November 09, 2009

"People act different behind cameras": strangely disturbing cartoon

Via Graham Linehan's blog and Techcrunch is This American Life examining our attitudes to censorship, citizen journalism and how people change when they're behind a camera.

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People have always acted like this, with or without a cardboard camera. Before cameras they relied on their brain to store the information for later. Nowadays they use phones, cameras, videos. Just a sign of the times. I remember gangs standing round goading on a fight in the playground 40 years ago. I remember seeing an accident and there were enough people already helping. If I had a camera at the time I could have taken a photo for evidence. As it was I hadn't a camera, and an insurance case was fought and lost. At great expense for all parties. A photo could have saved a lot of time and effort. There is a reason for everything, and some things will always be abused, and some things will bring great benefit. It depends on the people. And people will have to learn the results of their actions. I don't think they behave that much differently in front of a camera. I think they have always done rotten things, its just that the camera records it. Just like the camera recording the cardboard cameras recording the fight in the playground? Maybe raising awareness of the issues in the way your video does is one of the great ways of using tech. Good job.

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Ewan McIntosh is a teacher, speaker and investor, regarded as one of Europe’s foremost experts in digital media for public services.

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