Privacy

Happy Security!

|

hello kitty, or whatever

Cute security cameras. Making the surveillance state easier to love! From Crunchgear:

Surveillance cameras can sometimes give you a creepy feeling (especially the ones you can't directly see) but the nation of cute- and friendliness, Japan, now offers two solutions for that problem.

One example of a "friendly" CCTV camera is the Daruma surveillance doll. Daruma is a wish doll in Nippon so that many Japanese people see the little guy in a positive light by nature (even though it says "security camera" on the doll in the video above).

For more on the upsides of zero privacy, read me and reason contributor Declan McCullagh.

NEXT: Obama Apparently Drops Windfall Profits Tax Proposal

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. She’s a doll alright. Where’s the camera?

  2. Well of course this is no problem at all if sold to private employers because workers are under no pressure to work for an employer who uses these kinds of things on them and blah blah blah no real loss of liberty blah blah blah.

  3. MNG-

    You should not have a problem with the cameras because collectivism demands it!

  4. It won’t be long before an American store owner is busted for having one of those Daruma doll cameras on the floor of his shop, with a sign saying, “Ancient Japanese legend says that young girls in skirts who step over the Daruma doll will be blessed with good luck and happiness”.

  5. Daruma is Bodhidharma, the Indian sage who brought Buddhism to east Asia; this is a little like putting a surveillance camera inside a plastic Jesus.

  6. Actually libertymike I have a problem with it because I like freedom. I just don’t let libertarianism get in the way of that like libertarians often do.

    I’m all for a law barring employers from engaging in types of surveillance on employees because I don’t give a shit about the “freedom” of employers to use their bargaining advantage to coax workers into “consensual” employment agreements that violate the freedom of the employees. Or rather I give a shit but think the freedom from surveillance that we get from such a law far outweighs the employers freedom to engage in such things.

  7. I don’t see this having a large market.

    Security cameras primarily provide deterrence. To this end, they need to be highly visible. Secret camera’s, such as nanny cams, need to be highly unobtrusive. A camera that is not obvious at first glance but is still discernible to a second glance won’t provide much deterrence.

    I personally don’t care about surveillance. I make it a point to conduct my affairs as if I were in public view anyway. In any case, with in ten years we will all be under de facto surveillance 24/7 from myriad electronic devices which will have sound, audio and other sensors built into them for other purposes. Cars, doors, cell phones, buildings, tennis shoes etc will all record their surroundings.

    Get used to the fishbowl.

  8. so that would mean fake cameras work just as well as a deterrent as real ones, yeah?

    seems like they would work for the harassing effect of feeling watched, which i suppose we all just accept, rather than helping with crime though. wait, do cameras stop crime?

    whatever, i fucking love big brother, ‘specially if its a happy god i can pray to for karmic points.

  9. MNG:

    I actually quit a job the other year because of the intrusive employee surveillance. The company is now hemorrhaging the people, even when the economy is this unstable… it’s a very negative thing to treat your employees as untrustworthy, and damaging to business.

  10. Great, Big Brother is coming as Hello Kitty…

  11. I’m all for a law barring employers from engaging in types of surveillance on employees because I don’t give a shit about the “freedom” of employers to use their bargaining advantage to coax workers into “consensual” employment agreements that violate the freedom of the employees

    *sigh*. Does that include surfing the internet on work hours, or is it OK if the employer tries to keep up productivity, given that he paid for the servers, connections and computers?

    Does that include the inside of the building for security?

    I mean, what surveillance is it that has you in freedom-violating mode again?

  12. Don’t you think unionization is the only way to protect workers from that exploitation, TAO?

  13. Or rather I give a shit but think the freedom from surveillance that we get from such a law far outweighs the employers freedom to engage in such things.

    Does this mean I get to determine what you can and can’t put in your house?

  14. Babies, the lot of you. In thirty years, tops, everyone will have little cameras embedded into their craniums. You have no privacy. Get used to it.

  15. privacy I need privacy to do my business. I like my privacy. I like cameras too. I don’t like cameras when I need my privacy. Sometimes I like cameras when you need your privacy.

  16. Does this mean I get to determine what you can and can’t put in your house?

    Of course because a house and a jobsite are the exact thing! Well, no, only maybe to a libertarian is that true, so no, it does’nt. But straw smells good on a winter evening…

    “I mean, what surveillance is it that has you in freedom-violating mode again?”

    The kind that impinges on a person’s privacy in an unreasonable way. Like if I were to ask you what kind of search and seizure by cops would have you in a freedom violating mode I imagine that there would be many practices you’d be against and many you’d be ok with.

  17. so that would mean fake cameras work just as well as a deterrent as real ones, yeah?

    Bullseye. You’d be surprised at just how effective they can be.

  18. Daruma is Bodhidharma, the Indian sage who brought Buddhism to east Asia; this is a little like putting a surveillance camera inside a plastic Jesus.

    “Remember- Jesus is watching you.”

  19. I have a camera in my ass. For surveillance!

  20. Next they’ll put one in a Domo-kun. And many kittens will die.

  21. Seems to me like everywhere you go now its all about security, cameras and microphones. Pretty sad isnt it.

    Jess
    http://www.anonymize.us.tc

  22. Cameras themselves cannot take away anyone’s freedoms any more than traffic lights or picket fences. I don’t get a “creepy feeling” when I’m experiencing life outside the walls of my home, where I’m being looked at by humans directly and indirectly. Does a right to privacy extend to public places? Maybe we should all wear ski masks and hoodies. I am not alarmed, and instances of abuse thus far are isolated, not that those few examples are not exploited by propagandists and cited by paranoiacs.

  23. I’m all for a law barring employers from engaging in types of surveillance on employees because I don’t give a shit about the “freedom” of employers to use their bargaining advantage to coax workers into “consensual” employment agreements that violate the freedom of the employees.

    How do surveillance cameras in the workplace violate the freedom of employees, again?

    The kind that impinges on a person’s privacy in an unreasonable way.

    What expectation of privacy do you have at work? Outside the restrooms, that is?

    Like if I were to ask you what kind of search and seizure by cops would have you in a freedom violating mode I imagine that there would be many practices you’d be against and many you’d be ok with.

    Do you honestly see no difference between search and seizure by agents of the state and an employer putting surveillance cameras on their property?

    it’s a very negative thing to treat your employees as untrustworthy, and damaging to business.

    On this note, I finally managed to get my employer to dump their random drug testing policy. They never used it anyway, but still . . .

  24. I don’t get a “creepy feeling” when I’m experiencing life outside the walls of my home, where I’m being looked at by humans directly and indirectly.

    The power dynamic is relatively equal when you can see the people who see you. This changes when you are being observed by a camera, which grants the viewer anonymity and protection from reciprocal scrutiny. In other words, surveillance is not just a privacy issue, but an equality issue.

    Maybe we should all wear ski masks and hoodies.

    Try it and you will find out exactly to what extent pervasive surveillance has created a requirement for individuals to yield themselves to identification in the public sphere. In other words, you’ll be arrested. In yet other words, you’ll discover private actions that don’t violate libertarian ideology can easily lead to public outcomes that libertarians don’t want. Or maybe you don’t mind being dominated – as long as you’re submitting to private interests.

  25. If Japanese guest gives you a doll as a gift after renting your apartment for the inauguration, I’d advise caution. At the very least, keep it in the living room, not the bedroom.

  26. Of course because a house and a jobsite are the exact thing! Well, no, only maybe to a libertarian is that true, so no, it does’nt. But straw smells good on a winter evening…

    Property is property.

  27. Or maybe you don’t mind being dominated – as long as you’re submitting to private interests.

    Where the hell do you work? The only time I have felt “dominated” by an employer was when I was in the Army.

  28. Or maybe you don’t mind being dominated – as long as you’re submitting to private interests.

    If somebody’s preventing you from leaving, you might want to call the police.

  29. I have a problem with the governemnt wasting billions on securiy cameras bought from Lockheed Martin and the increase on the large increase in police state type initiatives, especially when the president is a religous fundamentalist hell bent creating a thocratic fundamentalist governmnt. However, your being paranoid if you thnk that president-elect Obama will use cameras for anything but public safety. If your not guilty of doing truly horrendous things then you have nothing to fear for at least the next 4 years.

  30. I have a problem with the governemnt wasting billions on securiy cameras bought from Lockheed Martin and the increase on the large increase in police state type initiatives, especially when the president is a religous fundamentalist hell bent creating a thocratic fundamentalist governmnt. However, your being paranoid if you thnk that president-elect Obama will use cameras for anything but public safety. If your not guilty of doing truly horrendous things then you have nothing to fear for at least the next 4 years.

    So its all about having the Right People in Charge?

    This seems like an opportune time to remind people of RC’z Fifth Iron Law:

    Any power used for you today will be used against you tomorrow.

  31. Folk, MNG knows the difference between state agencies and employers. He just does not care. To him, anyone with 1$ more of buying power is in an advantageous bargaining position, and is therefore deserving of the suspension of uses of his property.

    Don’t bother trying to convince him. He’s not here to converse; he’s here to troll.

  32. Where the hell do you work? The only time I have felt “dominated” by an employer was when I was in the Army.

    I was talking about what would happen when someone tries to put on a ski mask to hide from private cameras surveilling public space i.e. that someone would get arrested i.e. dominated by the state in the service of private interests.

    Wasn’t talking about the workplace. I happen to live in Ireland where, except for the US multinationals (Intel is notorious), nobody really gives a crap what you do in the office. Why only Friday I cracked open a whiskey baby at my desk as the workday ended.

  33. “Cameras themselves cannot take away anyone’s freedoms any more than traffic lights or picket fences.” Now I get to use this one: so you don’t mind if I put a camera in your house (wife’s most used shower would be my preference, ok?).

    “How do surveillance cameras in the workplace violate the freedom of employees, again?”

    They violate their privacy and their freedom to work somewhere where that right is not a condition of employment.

    “He’s not here to converse; he’s here to troll.”

    Is any disagreement that does not result in you convincing me trolling? TAO has a MIGHTY high opinion of his nascent knowledge set and debating skills…For what its worth most of the world agrees with me, so the ball is kind of you guy’s court to convince folks like me…

    “If somebody’s preventing you from leaving, you might want to call the police.”

    Maybe he likes feeding himself and his family? There is more than mere physical coercion in the world, ask a married person some day.

  34. Maybe he likes feeding himself and his family? There is more than mere physical coercion in the world, ask a married person some day.

    Oh, I’m married. I didn’t realize that people now owe me a living because of it.

  35. R C Dean,

    “Any power used for you today will be used against you tomorrow. ”

    This sort of religous like faith in anti-government idealogy is the type of fundamentalist mentality that allowed this economy to get so out of hand in the first place.

  36. However, your being paranoid if you thnk that president-elect Obama will use cameras for anything but public safety. If your not guilty of doing truly horrendous things then you have nothing to fear for at least the next 4 years.

    Let’s assuming your “religous like faith” in Obama is reasonable, for the sake of argument

    What, then, after year 5? Year 9?

    Those cameras would still be there when Team Red took power, again. Or would the GOP be mystically unable to do bad things with something created by Team Blue?

  37. Um guys, mouse over the link in Joe’s name.

  38. MNG, you have been making nothing more than this tired old argument of “economic coercion”. You know the arguments against that concept, but you feel the need to repeat the tenets of “economic coercion” over and over again.

    Economic coercion is an oxymoron. It’s nonsense. It doesn’t exist, and no matter how many tears you shed about it, it never will.

  39. Um guys, mouse over the link in Joe’s name.

    I would hope you would not even need the link to figure that one out.

    Now I get to use this one: so you don’t mind if I put a camera in your house (wife’s most used shower would be my preference, ok?).

    My house is not your property, so no, you cannot put a camera in my house. Feel free to put one in your own house.

    They violate their privacy and their freedom to work somewhere where that right is not a condition of employment.

    You do not have the right to work for an employer under any terms you want. You have the right to refuse to work for someone if you do not like their terms. If you do not like an employer’s surveillance, work somewhere else.

  40. Is any disagreement that does not result in you convincing me trolling?

    Any “disagreement” wherein you make the same arguments repeatedly, without even a hint of good faith discussion, is trolling.

    Which, short of the educational conversation we had months ago (where you were making pretty much the same arguments you are here today), is pretty much the summation of your addition to the “content” here.

  41. You don’t really own your house. Your mortgage holder owns it…and your mortage just got bought by the government. So now that the government has rescued you, we demand that you allow us to put cameras in your daughters bedroom.If you have nothing to hide then what are you scared of?

  42. Haa…I caught “R C Dean” and “Eric the .5b” in one day of Joe imitations.

    If people keep calling concerned observer “CO” then I will bring back “Cosmotarian Overlord”. Frankly, I’m a little insulted that Concerned Observer is called CO

  43. “Economic coercion is an oxymoron. It’s nonsense. It doesn’t exist, and no matter how many tears you shed about it, it never will.”

    You’re dense. Prove it doesn’t exist. More people think it does than do not. The onus is on you brother if you haven’t noticed.

    Prove economic and other forms of coercion do not negate the “voluntary” nature of certain agreements and transactions. That only physical coercion does this. Go ahead, demonstrate brother. The fact that I don’t buy your arguments or don’t feel refuted by you doesn’t mean I’m not listening. Your just not convincing.

    You’re just stomping your feet because you want the rules of debate and definitions used therein to be set up your way. I don’t have to buy that. Most people don’t. We outvote you, chronically and everywhere. I’ll be thinking of your need not to convince folks like me when I drive my Chrsyler car subsidized with your dad’s taxes on the roads your family pays taxes to fund while I whistle to NPR which you pay taxes to put on to my job which is protected from economic coercion by agencies like OHSA, the NLRB, etc., paid for with your tax money and upheld by force if necessary with cops paid for with your families tax money.

    Yummy.

  44. Prove it doesn’t exist

    There is no logical way to do this. Proving a negative? Is that you what just asked me?

    Prove that there are NOT little invisible goblins running the motor in airplanes.

    I’ll be thinking of your need not to convince folks like me when I drive my Chrsyler car subsidized with your dad’s taxes on the roads your family pays taxes to fund while I whistle to NPR which you pay taxes to put on to my job which is protected from economic coercion by agencies like OHSA, the NLRB, etc., paid for with your tax money and upheld by force if necessary with cops paid for with your families tax money.

    Gosh, what a sweetheart you are. I guess this is what happens when you strike a nerve with dumb folks.

  45. Frankly, I do not need to convince folks like you because you’re dedicated to not being convinced. That’s what makes you so trollicious.

  46. Well, us not being convinced folks in this area seem to have a lot more folks on our side. I guess the market of ideas has spoken on this one ;).

    Economic coercion is actually pretty easy to prove: imagine a hype where a guy who has four hungry kids and no money in the bank is asked to come to the bosses house on his day off and clean up puke from the boss’ son’s frat party. Now imagine the same but the guy has a million dollars in his bank account.

    If the first was more likely to say yes than the second why was that? The only thing that changed was his degree of want. So you admit that degree of want can coerce folks to agree to do things they would not otherwise (just like an asswhipping can coerce someone to do something they would not otherwise do, in fact often more effectively).

    There are a million such hypos like that. This is in fact not rocket science.

  47. That’s the freedom I want to protect, the freedom of that guy to say no to his boss. Many people’s economic position puts them in far less of a position to say no to such things than other people.

  48. So you admit that degree of want can coerce folks to agree to do things they would not otherwise

    Um, no. The degree of want can affect the choices you make.

    “Economic coercion”, again, does not exist. You are not entitled to that job, but, you have a mouth and an ability to write letters, right? So tell everyone what a giant jerk X Corporation is.

    Tell you what: send me an actual story, not just Dickensian hypotheticals you’re pulling out of your ass in an attempt to play on my sympathies and emotions, and I promise you that I’ll boycott the place myself.

    So, how would you solve hypo A? Just ban any work outside of the scope of an employee? Specifically ban the cleaning of vomit?

    The only thing that changed was his degree of want.

    I’m probably more in “want” than you are, MNG. And it’s just not fair! Better send me a check, cracka.

  49. That’s the freedom I want to protect, the freedom of that guy to say no to his boss.

    He should be allowed to say no and keep his job? Why? Because your manufactured hypothetical offends your sensibilities?

    Sorry, MNG, but you have a right to be an asshole in this country. Not everything can conform to your delicate constitution.

  50. I understand your job usurping your freedoms while at work on the clock. I don’t the concept of your job usurping your freedoms in your own home, such as if you can smoke or not.

    Survellience will one day make your 5th amendment right against self incrimination moot. LEOs will not need to ask you where you were, what you did and such, your electronic metadata will provide the story for them.

  51. “You are not entitled to that job, but, you have a mouth and an ability to write letters, right? So tell everyone what a giant jerk X Corporation is.”

    And lose your job and you and yur kids don’t eat. Since most people see them and their kids eating as necessary they will agree to do things they normally would not. Hence it is less voluntary.

    Why do you think fraud is wrong for example? I mean, in fraud cases the guy freely gives the check to the frauder. I bet you think its wrong because with false or the whole material information there was not a truly voluntary consent. The same applies for economic hardship.

    You want examples? Crack open your casebooks, courts have been recognizing cases of economic hardship even way back in the good ol’ Dickensian days. Of course all I need is a workable hypo as you are arguing that economic coercion is an oxymoron.

    “He should be allowed to say no and keep his job? Why?” He should be in a better position to say no, like having a union and overtime laws and such. But tell me why the employer should be able to fire him on a whim?

  52. And then, given there are many more employees than employees, tell me how that maximizes overall freedom in our society.

  53. Crack open your casebooks, courts have been recognizing cases of economic hardship even way back in the good ol’ Dickensian days.

    Cite one, specifically in relation to contract law, since that is what we’re talking about here.

    You don’t know what you’re talking about.

  54. But tell me why the employer should be able to fire him on a whim?

    The employer owns the business and it’s his capital that is on the line. If he wants to set up stupid rules, that’s his bag.

  55. The transactions between the employer and the employee mean that fifth yacht for the former and food for the latter’s kids, thus they are not equally bargaining in any real sense.

    I would have welfare for the guy to feed his kids, health care for them, etc., and he would be more “free” to enter into only truly voluntary bargains. I like freedom, go figure

  56. I like freedom, go figure

    I didn’t know freedom = entitlement.

    You like freedom so long as someone else is paying the lions share to fund your vision.

    The transactions between the employer and the employee mean that fifth yacht for the former and food for the latter’s kids,

    What an absolutely cartoonish and childish view of the world. Damn those fat-cat capitalists, while the proletariat starve, they’re feasting on caviar and cavorting about on the French Riveria!

  57. “””The employer owns the business and it’s his capital that is on the line. If he wants to set up stupid rules, that’s his bag.”””

    And hopefully, if the guy is too stupid with his rules then his buisness will fail. That’s fair. Right? But when his buisness requires my tax money to survive, then it’s not so cut and dry anymore. I have no problem with the feds making all sorts of stupid rules as requirement for a bailout as long as employers want to impose stupid rules on me.

  58. Jim Walsh | December 2, 2008, 9:57pm | #
    Great, Big Brother is coming as Hello Kitty…

    Subcreatures! Gozer the Gozerian, Gozer the Destructor, Volguus Zildrohar, the Traveler, has come! Choose and perish!

    The choice is made! The Traveler has come!

  59. “What an absolutely cartoonish and childish view of the world. Damn those fat-cat capitalists, while the proletariat starve, they’re feasting on caviar and cavorting about on the French Riveria!”

    Wow, with arguments like this it is AMAZING that I remain unconverted by the likes of TAO, I really must be a troll.

    “Of course all I need is a workable hypo as you are arguing that economic coercion is an oxymoron.”

    You seemed to miss that point. You do know the difference between a conceptual and an empirical claim? You made the former and hypos are perfect for skewering them. It only need be conceviable.

    “send me an actual story, not just Dickensian hypotheticals you’re pulling out of your ass in an attempt to play on my sympathies and emotions, and I promise you that I’ll boycott the place myself.”

    As to empirical claims (which you make in the quote above, a different matter than claiming the term is an oxymoron, doesn’t exist and is nonsense which is a conceptual claim) it is indeed not common to give you a Dickensian example post Dickens because post-Dickens the very social legislation I advocate has been passed in droves to prevent these from occuring. Yes with OSHA, NLRB, establishment of hte Labor department and its driving legislation, etc., the conceptual situations I mention above are less empirically common. That’s the point.

    Interestingly in places where those provisions do not reach effectively, like illegal immigrants working in the US, you can find these Dickensian “bargains” going on (people working in horrible conditions for less than legal wages, sexually harassed, having contractual promises broken, etc).

    “Cite one, specifically in relation to contract law, since that is what we’re talking about here.”

    Really? Your contracts casebook doesn’t have a chapter on unconscionability? Is this the same law school that did not teach you that prosecutors are officers of the court with a duty to the innocent as well as prosecuting the guilty? Are you going to Regent or Devry Law School?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unconscionable#Typical_scenarios

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.