PLEASE NOTE:

MyNews24 is a user-generated section of News24.com. The stories here come from users.

 
Nkosinathi Mokoena
 
Comments: 18
Article views: 1309
 
 
Latest Badges:



 
View all Nkosinathi Mokoena's badges.
 

I am scared, we are under constant surveillance...

28 August 2012, 20:20

Few weeks ago I was rambling nearby Rondebosch streets, on the other side of the road there were technicians installing surveillance cameras (Replacing the old ones). It was not just any kind of Camera but it was the motion sensor cameras. I continued my excursion, went into the Jammie Shuttle (Bus) and I saw another camera inside the bus. From that instant, something snapped on my mind. Everything started to make sense.

Likewise, the inspection of the movie titled “Enemy of the state” which is one of my much-loved movies of all times has un-wrapped my eyes in a distinct manner. Likewise, my first Sociology lecture as an undergraduate came in to class and taught us the concept of the strange in a familiar. It is basically the idea that things are not what they seem to be thus, is it for that day onwards that I started to interpret the world in a dissimilar way in order to comprehend the social traits of life.

 Call me paranoid or whatsoever, I have a sensation that we are under constant surveillance. And yes it troubles me. In 1787, a utilitarian philosopher and theorist of British legal reform Jeremy Bentham proposed a model of Panopticon. A Panopticon is a model of a prison which was later used as an illustration by prestigious scholar Michel Foucault in his Theory of Surveillance. The Panopticon ("all-seeing") functioned as a round-the-clock surveillance machine. Its design ensured that no prisoner could ever see the 'inspector' who conducted surveillance from the privileged central location within the radial configuration. The prisoner could never know when he was being surveilled -- mental uncertainty that in it self would prove to be a crucial instrument of discipline.

A scholar such as Firmin DeBrabander (2012) shares the same sentiments and contends that our phones are subject to warrantless wiretaps. Our email and internet transactions leave a trail for some to follow. The police can access our GPS location data through our smart phones, also without a warrant. Retailers record our purchasing habits with painstaking detail. In addition, “Congress recently passed a bill that opens the gates to widespread use of surveillance drones on US soil” and this is done as a national security measure, they say.

I cannot tip my nose on the bus anymore because someone somewhere is watching us. Some of these security measures undermine our privacy. Subsequent entities we will hear or see are surveillance cameras on the rest rooms [my prediction-we are moving there soon]. The reason will always be the same “is for national security” all the time. Their installing these things everywhere yet the crime rate skies up. What are they really using them for? Just to watch me tipping my nose on the bus? What will our personal lives be like as so much more of them is made public? Everyone will agree with me that, we are apt to behave differently when we feel we are alone or watched.

In contrast, it’s also ideal for autocratic government in that it’s an extremely efficient form of power: authority doesn’t need to coerce folks physically to behave a certain way; surveillance inserts authority’s eye inside the individual, and he monitors himself. Surveillance enables power to be anonymous, Foucault says, which is especially devastating. You don’t know exactly why you are being watched, or exactly what’s expected of you, and ultimately cultivates a kind of inbred paranoia where you are unsure and timid about everything you do.

All I am saying is that, I don`t want to be under constant surveillance for no apparent or valid reason. At least let me know why am I being watched, elaborate what are these Cameras for? What are they used for? I don`t see their use because people get robbed, marked, killed on the same streets daily. I want freedom; freedom without privacy is no freedom at all. Firmin DeBrabander (2012) sums it up nicely and argued that “democracy requires creative, independent, fearless individualism”.

Alternately, as Boston College sociologist Juliet Schor has argued, we are a society increasingly suffering from ‘time poverty’: we work long hours, commute long distances, ferry our kids to and from countless activities, and in our frenzy, have come to rely on the multiple conveniences offered by the new technology that helps us get through our frantic schedules. In general, these new media are so fully integrated into our lives that we simply can’t imagine living without them. They have gotten us accustomed to levels of convenience such as we’ve never known before—a convenience directly proportionate to the amount personal information we surrender.

For more follow me on twitter @UNkosinathi

Or Visit my blog: www.nkosinathiisonpoint.wordpress.com

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
18 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Reggie Makgoba
The creative student

There is nothing more fulfilling to any teacher than seeing their students challenge the status quo and finding ways to contribute new ideas to a subject with passion. Read more...

0 comments 293 views
Submitted by
Kelvin Esiasa167
Social Injustices should be curbe...

I am writing this article at the backdrop of calamities that have been taking places around the globe and the South African xenophobia is one such an example Read more...

5 comments 314 views
Submitted by
Magda_Kus
Stop Hate/ Xenophobia/ Racism - I...

If you were driving past a scene of an accident, with no emergency services in sight, would you carry on driving saying "I did not cause that accident!" Read more...

4 comments 261 views
Submitted by
Puff
Bloodlust

This man had a mother. A father. He was perhaps a brother, a friend, a lover. This man had a purpose. He had a dream. He had a life. He had laughter and love and hope waiting for him. Read more...

6 comments 598 views
Submitted by
Andre Colling
The Saudis, Iran, Yemen and a bad...

Many conclude that Yemen is yet another step towards the cataclysmic sectarian war and , quite possibly, the trigger that leads the region to this ultimate battle. I, for one, can find no reason not to hold a similar position. Read more...

3 comments 639 views
Submitted by
Elaine Bing
Roots of xenophobia and genocide

We don’t want to live in a country that harms others and we need to all take on the responsibility of preventing further violence. Read more...

27 comments 504 views
 

services

E-mail Alerts The latest headlines in your inbox

RSS feeds News delivered really simply.

Mobile News24 on your mobile or PDA

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on your iPhone Get News24 headlines on your iPhone.

News24 on Android Get the latest from News24 on your Android device.

SMS Alerts Get breaking news stories via SMS.

Blogs Your opinion on you, me and everyone.

 
Interactive Advertising Bureau
 
© 2015 24.com. All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.