Friday, September 19, 2008

The art of surveillance

Ever since the first photograph was taken, it has been used as a tool for surveillance. Google has taken this potential with street view proving 360 degree panoramic street levels views that allows viewers to proceed through an area as if at ground level.

Artist Hasan Elahi who was picked up as a potential terrorist on returning to the US post 9/11 has since published every aspect of his life on the web. He publishes his real-time location, daily photos validating his whereabouts, his bank statements, the meals he has eaten and even the toilets he has visited. All this in order to avoid being mistaken for a terrorist again. The regime at Guantanamo Bay leaves one with little confidence in the precept of justice, innocent until proven guilty.

For this artist going public was the only way he could ensure his privacy and primary right to freedom.

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