The Eyes of Brother

It never gets old, that feeling that someone, or something, is watching you as you work, and you get that shiver up and down your spine and across your shoulders when you think about it. I work in a workplace (my afternoon job working on web graphics and networking systems) that has at least Two security cameras per room, and the parking lot alone has over Ten cameras in it, all going 24/7, watching every movement within the confines of that space. No matter how much I try and ignore them, my mind keeps telling me that they are there, watching, recording, creeping me out.

Eyes on Us - small

One of the other employees, a woman who has been with the company for nearly a year (which is a veteran in terms of the age of the company) asked that she could have the camera above her work-station covered, or at least not pointed in her general direction. The employer, hardcore period freaks, who claim that they were ripped off blind not to long ago, but never could produce proof that they were indeed robbed, swear up and down that they needed them to deter crime.  She fired back arguing that the cameras were really there so that they could watch the staff while they, the employers, sat in their offices during the day. The employers denied this claim, but would not agree to turn them off the camera during work hours, then turned them back on after hours.

Later last week a petition started circulating by the workers that ask the employers to either move the cameras that were pointed at workstations, or have them covered up during the day. But, because I am a part-time employee, I never got to sign the document, but I did see a copy of it. Personally, I thought it would never fly. Having dealt with the British Columbian Government on Employee-Employer relations, I just assumed that the deck was heavily stacked against the employees. To my surprise, the offending cameras were removed yesterday.

I wish I knew the details, but a letter was issued to the employer by a Lawyer for the employees, and an action was taken against the workplace, and government, apparently. Only Five cameras were moved, but this was enough to make even me a little bit more relaxed while I worked.

I guess we must accept that we live in world were we are photographed multiple times every minute of every day as we go along our daily lives. Soon, we will have cameras, looking at the cameras looking at us, as we hide behind our masked, to at least having some form of privacy in our minds. But does privacy really exist? I hate to see Canada turn into some Orwellian State, but we all seem to agree with it in some form or another based on fear of crime, or keeping an eye on our interests.


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