Political And Economic Theory

Surveillance in America are we being Watched Converter Boxes



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The watchers are watching. Perhaps you can see them and perhaps you can't, but they are most certainly watching. To ensure that every citizen is living their lives accordingly with the law, they who watch are persistent and relentless. Many means of surveillance are right in front of you and you don't even realize it.

Cameras on satellites can definitely take high-quality pictures of the earth from space, but this is an expensive means of surveillance. Think more locally, like the cameras you see fixed to traffic lights that record visual footage of accidents, or even the cameras that will take a picture of your license plate if you are speeding through an intersection. Is it really too far-reaching to think that general surveillance might be another unnamed purpose for these devices?

The above mentioned devices might be harmless and do exactly what they say they do and nothing more. Under this assumption it must be considered how this technology could perhaps be used to catch someone trying to mug you in a dark alley or break into your home. That would be great wouldn't it! Put cameras on every street and on or in every home, that way you'll always be safe.

Let's not forget the wise words of Benjamin Franklin: "When you sacrifice liberty for security you lose both." There is a lot of one-sided trust from the citizens of the U.S. for the government to use surveillance technology responsibly whereas the government doesn't seem to trust the American citizen enough to let them go about their day without being watched. Arrogantly insulting the intelligence of the American people the government continues to utilize surveillance techniques that are right in front of our faces.

Consider the mandatory switch to digital television that will occur in the U.S. on February 17, 2009. After this date you will only be able to watch television with a cable box, satellite box, converter box, or digital (HD) TV. All of these devices which were recently built have built-in camera capabilities. Where is the lens you ask? Right in front of you.

All cable, satellite and converter boxes, as well as HD TVs, have sensors right in front of them that receive signals from the remote. Built into that sensor is a lens that can receive images. With all broadcasts being transmitted through a digital signal it would be fairly simple to embed a program in the signal that facilitates the use of the sensor's camera capabilities.

Too far-fetched? Consider what was stated by Gerard Kunkel, senior VP of user experience at Comcast, during the Digital Living Room conference on March 18,2008. He stated that the cable company is experimenting with different camera technologies built into devices so it can know who's in your living room. For your protection only, of course.

The surveillance technology is all around us, but most people still carry the mentality that the government is simply too moral and just to use this equipment to spy on the average citizen. Many people can't even entertain the idea that it could be true and therefore the business of violating privacy continues to thrive. Most refuse to question the methods of surveillance out there and that is precisely why there are now chips you can implant into your child that have GPS emitters in them. The government knows they can get away with it and now they are just pushing to see how far they can go.

The watchers are always watching. Sometimes they watch from afar, other times they may as well be waiving at you. Either way you are being kept under surveillance the same way a prisoner is kept under surveillance. For your own protection, of course.

 

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