, to avoid corruption, for a standard fee of £10 you can request footage of yourself recorded by a CCTV camera. This is a right as part of the Data Protection Act.

    As it's in a fixed recorded location you can work out when and where you need apply for footage for.

    Aside: A friend used this to recorded a little play he and his friends put on.

    Anyhow. These drones are put forward as "silent" and being mobile there is no trail for you to follow to request footage - or even notice you're being watched. How often do you look up? So I don't see how they comply with the DPA. Bet I don't get a response...

  • MrMisterMrMister Valuing scholarship above all elseRegistered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Hacksaw wrote: »
    MrMister wrote: »
    There's no right to privacy in public places.

    Get back to me when the camera's in your living room.
    Okay.

    So a couple guys abused them, got caught, and are going to prison?

    Surely we are living in a dystopia.

  • Lave IILave II Registered User
    edited May 2007
    MrMister wrote: »
    Hacksaw wrote: »
    MrMister wrote: »
    There's no right to privacy in public places.

    Get back to me when the camera's in your living room.
    Okay.

    So a couple guys abused them, got caught, and are going to prison?

    Surely we are living in a dystopia.

    I was looking for the article about a UK police chief saying that in homes that the police are called out too multiple times then adding cameras to the inside of the property may help resolve disputes.

    Couldn't find - but did get:

    Houstan Police chiefs wants CCTV in private spaces - including homes
    More critical article about that article (not read it myself)
    Britsh article about police wanting to put cameras inside houses that are repeatedly burgled to catch returning criminals.

    Yes all those have "legit" uses but god damn - it's a pretty big "baby" step there.

  • japanjapan Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Lave II wrote: »
    Anyhow. These drones are put forward as "silent" and being mobile there is no trail for you to follow to request footage - or even notice you're being watched. How often do you look up? So I don't see how they comply with the DPA. Bet I don't get a response...

    Everyday I think of new reasons to own a pocket EMP device.

    Those "stop and question" powers sound an awful lot like the powers Strathclyde Police were given under "Operation Spotlight" which was intended to combat knife crime. They were allowed to stop and search anyone with the threat of arrest for non-compliance. Happened to me a couple of times, and it was less than fun.

  • MrMisterMrMister Valuing scholarship above all elseRegistered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Lave II wrote: »
    I was looking for the article about a UK police chief saying that in homes that the police are called out too multiple times then adding cameras to the inside of the property may help resolve disputes.

    Couldn't find - but did get:

    Houstan Police chiefs wants CCTV in private spaces - including homes

    The police chief proposed something, and everyone else told him he was crazy.

    It's not said explicitly, but I'm imagining that these were put in with consent of the homeowner.

    The sky is falling!

  • Lave IILave II Registered User
    edited May 2007
    MrMister wrote: »
    Lave II wrote: »
    I was looking for the article about a UK police chief saying that in homes that the police are called out too multiple times then adding cameras to the inside of the property may help resolve disputes.

    Couldn't find - but did get:

    Houstan Police chiefs wants CCTV in private spaces - including homes

    The police chief proposed something, and everyone else told him he was crazy.

    It's not said explicitly, but I'm imagining that these were put in with consent of the homeowner.

    The sky is falling!

    Yes. Yes. Yes. It's not the end of the world. But the big issue is baby steps.

    You can't argue with consentual baby steps. And then another and then another. It's about the path you are walking as a country. Obiviously actually having cameras in your home seems a ridculous future that could never happen. But go see "The Lives of Others" - it's a german film about the horrendous things the Stazi did. It could "never happen" in Europe today. But this was happening in the 80's.

    It only needs a few decades for a country to change fundamentally.

    Not to prove it. Not to say it would happen (as I don't think it would). But baby steps allow changes that could never happen in a single step slip by as the country slides into a totalitarian state.

    I can imagine the following series of events each seperated with a few months or even years.

    1) Repeatedly burgled houses get vid camers to record future break ins with consent of owner.
    2) This works very well. Insurance and Costs fall for those who agree.
    3) Police extend scheme.
    4) Police suggest scheme for people with ASBOs, abuse etc - but don't implement it.
    5) Reports of Police become more willing to aid those who agree to cameras and not to those who refuse.
    6) Increasing reports of good cameras in homes do.
    7) Large public child sex crime could have been stopped by putting camera in paedophiles house.
    8) Public support for cameras in "proper" criminals houses even though they've served their time.
    9) Plan works very well.
    10) So well extended to ASBOS (remember you can be given an ASBO for anything) and minor criminals.
    11) Camera to protect your propety schemes extended voluntarily to those who wish to prevent burglary.
    12) Huge savings for those people in insurance etc.
    13) Huge "terrorist bust,"/"Paedophile bust,"/"Wife beating" by the use of these "burglary" cameras. Or more importantly giant attack not foiled because property didn't have cameras.
    14) Large retoric on good citzens have cameras for others saftey. Cameras become standardised in newly built houses.

    With other events happening simultaneously you could see events like that transpire. But the small steps between each are hard to protest. And the larger steps can be hidden behind 9/11 or 7/7 or future "terror" dates.

    Will that happen? No. Of course not. But only because silly people over reacting - keep over reacting.

  • AzioAzio Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    MrMister wrote: »
    Hacksaw wrote: »
    MrMister wrote: »
    There's no right to privacy in public places.

    Get back to me when the camera's in your living room.
    Okay.

    So a couple guys abused them, got caught, and are going to prison?

    Surely we are living in a dystopia.
    I'm not a fan of the profiling mentality, where any group of people between the ages of 13-25 is basically not allowed to freely associate, outside, in a public place without being harassed by law enforcement. Because, as we know, all adolescents are petty criminals and if you see 3 or more of them in a group they're obviously up to no good..

  • Mr BubblesMr Bubbles David Koresh Superstar Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    The strange thing is an awful lot of people seem to be utterly apathetic towards any move like this

  • durandal4532durandal4532 Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Yeah, okay, so this isn't the end of the world. But has any government started with "flying camera drones" and ended in "utopia"?

    Seriously, people. Man-hacks.

  • MalaysianShrewMalaysianShrew Registered User
    edited May 2007
    Oh god, I never got the connection between this and HL2 before. Ye Gods!

    Never trust a big butt and a smile.
  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    edited May 2007
    I didn't want to post about it.

    But I'll be taking my crowbar with me when I visit England.

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
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