Almost a year ago, last October, I wrote about "Internet Eyes":
"Internet Eyes (a private company) will offer up to £1,000 if viewers spot shoplifting or other crimes in progress, on the dubious pretext of combining crime prevention with the incentive of winning money.
The scheme is due to go live in Stratford-upon-Avon in November, and will stream live footage to subscribers' home computers from CCTV cameras installed in shops and other businesses.
If viewers see a crime in progress, they can press a button to alert store detectives and collect points worth up to £1,000."
A loyal reader has kindly advised me that Internet Eyes has been set up (according to "Get Wokingham") to monitor the store feed from Alworths, a shop in Wokingham.
Seemingly an investigation into the town's existing CCTV network had shown the camera feed was going back to a monitoring station in Reading, but no-one was watching it permanently.
CCTV, in theory, sounds great as a "crime prevention" tool.
However, it does not prevent crime, it merely observes the crime taking place. Unless someone in the monitoring station is alert enough, and the police quick enough, the criminals have already done their dirty deed and scarpered before the tapes are reviewed.
Allowing members of the public to access/use the feed as a form of "game show" is positively dangerous wrt privacy issues, and will bring out the very worst aspects of human nature (wrt snooping and nosiness).
This is a snoopers charter, there are more than enough saddos who have nothing better to do than watch other people doing "very little" (eg the "reality" show Big Brother).
We will become a nation of snoopers!
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