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[P]
3G Camera Phones, Banned in Public Places?

By JDogg in Technology
Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 12:14:45 AM EST
Tags: Freedom (all tags)
Freedom

The growing popularity of 3G phones with built-in digital cameras are posing an interesting dilemma for health clubs by potentially threatening their member's privacy rights. A recent wired news article reports on the growing popularity of these camera phones, which have seen a 65% rise in global sales over the past quarter.

Some health club managers are becoming concerned that individuals are using these phones in workout areas and even in locker rooms to take unsuspecting photos of members. Is this an invasion of privacy, even though the pictures are being taken out in the open and in a public place?


I recently purchased the Sanyo 5300 Sprint PCS phone with a built-in camera. I admit I'm a sucker for new gadgets and enjoy sending photos back and forth with my brother who has the same phone. I've even found it useful in relaying pictures to my wife at work (I recently sent her pictures of steak knife sets from a local department store so she could help decide which one we would purchase). The quality is not nearly as good as what you would get from a megapixel digital camera, but it gets the job done. The issue of concern deals with the method in which I could take a picture of someone at close range and make it seem like I'm simply dialing my phone, or using the internet.

These health club rumors are leaving me a bit concerned that these gyms may ban these types of phones all-together. I take my phone to the gym whenever I go (sometimes I even make calls and do some business while I'm working out). Is it fair for these establishments to prohibit me from using my camera phone, even if I'm not taking pictures with it? I anticipate this issue will become more of a hot topic as the use of camera phones increase over the next few years.

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3G Camera Phones, Banned in Public Places? | 123 comments (115 topical, 8 editorial, 0 hidden)
"Public" Places (4.69 / 13) (#1)
by thelizman on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 12:08:06 PM EST

A health club is not a public place. It's a members only establishment. I pay to work out with self-absorbed yuppies, musclebound bikers, and the new years resolution crowds.
--

"Our language is sufficiently clumsy enough to allow us to believe foolish things." - George Orwell
members only (none / 0) (#2)
by JDogg on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 12:10:37 PM EST

True, but what about the rights of other members?


***It's like I'm Han Solo, you're Chewie, he's Ben Kenobi and we're in that FUCKED-UP BAR!!!***
-- Jay from Dogma
[ Parent ]
I think that's the point. (none / 0) (#111)
by vectro on Sun Mar 02, 2003 at 12:18:11 PM EST

Photo-taking may be restricted moreso than it might be in public areas, which a health club is not.

“The problem with that definition is just that it's bullshit.” -- localroger
[ Parent ]
"Public place" (5.00 / 3) (#3)
by ucblockhead on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 12:13:47 PM EST

If you go into a "24 hour Family Fitness Center", you will see signs saying something on the order of "all cameras and recording equipment are banned". The reason for this is because some guy in Southern California got caught taking hidden camera pictures in a mens locker room of one, the gym sued, and lost, because the judge handed down the astounding decision that a gym locker room was a "public place" so that there was "no expectation of privacy".

Sad, but true.

Because of this, gyms have to explicitly ban such things. But I suspect that the phones may already be banned by these gyms under existing rules, i.e., if the phone has a camera, it is a camera, and therefore banned. But it's an individual gym rule, not a law.
-----------------------
This is k5. We're all tools - duxup
[ Parent ]

Of course locker rooms are public (4.50 / 4) (#12)
by Hizonner on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 02:03:43 PM EST

[...] the judge handed down the astounding decision that a gym locker room was a "public place" so that there was "no expectation of privacy".

Sad, but true.

Why does that decision astound you, and why is it sad? A gym locker room is a public place, or at least a public accommodation. Anybody might be in there, and your activities there are visible to anybody. How could you have a reasonable expectation of privacy in a place open to, and usually occupied by, lots of complete strangers?

I'm really starting to worry about this privacy reflex that's cropping up these days. People are just assuming that they have a right to control, if not whether they're observed, at least whether their activities are recorded, and with whom that information is shared. This is a relatively new idea (not surprising, since the ability to record easily is also new). I haven't seen any real argument, and certainly not any particularly compelling argument, showing why it's a good idea to recognize such a right, but I've seen lots of people wanting to restrict the actions of others, including infringing on preestablished rights like freedom of speech, to enforce privacy.

I spent some time in the privacy industry, and I've spent a lot of time thinking about privacy issues and privacy rules. I used to be pretty strongly in the pro-privacy camp. I still have a lot of visceral sympathy for that camp... but I also have a lot of visceral sympathy for freedoms I see that camp attacking, and a lot of concerns about the effect on social and government institutions. Some really bad laws have been passed, and some moderately bad social conventions have been adopted.

I don't think the pro-privacy people have discharged their burden of proof... they haven't explained, fundamentally, why others should be restricted to protect their desire for privacy. The closest they come is a few easily answerable pragmatic arguments in financial and related situations.

So, what's the ethical theory behind wanting to make it illegal to take pictures in a locker room? Does that theory apply to the town square? Does it apply to observing the actions of public officials in the course of their duties? Does it apply to observation by public officials, and, if not, why are they special? Where does it not apply? Does the same argument apply to other similar issues, like say the desire to control whether your Net postings are archived?

[ Parent ]

privacy (5.00 / 1) (#14)
by ucblockhead on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 02:08:09 PM EST

Would you shower at a gym that replaced the wall of the shower with a plate glass window to the street?

If not, why not?
-----------------------
This is k5. We're all tools - duxup
[ Parent ]

I Would (3.66 / 6) (#15)
by thelizman on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 02:13:33 PM EST

I just spent 5 months in an environment where you are forced to shower naked with a platoon of strangers. At first everyone huddles in their own corner, but by the time I left basic training, I thought nothing of strolling butt-assed naked across the squad bay, into the latrine, then into the showers, free-ballin the entire way with my towl over my shoulder.

Some people might even get off on the idea. The sheer size of modern cities insulates a person in anonymity anyway. Unless you're princess di, you won't car.

Oh wait, she's dead, she doesn't care anyway.
--

"Our language is sufficiently clumsy enough to allow us to believe foolish things." - George Orwell
[ Parent ]
You've been back to high school then? (nt) (4.00 / 1) (#16)
by Pac on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 02:18:37 PM EST


Evolution doesn't take prisoners


[ Parent ]
Why, yes, I would (3.50 / 2) (#18)
by Hizonner on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 02:24:23 PM EST

In fact, I'd probably seek out that gym, just for the chance to yank people's chains. 1/2 :-) However, I understand that I'm unusual.

I recognize the existence of the nudity taboo. I find it amusing that people who were willing to shower with groups of strangers would suddenly get weird about showering in front of a window, but I know the phenomenon exists.

I understand that people have issues around this. People also have issues around their privacy in places other than locker rooms or showers, so it's not just a nudity thing.

The question is whether, and more importantly how, those reactions justify restricting the actions of others, and using the force of law to enforce those restrictions. Answering that requires real ethical analysis... which your question is not.

[ Parent ]

sex (4.00 / 3) (#24)
by ucblockhead on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 03:31:06 PM EST

It's the sex issue...people, especially women, don't want to be seen in front of random strangers of the same sex.

It's amusing, really...I used to go to a trendy gym called "Crunch" in San Francisco. Half the showers had frosted glass facing the stairs up to the locker rooms for both sexes. Lights were strategically placed to throw a silhouette of the occuppent on the glass, out into the public area of the gym. These were always the last stalls taken, even though the projected shadows were basically anonymous.

But anyway, like it or not, laws enforce social mores. And culturally speaking, people feel that locker rooms are not "public places" the way a space in front of a plate glass window is.

Laws are balancing rights...which is the more important right, the right of people to have some control over their whether or not other people see them naked, or the right of people to see other people naked. Or put another way, which "right" has more priority, my right to see you naked if I desire, or your right to decide who you appear naked to?

Whether or not it is "logical" to worry about being seen naked is not the point, no more than the right to free speech can be thrown out the window because it allows people to say stupid things.
-----------------------
This is k5. We're all tools - duxup
[ Parent ]

Not just sex (4.83 / 6) (#39)
by Hizonner on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 05:42:20 PM EST

I've reordered the quotes below.
Whether or not it is "logical" to worry about being seen naked is not the point,
Did I say it was? No value judgement can ever be "logical", anyway... which doesn't mean that value judgements aren't worth making, or don't need to be made.

My point is that there really hasn't been a satisfactory debate over to what degree privacy should be socially recognized (let alone legally recognized) as a right, or which of the many possible degrees and kinds of privacy should qualify, or how it should be enforced.

Yes, there are some pretty old customs, but they don't really cover the whole space of privacy, and the conditions that created them have changed anyway. Not only has there been social change, but we now have unprecedentedly cheap, ubiquitous, unobtrusive surveillance and recording devices. Such an enormous technological change is bound to have some significant social implications.

Look at the right to free speech. It's been discussed every which way. There've been huge arguments over whether it exists, why it's important, where its boundaries should lie. There's a whole body of theory and discourse about it. The right to privacy, if there is one, is not nearly so well studied, but people are running around making rules about it anyway.

That's to be expected; people aren't going to wait for a question to be settled before trying to impose their own views. On the contrary, they're going to try to get their views put into every possible law and custom, because the first laws and customs themselves will influence the ones that come afterward. However, the fact that people will do this doesn't make it a good thing, or something to be encouraged.

I'd like to see a real discussion of the personal and social costs and benefits of the various viewpoints, and I haven't seen one. For example, the right to free speech is generally believed to have social value extending beyond its value to any individual speaker, because it serves to improve the whole society in various ways. Does the right to privacy have social value beyond its value to the person who is not observed? What are the negative social aspects of privacy itself? Assuming that privacy itself does have a net positive social value, do the measures that might be used to enforce privacy have other, non-privacy effects that are negative?

Nudity is actually a crummy issue for me to be picking on, because the social value of letting just anybody photograph anybody naked is probably pretty small, whereas the distress involved might be relatively large. The case for privacy looks relatively strong here. Even so, it seems to me that even locker-room photography, absent an announced rule to the contrary, should be accepted... and even that one should be careful about what rules one makes in such a situation.

Or put another way, which "right" has more priority, my right to see you naked if I desire, or your right to decide who you appear naked to?
Well, no, actually. If you had a right to see me naked, you could order me to strip any time.

The real question is, once I have decided, of my own free will, to be naked in your sight, in a place open to the public, without saying a word about what you could or could not do, do I still have a right, not merely to object or be annoyed, but to use the force of law against you, should you take and distribute a picture? The question isn't whether you can see me naked; I've already consented to that. In fact, by being naked in the locker room, I've already consented to have essentially any male who may wander in, and perhaps the occasional female with a good reason to be there, see me naked. The only question is whether you can record me naked.

I tend to believe that the law should be reserved for really, really egregious behavior, and should be applied only when there's no alternative. Furthermore, I think it's a very important principle that people should know what they're forbidden to do. I don't think it's unreasonable to at least expect the club to put up a sign if it wants to prohibit photography, and I don't think it's "astounding" or "sad" if a judge applies such a minimal requirement.

It's the sex issue...people, especially women, don't want to be seen in front of random strangers of the same sex.
Do you mean "other sex", rather than "same sex"? 'Cause if they don't want to be seen by random strangers of the same sex, they probably shouldn't be in a locker room...

The "amateur" pictures taken in the men's locker room were probably sold mostly to other men; the gay male porn market seems to be larger than the het female market. Most of the porn customers could probably have walked into the locker room itself. So perhaps it isn't so much a question of who sees you, but under what circumstances they see you and what their, um, state of mind is when they see you.

In my experience, people don't like the idea of being photographed secretly, whether they're naked or not. I'm not sure of all the reasons for that. Maybe it's because there's no "level playing field"; being seen without seeing is bound to unnerve anybody whose distant ancestors had to deal with predators. Maybe it's because they feel they need to know when to keep their guards up; the Rules require you to act differently when other people are watching. Especially in the case of nude pictures, maybe they don't like the idea of strangers masturbating over pictures of them. I suspect it's a mixture of all of these.

I'm not sure even the nudity part is entirely a sex issue, although I agree that that's part of it, and that, especially for women, there's a real concern about male sexual aggression. I think there are also questions of ego, plain old habit, and probably other things, too.

By the way, since we're trading locker room stories, I sometimes go to a day spa that has separate men's and women's locker rooms. Everybody, both sexes, walks out of those locker rooms into a common area, buck naked. The place is supposedly clothing-optional, but I've never seen a single customer of either sex who had a stitch on. I suppose it may happen, but it's awfully rare if it does. So why do they have separate rooms? It can't be just about being seen nude.

[ Parent ]

Awesome gym! (5.00 / 7) (#58)
by tang gnat on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 03:27:36 AM EST

Even if you care about privacy, like you said, it's anonymous! If you go to that gym again, make sure to enter the silhouette shower, and then masturbate like a monkey. Or, bring a buddy along and re-inact that scene in Austin Powers 2 with the shadows on the tent!

[ Parent ]
But. (4.00 / 1) (#103)
by Politburo on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 03:59:33 PM EST

When you shower with other people, they are also naked. So there is an equality in the situation. When you shower in front of a window to the street, clothed people get to see you naked. Now you have an unabalanced situation. It's not the same thing.

[ Parent ]
wow. (4.00 / 4) (#31)
by Estanislao Martínez on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 04:55:22 PM EST

...some guy in Southern California got caught taking hidden camera pictures in a mens locker room of one, the gym sued, and lost, because the judge handed down the astounding decision that a gym locker room was a "public place" so that there was "no expectation of privacy".

God, this is such bullshit. IIRC you're not in general allowed to take a picture of a person in any circumstance where there is a "reasonable expectation of privacy"; it's one of those things you have to read up on when you do street photography.

But apparently this case you mention is not unique. The Washington state Supreme Court threw out two sentences on men who practiced upskirt photography, on the ground that the women were in public places, and thus had no reasonable expectation of privacy. Quite fucked up logic, IMHO; the decision talks as if expectation of privacy were an absolute rather than relative thing. If a person is nude in a public place, this person can't have a reasonable expectation that their nude picture can't be taken; however, a woman with should have a reasonable expectation not to have some guy go out of his way to point a miniature camera up her skirt. That is, clothing by convention is intended to reveal only so much; if the voyeur can only achieve the shots by adopting an unconventional and invasive technique, it should be a violation of privacy.

--em
[ Parent ]

Ah, found a paper. (none / 0) (#35)
by Estanislao Martínez on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 05:04:17 PM EST

Re-Thinking Privacy: Peeping Toms, Video Voyeurs and the Failure of Criminal Law to Recognize a Reasonable Expectation of Privacy in the Public Space

--em
[ Parent ]

Important quote (none / 0) (#61)
by rdskutter on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 05:17:30 AM EST

This is from the paper in the parent:

In fact, the body is the locus of our most powerful expectation of privacy. The ability to determine when, to what degree, to whom, and under what circumstances the body is exposed, as argued above, is among the most fundamental aspects of the right to privacy and deeply tied to the concept of human dignity.


Yanks are like ICBMs: Good to have on your side, but dangerous to have nearby. - OzJuggler
History will be kind to me for I intend to write it.[ Parent ]

That's crap. (none / 0) (#77)
by BCoates on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 06:18:42 PM EST

The ability to control who sees what parts of my skin is one of the most trivial and peripheral aspects of a right to privacy.  I would be much more upset if someone were recording me in my home fully clothed, or listening to a private phone call, or getting access to my financial or medical records, than if someone merely took some photographs of me showering or something.

In fact, given the choice between someone surreptiously taking pictures of me for some pervert to leer at later and having the actual pervert there staring while I'm trying to shower or something, I'd take the former.

--
Benjamin Coates

[ Parent ]

well... (none / 0) (#51)
by Danse on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 07:29:53 PM EST

Seems to me that if you're walking around naked where people can see you, there's not all the much privacy to begin with.






An honest debate between Bush and Kerry
[ Parent ]
Self-absorbed yuppies? (4.16 / 6) (#6)
by 8ctavIan on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 01:08:41 PM EST

You mean like the ones who send pictures of steak knives to their wives via mobile phone? (Sorry, I couldn't resist that crack)


Injustice is relatively easy to bear; what stings is justice. -- H.L. Mencken
[ Parent ]

Well... (none / 0) (#89)
by Jim Dabell on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 06:21:48 AM EST

I pay to work out with self-absorbed yuppies, musclebound bikers, and the new years resolution crowds.

Which category do you fall into then?



[ Parent ]
The gym... (3.60 / 5) (#4)
by aziegler on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 12:29:13 PM EST

that I belong to "strongly recommends" that patrons be courteous to each other and NOT use the phone while exercising.

-austin

Amusingly (4.28 / 7) (#8)
by Craevenwulfe on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 01:20:54 PM EST

The Japanese camera phones now all make an announcement when they take a picture. This is due to the fact that too many perverts were using them to take very dubious pictures.

As an aside Megapixel cameras are pegged for next year.

camera noise (5.00 / 2) (#9)
by JDogg on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 01:24:46 PM EST

Incidentally, my phone came defaulted with an annoying shutter noise that sounded when I took a picture. I quickly disabled that.


***It's like I'm Han Solo, you're Chewie, he's Ben Kenobi and we're in that FUCKED-UP BAR!!!***
-- Jay from Dogma
[ Parent ]
Saw this on the tube in Tokyo (none / 0) (#62)
by Gully Foyle on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 06:33:00 AM EST

Although, the guy didn't take any pictures. He was happily just using the phone's LCD viewfinder.

If you weren't picked on in school you were doing something wrong - kableh
[ Parent ]

Integration has it's drawbacks. (4.75 / 8) (#10)
by jabber on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 01:52:20 PM EST

It's not the phones that are being banned, it's the cameras. And they're being banned from places where cameras would be disallowed in the first place. The invasion of privacy is on part of people bringing cameras - integrated into phones or as dedicated devices - into places where a reasonable degree of privacy is presumed. This makes perfect sense.

As soon as Nokia comes out with an "Urban Security" model of cell phone, which will integrate a taser (for personal protection) into the body of the phone, you will see the devices banned from places like court rooms, and even public spaces where such devices (tasers) are not permitted. And it will make perfect sense to do so as well.

The integration of devices is a good thing, however, integrated devices should be held to the tighter of available regulations. Rules should consider integrated devices fully, and consider all their available functions, not just a limited aspect of them. It makes more sense to err on the side of caution here.

[TINK5C] |"Is K5 my kapusta intellectual teddy bear?"| "Yes"

Integration (none / 0) (#54)
by Bad Harmony on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 10:10:21 PM EST

It's already happened. I was called up for jury duty recently. Besides the usual prohibitions on weapons and cameras, they also prohibited any cell phone that had an audio recording feature, which is a common feature on current models.

54º40' or Fight!
[ Parent ]

Trivially circumvented (4.00 / 1) (#55)
by acceleriter on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 10:43:59 PM EST

. . . they also prohibited any cell phone that had an audio recording feature . . .

1. Visit Men's room.

2. Call home, where home already has phone connected to recorder (or line in to a PC with a sound card).

3. Enter the courtroom, and have not only an audio record, but an off-site audio record.

[ Parent ]

Re: (none / 0) (#120)
by ultimai on Tue Mar 04, 2003 at 02:49:46 PM EST

How long did that take for you to think up?

[ Parent ]
Taser cell phone?! (none / 0) (#68)
by gt2313a on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 12:31:15 PM EST

I would like to remotely activate their taser when they are talking on the phone in public.  

But really, won't this lead to a lot of accidental self-tasings?  But hmmm...tase yourself enough, you might just win the darwin award...

[ Parent ]

Maybe (none / 0) (#110)
by trane on Sun Mar 02, 2003 at 05:14:00 AM EST

They could make the different functions of the device disable-able (if that is a word) via removal of a hardware key or chip or some such thing.

[ Parent ]
i agree (3.71 / 7) (#11)
by tps12 on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 01:56:41 PM EST

If I belonged to a gym, I wouldn't want people taking pictures of my member either.

wear a towel (nt) (3.00 / 2) (#33)
by dr k on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 05:00:05 PM EST


Destroy all trusted users!
[ Parent ]
But... (none / 0) (#53)
by carbon on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 08:59:46 PM EST

Will the towel protect your precious members from harmful cell phone cancer radiation? Huh, will it, huh?


Wasn't Dr. Claus the bad guy on Inspector Gadget? - dirvish
[ Parent ]
Cameras in the hands of the public are good (4.66 / 6) (#13)
by pw201 on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 02:04:19 PM EST

As I've mentioned in Another Place, much of the concern about the increasing number of CCTV cameras in the UK is because they enable Them (the government, law enforcement) to watch Us (ordinary folk). When everyone has a camera, everyone can watch everyone, so cheap and ubiquitous cameras in the hands of ordinary citizens are a good thing. Or at least, as David Brin argues, they are better than the other alternative. Brin's Kil'n People is set in a world where public cameras are commonplace: it's an interesting read.

That said, it seems obvious to me that a changing room is not a public place in the same sense as a street or park is. For instance, we conventionally do not allow members of one sex to walk into changing rooms of the opposite sex.

in all of david brins works ppl have cameras (none / 0) (#66)
by auraslip on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 10:43:09 AM EST

not just iln people. In fact he wrote a whole book about it.
124
[ Parent ]
Not all, but many, at least. (none / 0) (#70)
by pb on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 01:42:37 PM EST

For example, I thought it was done well in Earth, but you'll notice that it's completely absent from The Practice Effect.  However, the parent comment was just talking about one book in the first place, not everything Brin ever wrote.
---
"See what the drooling, ravening, flesh-eating hordes^W^W^W^WKuro5hin.org readers have to say."
-- pwhysall
[ Parent ]
Dear God (4.33 / 12) (#17)
by riceowlguy on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 02:20:47 PM EST

I'd like to say that this is a typical American reaction to a small problem but unfortunately just about every other Western country does the exact same shit. Let us generalize this:

  1. Somebody comes up with a device that has great practical application and is fun to use for millions of people.
  2. Some small percentage of the people, who are total fuckheads, start using the device for bad purposes.
  3. Most people don't really give much of a shit, but another small percentage gets a bee up their asses and decides to campaign tirelessly to have these "dangerous and corrupting" devices banned.
  4. Politicians/policymakers, who are too spineless to tell the vocal minority to shut the fuck up, or just like controlling things themselves anyway, go ahead and ban them.

Note how this can be generalized to things like firearms, fireworks, skateboards, etc. The list goes on and on.

Other cultures don't have this sort of thing. In certain rural Mexican villages, during certain fiestas, children as well as adults are seen running around with fireworks, inside cages of fireworks, having firework fights, etc. And you don't have the local chapter of Concerned Busybody Mothers saying "won't somebody please think of the children?"

Okay, so I just wanted to rant about our "let's legislate a totally danger/unhappiness-free society" culture. My point is that they could very well just ban using the cameras to take pictures, rather than banning the phones themselves.

"We influence the member..members...oh dear." - Celia in the Rice Light Opera Society 2003 production of Iolan

firearms? (4.00 / 4) (#21)
by vivelame on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 02:38:01 PM EST

firearms, "great practical application and is fun to use for millions of people."?
I guess if you want to have fun while firing an assault rifle at living moving targets, you can always join the marines: it's not banned, it's even encouraged, here.


--
Jonathan Simon: "When the autopsy of our democracy is performed, it is my belief that media silence will be given as the primary cause of death."
[ Parent ]
Assault rifles (3.83 / 6) (#27)
by riceowlguy on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 04:15:46 PM EST

1) Have great practical application
For some things, like varmint hunting, an off-the-shelf AR-15 is a great tool. They are also good self-defense tools (a shotgun would be better, though), and they are pretty much the gold standard for high-power rifle competition (although I am willing to conceed that that is pretty much a function of the way the competitions are set up).

2) Are fun for millions of people
Shooting semi-automatic rifles at targets for accuracy or just plinking is a lot of fun. Millions of people do it.

And yes, ladies and gentlemen, I am in fact making the argument that it is dumb to infringe upon the ability of a large number of people (millions) to defend themselves and/or have fun in order to save a few lives (the number of people murdered every year with assault rifles). Particularly when there isn't a lot of convincing evidence that a) banning such weapons keep them out of the hands of criminals or b) that they coudln't be killed just as easily with other weapons.

"We influence the member..members...oh dear." - Celia in the Rice Light Opera Society 2003 production of Iolan
[ Parent ]

i think the same logic (2.50 / 2) (#57)
by vivelame on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 03:12:29 AM EST

applies to drugs (soft and hard), then: they're fun, and have great practical application.
And let's not forget WoMD, which are fun as hell too, and have great practical applications :-)
Anthrax for everyone!

--
Jonathan Simon: "When the autopsy of our democracy is performed, it is my belief that media silence will be given as the primary cause of death."
[ Parent ]
Okay, see (5.00 / 1) (#69)
by riceowlguy on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 12:59:04 PM EST

now I don't know if you're being sarcastic or not. 'Cause I'd certainly agree with you on the drugs issue (although there are some other more compelling arguments for decriminalzation/legalization). I guess I'll take your grin for a sign that you're joking about the WoMD.

"We influence the member..members...oh dear." - Celia in the Rice Light Opera Society 2003 production of Iolan
[ Parent ]

food for thoughts. (none / 0) (#71)
by vivelame on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 01:53:35 PM EST

i do agree on the drugs issue, with a caveat: if you fall ill because of drgus abuse (like throath cancer, or whatever), you kiss goodbye any healthcare.
As of WoMD, well.. a similar case can be made: US citizen can own a gun to defend themselves against an evil government. Maybe all countries should be allowed WoMD to defend against an evil imperialist empire, or whatever.


--
Jonathan Simon: "When the autopsy of our democracy is performed, it is my belief that media silence will be given as the primary cause of death."
[ Parent ]
For the record (none / 0) (#72)
by riceowlguy on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 02:02:37 PM EST

I've never agreed with my country's "We can have nukes but you guys can't" rule. Either we get rid of them all or we keep them. Right now I vote keep.

"We influence the member..members...oh dear." - Celia in the Rice Light Opera Society 2003 production of Iolan
[ Parent ]

Exactly (none / 0) (#78)
by BCoates on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 06:39:11 PM EST

i do agree on the drugs issue, with a caveat: if you fall ill because of drgus abuse (like throath cancer, or whatever), you kiss goodbye any healthcare.

And this, of course, is why socialized health care is a bad thing.

--
Benjamin Coates

[ Parent ]

Why is drug-abuse so different? (none / 0) (#105)
by xL on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 06:27:54 PM EST

I mean, is the dope fiend that much different from the obsessive fathead gluttoning himself at McDonald's or the alcoholic wrecking his liver with cheap Scotch? I think they are a bigger burden on healthcare already, yet the insurance companies keep paying up.

[ Parent ]
Isn't that true (none / 0) (#28)
by SleepDirt on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 04:35:42 PM EST

That's a pretty damn accurate sumation of how things work here.

"In a closed society where everybody's guilty, the only crime is getting caught. In a world of thieves, the only final sin is stupidity." - Hunter S. Thompson
[ Parent ]
Galumph galumph! [n/t] (5.00 / 2) (#36)
by it certainly is on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 05:06:09 PM EST



kur0shin.org -- it certainly is

Godwin's law [...] is impossible to violate except with an infinitely long thread that doesn't mention nazis.
[ Parent ]

Fireworks in Mexico.... (none / 0) (#44)
by Tezcatlipoca on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 06:34:59 PM EST

Are banned. If you saw recently what you say you saw it is not because it is allowed, it is because many local authorities in Mexico are very incompetent (including Mexico City, which during Xmas and New Year was absolutely unbearable where I was staying).

And yes, the ban was brought forward amongst others by concerned mothers (and fathers) of children that used to suffer horrific injuries during the festive season.

Actually when you intend to handle any sizeable amount of gunpowder you have to register your business and the gunpowder with the Minstery of Defense (i.e. the army).

Might is right

[ Parent ]

I didn't see it personally (5.00 / 1) (#45)
by riceowlguy on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 06:44:57 PM EST

I took a photography course from one Geoff Winningham who did a book called In The Eye Of The Sun, which was mainly photos of The Day of the Dead as celebrated in various towns and villages. It was going to be called El Rastro de Maravillas, which would have been perfect given the double meaning of Maravillas, but the publisher canned that because it was for an English-speaking audience.

Anyway, he took all his photos in the early nineties I believe, so it may have been pre-ban. Or, since this was mostly in small towns, they might just not have given a shit.

Would you care to comment on what my teacher referred to as the Zapotec belief that there is a proper balance to be struck between chaos (danger) and order (safety), and too much of either is a bad thing, as opposed to the American belief that the more safety the better?

"We influence the member..members...oh dear." - Celia in the Rice Light Opera Society 2003 production of Iolan
[ Parent ]

Zapotecs... (none / 0) (#47)
by Tezcatlipoca on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 07:04:29 PM EST

... are not my tribe ;-) but I have to agree with that pearl of wisdom.

Might is right

[ Parent ]
its just a social issue as cell phones once were (4.50 / 2) (#20)
by gps on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 02:27:42 PM EST

The widespread availability and use of cameras attached to cell phones is nothing more than the next generation of new devices that will soon become cheap, common and ubiquitous.

its a social problem if they are being used incorrectly (just like the idiot jabbing loudly on the phone in the restuarant or the ringing phone in the theater).  let it exist for a few years and social structure will figure it out by shunning those who obviously take photos in inappropriate places.

so you have a camera in the locker room?  so what, tons of other people will as well and who exactly do you think is going to sit there and sort thru the myriad of boring low quality ugly locker room photos to find yours?  if someone actually -cared- enough to be out to get you like that a silly law preventing cameras in locker rooms would not prevent a camera from finding its way in there to photograph you.

What about the wrist watch camera that has been around for a couple years already.

(+1 FP)

Jammers (2.33 / 3) (#22)
by sllort on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 02:45:10 PM EST

Why aren't theatres, clubs, and other "private" areas employing cell jammers en masse? Are jammers illegal to manufacture? Is is the "what if someone can't call 911" liability? Has no capitalist jumped on the opportunity yet? Personally I'd like to buy one for my home and one for my car, at the very least.
--
Warning: On Lawn is a documented liar.
Illegal in the US (none / 0) (#23)
by Sikpup on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 02:55:53 PM EST

FCC rules prohibit active interference with transmitted signals, deliberate or unintentional.

Now a theater should be faraday caged, thus preventing the rf energy from entering the building. That would be perfectly legal - but setting up a system to deliberately jam cell phones from operating would not be. (In my experience the only thing more annoying than someone taking a call during a movie is the idiot who lets it keep ringing and hasn't turned it to vibrate).

As for the gym/club issue, jamming wouldn't work against the camera anyway - the image would still be stored in the camera/phone and could be distributed later.


[ Parent ]

Hmm. (none / 0) (#29)
by valeko on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 04:37:53 PM EST

Now a theater should be faraday caged, thus preventing the rf energy from entering the building.

That's a good idea, except that as soon as someone dies because everyone had a cell phone but nobody could call the medical authorities, there's going to be a big lawsuit or even criminal case.

"Hey, what's sanity got going for it anyways?" -- infinitera, on matters of the heart
[ Parent ]

Gee (4.71 / 7) (#32)
by evilpenguin on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 05:00:04 PM EST

I, for one, would think that a theater which employs such advanced technologies as 100-channel THX sound systems and digital film distribution would at least have a land line or two.

There's a reason why you see payphones in the lobby. I'm sure if there was such a medical emergency, one or two people could manage to get out and dial 911 on the payphone. People who leave their cell phones on during movies, in clubs, theaters and classes should be promptly bludgeoned when it rings. Rude fucks.
--
# nohup cat /dev/dsp > /dev/hda & killall -9 getty
[ Parent ]
I 100% agree. (4.33 / 3) (#34)
by valeko on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 05:03:11 PM EST

But that doesn't mean there wouldn't be a lawsuit somewhere. ("Oh, if we only didn't take the 3 seconds to run into the lobby, he would have lived.")

"Hey, what's sanity got going for it anyways?" -- infinitera, on matters of the heart
[ Parent ]

I wonder (none / 0) (#37)
by evilpenguin on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 05:26:59 PM EST

For a claim like that to hold up in court, there would need to be testimony by an expert (doctor) establishing or defeating it's veracity. The former seems to be extremely unlikely, and they could probably avoid the whole thing by putting up clear, visable notices in the box office ("cellular phone use restricted within premises, mgnt not resp, plz dnt sue k? thnx."). Though they would still most likely just settle out of court to avoid publicity.

Still, for that $9.50 ticket, I don't want to hear some prick talking on his portable cancer machine.
--
# nohup cat /dev/dsp > /dev/hda & killall -9 getty
[ Parent ]
what $9.50 can buy (none / 0) (#41)
by dr k on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 06:11:58 PM EST

Why does $9.50 entitle you to a prick-free environment? Pricks have money, too. Maybe a gun would be a better solution for you.


Destroy all trusted users!
[ Parent ]

Hmmm (none / 0) (#48)
by borful on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 07:05:40 PM EST

What kind of gun is available for $9.50?

-borful
Money is how people with no talent keep score.
[ Parent ]
A few shotgun shells, pair of pliers and a hammer. (4.00 / 3) (#49)
by evilpenguin on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 07:11:08 PM EST


--
# nohup cat /dev/dsp > /dev/hda & killall -9 getty
[ Parent ]
Hmmm.... (none / 0) (#109)
by cei on Sun Mar 02, 2003 at 04:19:01 AM EST

Granted, last time I worked with digital cinema was last summer for Star Wars Ep II, but the distribution method at the time was more often than not either A) 16 DVD-Rs (the movie clocked in at 68 GB); B) DLT; or C) a Boeing sattelite sending the image that was probably then dumped to DVD-Rs.

[ Parent ]
Really difficult to do. (none / 0) (#25)
by Work on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 04:11:10 PM EST

It would have to be a selective jammer - ie block everything BUT 911 calls and the like. The legality of such thing is pretty gray, and would undoubtedly be very very expensive (and difficult to manage... how do you keep it from extending beyond your own building?)

[ Parent ]
And? (none / 0) (#50)
by Danse on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 07:20:16 PM EST

That wouldn't make a bit of difference with the camera issue.






An honest debate between Bush and Kerry
[ Parent ]
Also illegal in Canada (none / 0) (#93)
by metalfan on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 11:40:40 AM EST

Under the Radiocommunications Act, it is an offence to interfere or obstruct ANY radiocommunications without lawful excuse.

Unfortunately, that includes the idiots who let their cell phones ring for half an hour in the movie theater.



[ Parent ]
i saw a digital camera the other day... (4.37 / 8) (#26)
by Work on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 04:14:44 PM EST

that is literally a keychain camera. Its roughly the size of a remote entry keyfob and doesnt look much different. It has a little chain which to attach to the rest of your keys. The quality was 640x480, which is probably as good as any phone camera.

Will they start banning keychains as well?

Welcome to tomorrow, folks. Digital camera technology fits anywhere and everywhere for cheap. Its just something we'll have to learn to live with.

L'Espion (none / 0) (#60)
by DaveMe on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 04:45:44 AM EST

Most probably, that was a "L'Espion". Ccmes at about 30 Euro, connect via USB.

[ Parent ]
not that one... (none / 0) (#79)
by Work on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 08:07:45 PM EST

im trying to find it, but having a difficult time. It was slightly larger than a quarter (i think it held a compactflash memory card, which was its main size limit).

It didn't have a lcd display, zoom capability or anything like that. Just a lens and memory card holder and a snapshot button.

[ Parent ]

In Japan (4.60 / 5) (#30)
by LukeyBoy on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 04:44:48 PM EST

In Japan, all of the camera-enabled phones (mainly from JPhone) are required to make a very loud shutter noise every time a photo is taken, specifically for the reasons you've cited.

Perhaps that works in Japan (5.00 / 2) (#46)
by Control Group on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 06:45:46 PM EST

And perhaps it would work for a while in various other places, but I simply can't see it being truly effective everywhere over the long-term. What it does is completely prevent your average person from taking pictures in the locker room - but then, your average person is probably courteous enough to not do so in the first place.

The dedicated person, who makes money putting real "voyeur cam" pics on the web will find a way to have a camera that makes no such noise.

Just like people in North America who have sufficient desire to play Region 2 DVDs manage to do so, the entertainment industry and the law notwithstanding.

***
"Oh, nothing. It just looks like a simple Kung-Fu Swedish Rastafarian Helldemon."
[ Parent ]

Absolutely (none / 0) (#67)
by LukeyBoy on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 11:34:33 AM EST

I never claimed it worked. Covering the speaker with a little strip of rubber tape would do the trick nicely I'm sure.

[ Parent ]
Which law... (none / 0) (#91)
by ti dave on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 07:15:35 AM EST

is the law that precludes me from playing Region 2 discs, here in the U.S., on my multi-region player?

Endorsed by the American Taliban Association
[ Parent ]

I don't know the exact law. (none / 0) (#94)
by ethereal on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 01:09:31 PM EST

But they've heard of it here at the local Best Buy as well. Funny what people will believe, huh?

--

Stand up for your right to not believe: Americans United for Separation of Church and State
[ Parent ]

The law banning multi-region DVD players in the US (5.00 / 1) (#104)
by pin0cchio on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 06:13:03 PM EST

The law that bans making or purchasing a multi-region DVD player is contract law plus the DMCA. Anybody under contract with DVD CCA can't make or sell a multi-region player, and under current Second Circuit interpretation of Title 17, United States Code, Section 1201, anybody not under contract with DVD CCA can't make or sell a CSS compatible player.


lj65
[ Parent ]
Then I'll import one... (none / 0) (#107)
by ti dave on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 11:05:47 PM EST

And since I don't live in the 2nd Circuit, I don't particularly care about their decisions.

Endorsed by the American Taliban Association
[ Parent ]

Can't import one either (none / 0) (#112)
by pin0cchio on Sun Mar 02, 2003 at 04:13:03 PM EST

17 USC 1201(a)(2) states: "No person shall manufacture, import, offer to the public, provide, or otherwise traffic in any technology, product, service, device, component, or part thereof, that" decodes CSS-encrypted DVDs without permission (my emphasis).

And since I don't live in the 2nd Circuit, I don't particularly care about their decisions.

Second Circuit decisions are not strictly binding on courts in other circuits, but courts in other circuits do often rely on other circuits' interpretations of federal statutes.


lj65
[ Parent ]
Yeah, I saw that part already. (none / 0) (#115)
by ti dave on Mon Mar 03, 2003 at 12:59:21 AM EST

I'll die with my boots on, like a free man, thank you.

Endorsed by the American Taliban Association
[ Parent ]

audio streaming over 3G (3.16 / 6) (#38)
by akb on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 05:27:36 PM EST

Not entirely on topic but I thought I'd relate an experience I had originating an mp3 stream using a 3G phone for DC Indymedia. The audiocast was listened to by about 50 people at peak as well as picked up at points by two full power FM stations with potential audiences in the tens of thousands.

The event was the Sorry State of the Union that was held concurrent with Bush's State of the Union Address in front of the Capitol, by the reflecting pool.

If you know that area you'll know that its on the Mall, so basically just a grass field. The organizers had a generator for power, so we didn't have to worry about batteries, but they weren't able to get any landlines put in like we normally use for our webcasts. So we got a 3G phone and figured we return it within the 15 day grace period (otherwise there's a 2 year contract). It was cold but an enormous amount of fun. Good satire of Bush, serious speeches against the war, the official Green Party response, and lots of great music.

We had people upload pictures from the rally while it was going on and were on irc with people listening to our audio stream. I thought it was a pretty powerful demonstration of what wireless can do. It dropped out occassionally and it performed like a 56k modem (i didn't see any "bursts up to 140kbps") but we wouldn't have been able to do it at all otherwise.

For more info on how things went see here

Collaborative Video Blog demandmedia.net

Buy an ad. Jeez. nt (3.25 / 4) (#43)
by kitten on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 06:23:45 PM EST


mirrorshades radio - darkwave, synthpop, industrial, futurepop.
[ Parent ]
Standards (1.00 / 1) (#80)
by davidduncanscott on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 11:21:00 PM EST

So we got a 3G phone and figured we return it within the 15 day grace period
Low budget is one thing, but that sounds unethical. Couldn't you have simply taped the event? Frankly it diminishes your credibility that you would have lied about appraising the phone service in order to tell the truth -- an hour sooner.

[ Parent ]
live radio (5.00 / 1) (#81)
by akb on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 12:45:03 AM EST

That's what the grace period is for, to give people a chance to try it.  Now based on our experience one of the people involved in the project is writing a grant to fund a mobile webcasting setup including 3G service.

As for timeliness, we fed full power FM stations in NYC and Houston, they wanted it live.  Bush gets carried live, so someone must think live coverage is important for some reason.  If Bush gets to be live, why not a satire of his big event, some good local bands and the official Green Party response to Bush?  Anyway, with no land lines we didn't really have other options.  

Remote setups for radio at events can cost a few thousand dollars, that's how much live coverage is valued.  They wanted live coverage and had no budget, we used borrowed equipment (mixer, mics, cables, laptop, tables, chairs, etc) and our total expenses were $40 (for 15 days of 3G service).

So, given all that, I am able to sleep at night.

Collaborative Video Blog demandmedia.net
[ Parent ]

Try it,, yes (1.00 / 1) (#82)
by davidduncanscott on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 12:57:11 AM EST

but the term "grace period" certainly implies that you might change your mind and regret your purchase, not that you never intended to keep the phone in the first place.

No, I wouldn't expect you to lose sleep over it, but I'm guessing that the salesman whose commission is taken back might not vote Green next time.

[ Parent ]

Not a public place! (4.50 / 8) (#40)
by Builder on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 06:07:06 PM EST

A health club is not a public place. It is a private establishment and the management can request that you do or don't do certain things. Having a camera in the lockerroom is a reasonable thing to prohibit.
--
Be nice to your daemons
Yes.. (none / 0) (#99)
by Politburo on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 03:16:01 PM EST

But going to a gym does not give you the legal right to expect privacy just because it is a privately owned establishment. That's like expecting privacy at the grocery store. A gym could make cameras prohibited on their grounds, but the legal backup for that would probably be a small fine, or just banning the person from the grounds.

[ Parent ]
They can do whatever they want.. (4.33 / 3) (#42)
by bearclaw on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 06:16:24 PM EST

..it is their health club.
-- bearclaw
Thanks for the suggestion! (4.50 / 4) (#56)
by NaCh0 on Thu Feb 27, 2003 at 11:35:30 PM EST

I go to the rec center with my girlfriend. I've gotta buy her one of these phones!!

--
K5: Your daily dose of socialism.
You (2.00 / 1) (#59)
by starsky on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 03:29:39 AM EST

can turn your phone off whilst you're at the gym - it *is* possible. Hope this helps you out.

Also, in the UK, as part of the 'everyone is a paedophile' frenzy, kids aren't allowed these in school in case they take pictures in the change rooms.

I agree kids shouldn't have phones at school (they're there to learn no?), but I don't buy this reasoning...

Ummm... (4.50 / 4) (#63)
by porkchop_d_clown on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 08:38:23 AM EST

When is a locker room a public place?

I would say that the "reasonable expectation of privacy" standard applies while I'm showering in the gym....


--
You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him go off the high dive.


But.. (5.00 / 1) (#98)
by Politburo on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 03:14:05 PM EST

When is a locker room a public place?

I don't own it. I'm not shielded by any partitions. What makes it a private place? Just because you are changing? If the act of changing/showering is so private, why are there no partitions?

[ Parent ]
Like I said - "reasonable expectation" (2.00 / 1) (#101)
by porkchop_d_clown on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 03:25:44 PM EST

As in, people have a reasonable expectation that only one sex will be present in the room and that what goes on in that room will not be relayed to people outside the room.

Do you have some alternate definition of privacy, or do you just assume "private" means "alone"?


--
You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him go off the high dive.


[ Parent ]
You can test this easily enough... (3.00 / 1) (#114)
by rodgerd on Sun Mar 02, 2003 at 07:11:08 PM EST

...if you're a man. Try wandering into the women's changing room and tell them they have no expectation of privacy and that this is a de facto public space. See how far you get. The fact that the changing room will most likely be in a privately owned, privately run organisation that requires a membership of some sort to enter marks it as about as private as a movie theatre.

[ Parent ]
relax (3.66 / 3) (#64)
by danmermel on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 09:59:16 AM EST

stop doing too many things at once... work out, do business, but don't do it all at once.

chill out!

lots of debate on this (4.50 / 2) (#65)
by danmermel on Fri Feb 28, 2003 at 10:19:01 AM EST

here's a link to a BBC radio programme where they discussed whether phone cams would replace photo-journalists in the future and the potential moral/legal pitfalls of this.

THe debate was prompted by this on BBC News Online , where they've been asking people to send in their pics. And they've been flooded with stuff.

Most of the pics are from digicams, not from phone cams, but clearly, this is here to stay. And it clearly will redefine our view of privacy, journalism and many other things, in the same way, perhaps, as blogging has been doing for a while now.

Yes, it is an invasion of privacy (1.00 / 5) (#83)
by m42gal on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 01:51:25 AM EST

because if you don't ask my permission to take a picture of ME, then you are stealing my personal intellectual property and I will pulverize you and stomp on your precious litte 3G device into a million little bits (not you personally unless of course you happen to take a photo of me without my permission). Additionally, people who would do this type of thing are either sickos, wackos and/or just plain thieves. No grey area here as far as I'm concerned.

St.

Ever been in a stranger's shot? (none / 0) (#92)
by ti dave on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 07:21:51 AM EST

Do you walk away when an adjacent tourist whips out the Minolta?
Are you really that concerned that your image is being recorded?

Avoid shopping in stores, because they get your picture every time you walk in the door.
Don't be alarmed though, photography doesn't actually tear your spirit from your body.

Endorsed by the American Taliban Association
[ Parent ]

Photos IP of photographer (3.50 / 2) (#102)
by wurp on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 03:41:32 PM EST

If I'm not mistaken, according to the law photographs are copyrighted by the photographer.  Even if you want to copy a photograph taken of you which you purchased, you have to get permission from the photographer.

I've been burned on this before with photos of my kids, so I demand such permission before I will have a photo taken.

You have no rights to photos someone else takes of you.
---
Buy my stuff
[ Parent ]

Not quite. (5.00 / 1) (#113)
by rodgerd on Sun Mar 02, 2003 at 07:08:31 PM EST

Apart from the fact is varies according to juristiction, you'll find that while the photographer owns the copyright, they have to get a release form from anyone in it to use the photo, unless it's newsworthy, in the United States.

[ Parent ]
Yes, it is an invasion of privacy... (1.66 / 3) (#84)
by m42gal on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 01:58:34 AM EST

because if you don't ask my permission to take a picture of ME, then you are stealing my personal intellectual property and I will pulverize you and stomp on your precious litte 3G device into a million little bits (not you personally unless of course you happen to take a photo of me without my permission). Additionally, people who would do this type of thing are either sickos, wackos and/or just plain thieves. No grey area here as far as I'm concerned.

However, I don't think the camera-phones should be banned based on what they are...unless of course there is some reason that a photo device is already banned (for example: concerts - unless you have a press pass, you can't bring a camera into a concert, though people still do). It's the usage that should be looked into and debated upon...and then there's common sense - but it seems we as a species are lacking that quality.

St.

you have no privacy (5.00 / 2) (#97)
by majcher on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 03:12:17 PM EST

I'm not taking a picture of YOU.  I'm making a recording of the photons bouncing off of you.  It's not like I'm stealing your soul or anything, you primitive screwhead.

Really, banning cameras from pretty much anywhere is a wrong-headed and ultimately short-lived proposition.  We are living in the brief window of history between the invention of photo-taking devices, and the ubiquity of small, undetectable devices that can take pictures (or audio, or video, etc) and store them remotely.  Enjoy your little temper tantrums while you can, because your illusions of privacy are going bye-bye.

And that is just what it is - an illusion.  Say I have a very good memory, an excellent eye for detail, and I'm a rather good artist.  Nothing prevents me from giving your glistening, naked manliness the once over in the locker room, going home, and reproducing your likeness in pencil, charcoal, or my own feces.  (The preferred medium of sickos, wackos, and thieves worldwide.)  Bottom line, if you're so concerned about other people "stealing" you, stay home, under the covers.

Oh yeah, and I <i>dare</i> you to take and destroy my property.  Fucking hypocrite.
--
http://www.majcher.com/
Wrestling pigs since 1988!
[ Parent ]

stupid preview (none / 0) (#100)
by majcher on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 03:22:59 PM EST

And, of course, when I say "your" glistening manliness, I'm referring to the manliness of the reading public at large, not m42gal's.  If she were to turn up in my locker room, I expect there'd be a bigger ruckus than if someone were using a camera phone...
--
http://www.majcher.com/
Wrestling pigs since 1988!
[ Parent ]
well... (5.00 / 1) (#106)
by madenosine on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 07:07:00 PM EST

must one also ask for permission to look at you?

[ Parent ]
sorry for the post and a half... (1.00 / 3) (#85)
by m42gal on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 01:59:33 AM EST


St.

gym locker rooms, the travesty finally surfaces (4.75 / 4) (#86)
by bolthole on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 03:38:22 AM EST

I am put off by gyms altogether, by the "locker area". Why is it okay to have people watch you changing up close and personal, yet it is not okay for them to take pictures of you doing so?

The whole idea of the public changing area sucks to begin with. If they had actual PRIVATE areas to change, this wouldnt be much of an issue.

Yet i've been inside 3 (major chain) gyms is the US, and none of them seem to adequately allow for private changing areas. People seem to be expected to drop their skivvies in a tiled hall with lots of other people around. Ugh.
Maybe this will encourage the management to fix the underlying problem, instead of just the latest symptom.


what are you hiding? (2.33 / 3) (#88)
by chrisseaton on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 05:02:37 AM EST

What exactly are you hiding?

[ Parent ]
Indeed. (3.33 / 3) (#90)
by zeta on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 07:09:38 AM EST

I suppose you wouldn't mind people taking pictures of you having sex with your wife either, right? After all, what are you hiding?

[ Parent ]
Yeah (2.00 / 2) (#96)
by Politburo on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 03:08:42 PM EST

Old Puritan belief: If you have your shades drawn, you must have something to hide.

Is this the way you want to live?

[ Parent ]
Seconded (none / 0) (#108)
by chirpycheeks on Sun Mar 02, 2003 at 02:29:31 AM EST

Amazingly good idea. Provide privacy in gyms changing rooms.

[ Parent ]
what underlying problem? (none / 0) (#116)
by scruffyMark on Mon Mar 03, 2003 at 01:04:21 AM EST

You mean the fact that Americans are so uptight about the fact that they are human beings in human bodies? I think it'll take more than the managers of some health clubs to fix that one.

[ Parent ]
Man Held After Peeping with Photo Phone (4.66 / 3) (#87)
by cce on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 04:12:21 AM EST

This was in Hong Kong's South China Morning Post today (March 1, pg. 4).

MAN HELD AFTER PEEPING WITH PHOTO PHONE

A 26-year-old man was arrested yesterday for using his new Nokia mobile phone to take pictures up a woman's skirt inside a Kwai Chung book store yesterday.

The man was arrested after the shop owner saw him acting suspiciously beside a woman customer in the store on Hing Fong Road shortly after 3.30pm. Police found more than 40 pictures taken up skirts stored inside the Nokia 3650. A police spokeswoman said the man was arrested on a holding charge of loitering and was last night still being questioned at Kwai Chung police station. One of the features of the Nokia 3650 is a built-in ditigal colour camera capable of taking pictures at a resolution of 640 by 480 pixels.

This affects the ecomomy (1.50 / 2) (#95)
by drquick on Sat Mar 01, 2003 at 01:12:01 PM EST

It affects the ecomomy. Or at least the economy of the telecoms sector. Less usage of cellular phone means less phones sold, less money for network operators and less investment in the networks. Telecom has been one of the driving motors of high-tech during the late 90's.

In addition to this camera phone ban, there has been employers banning their employers to use their cellular phone. Fearing, that a possible traffic accident would be the employers responsibility when a phone call during the accident is work related. Scares over cellular phone radiation has a similar effect on phone usage and implies responsibilities for possible injury.

The only positive thing for the business is that cellular phone radiation might be an excuse to phase out current cellular frequencies and thereby force consumers to buy new phones. That would be good business for the whole industry. Throw away and spend - that's our economy :-(

Yet another form of "shooting back" (5.00 / 1) (#117)
by DaChesserCat on Mon Mar 03, 2003 at 10:45:04 AM EST

I wouldn't be surprised if department stores start banning them, as well. They tend to get rather "interested" when someone with a camera comes in. After all, they spend a great deal of money on surveillance (security) equipment, and they don't particularly like it when people are taking images inside their stores.

Don't believe me? Take a digicam into Best Buy and go through, shooting the pricetags of various things. When someone asks you what you're doing, tell them you're comparison shopping; you're getting the prices and items associated with them (because you're planning on buying such-and-such item) and you want to make sure you get the best price. You will, of course being doing the same at Circuit City and other such stores. You will probably be asked to cease and desist or remove yourself from the premises. Stupid? Yes. But, if you're planning some kind of theft, it also makes sense to take pictures and analyze where the surveillance cameras are, determine what spots need to be avoided, etc. Consequently, most stores are very "concerned" by this type of behavior.

Michael Mann, who does some research work with wearable computing, makes a point of taking video recording equipment into stores, at which point the in-store security tends to get very nervous. He's trying to point out the obvious hypocrisy of the fact that the stores are allowed to capture us on video, but we aren't permitted to do the same. More info can be found at his webpage

Sounds like we've got a new medium for plenty of other people to do the same. Let's see how long it takes for such facilities to get "nervous" about digicam-enabled cellphones. I mean, with a real camera, they can remove your film. With a digicam, they can remove your storage media. With a cellphone-cam, as someone else has already pointed out, you can send it off-site immediately where they CAN'T control what you do with it.

Trains stop at train stations Busses stop at bus stations A windows workstation . . .
Steve Mann, not Michael Mann (none / 0) (#119)
by odds on Mon Mar 03, 2003 at 07:54:10 PM EST

Steve Mann runs that site (of Cyberman fame), not Michael Mann (director of Heat and The Insider).

- David

[ Parent ]

Good catch. (none / 0) (#123)
by DaChesserCat on Tue Apr 01, 2003 at 10:50:52 AM EST

My bad.
Trains stop at train stations Busses stop at bus stations A windows workstation . . .
[ Parent ]
Public Place? (none / 0) (#118)
by Mr.Surly on Mon Mar 03, 2003 at 05:30:13 PM EST

A health club is not a "public place." It's a private membership-style business. This is especially true for the locker room.

Existing laws probably apply (none / 0) (#121)
by nalex on Sat Mar 08, 2003 at 08:33:19 AM EST

If a phone takes video then it is not only a phone and the existing rules/customs about video cameras in changing rooms obviously apply.

We have had miniture spy cameras (Minnox for example) with which the undercover pervert could take their changing room shots. Typically however gym changing rooms do not make for very exciting films so it would be a silly craze rather than a social threat.

It may be a boon for the paparazzi overly candid celeb shooters selling their "Madonna at the gym" shots, but somehow camera phones will find many applications in industrial espionage, private investigation and catching politicans in compromising situations, so overall they will be accepted.



Management Reserves the Right... (none / 0) (#122)
by bluefusion on Wed Mar 12, 2003 at 08:30:00 PM EST

It's important to realize that having a cellphone in a changing room is unnecessary. Period. If someone needs their phone, they can go out of the changing room to place a call. Therefore, there's nothing wrong with the management (which is responsible for a private club, as others have said) denying members access to their cellphones in the changing rooms. As for the keychain-camera issue... no solid way around that yet!
--------------------------------------

"Real? What is real? If you are talking simply about what you can see, taste, touch, hear, then 'real' is simply electrical signals interpreted by your brain."

3G Camera Phones, Banned in Public Places? | 123 comments (115 topical, 8 editorial, 0 hidden)
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