The New York Times reported this week that the White House is on the verge of backing the FBI’s proposed plan to overhaul surveillance laws that would make it easier to wiretap Internet use, not just the traditional phone service. The FBI has long argued that surveillance laws need to catch up with the quickly advancing technology. But there are concerns about our privacy and freedom. ”I think the big change we need here is we have to apply the old laws to all the new contraptions,” Cycle co-host Ari Melber said.
One new contraption is Google Glass, which is a smartphone for your face. The glasses contain a processor with 16GB of storage, a bluetooth radio, a small battery, and can be controlled by voice commands, swipes, the tilting of your head, and even by blinking. Many people feel violated that a picture of them can be taken as they walk down the street. Some businesses have already banned Google Glass, including a Seattle Cafe and a Las Vegas Casino, because they see them as portable surveillance systems.
However, in the age where we can record anything with our smartphones, what privacy is left to be breached? “I’m not sure that we aren’t already there. Look at this election: the most influential moment was the 47% video surreptitiously recorded,” Cycle co-host Krystal Ball said. “I think we all sort of have to assume that we are on camera all the time, whether we want to be or whether we have agreed to be or not.”