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Talking CCTV Cameras in UK

By Patrick | April 5, 2007

How long before the ‘talking’ CCTV cameras in the UK become perpetrators of noise pollution? This is just hysterical. The UK is actually implementing CCTV cameras in 20 areas across the region that will talk to you if it sees you breaking certain laws or ordinances such as littering, fighting and other “criminal damages”.

Are you reading this? Britain is installing cameras that will talk to you and give you commands and instruct you to not litter, tell you where the trash can is, tell you to stop fighting, or even ask you to move along instead of loitering around. This is ridiculous.

I’m past the privacy implications of this technology as the UK is the poster-child for a police state and surveillance society. They already have over 4.2 million CCTV cameras across the county. What’s interesting is even some of the citizens don’t see the cameras as a good solution and have phrased this new approach as possible “scarecrow” policing. A quote from one citizen:

“Whether this is moving down a track of almost ‘scarecrow’ policing rather than real policing – actually insuring that we have more bobbies on the beat – I think that’s what we really want to see, albeit that an initiative like this may be an effective tool in certain circumstances.”

Think of all the logistical nightmares this could produce. I can only imagine a number of teenagers who are going to screw this system by pretending to litter, or mock-fighting just so they can elicit a response from the talking camera. I think in my high school days I definitely would’ve done that. However, I’m sure there will be a law against that and then the camera will ask you to stop mocking it and to move along. Anyway, I thought it was a funny story.

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Topics: Government, Surveillance | 126 Comments »

126 Responses to “Talking CCTV Cameras in UK”

  1. AW Says:
    May 1st, 2007 at 12:08 am

    I was woken up 3 times during the night between 2am and 4am by a speech by loud speaking CCTV which culminated in “please leave the area”. I know this will sound a bit daft but in my dozy state I wasn’t sure what it was or who it was talking to .. I sat bolt upright in bed waiting for it to happen again so I could hear the message properly .. feeling concerned for what was happening around me, but it didn’t go off again until I’d fallen back to sleep!