Electronic Surveillance: Who Is Watching You? Essay

Electronic Surveillance: Who Is Watching You? Essay

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When one walks out the front door into the world, how aware and conscious are they of how often they are watched, tracked, and monitored? Through surveillance, everywhere one goes they are having their lives watched and invaded by prying eyes. Most people believe society needs electronic surveillance and that it is there to protect them. Others believe society does not need surveillance and worry about their privacy being invaded. Many argue about different issues relating to the costly use of surveillance. Electronic surveillance has a broad range of purposes dealing with past, present, and future events. There needs to be a balance between the benefits that surveillance employs in society and the misuse of surveillance that encroaches on the privacy of all.

Although some are good and some are not, there are several purposes and reasons why society uses electronic surveillance. One main purpose of surveillance, and one of the most common, is for the utilization of promoting safety. People in our society want to feel safe from crime and danger in the world around them. Authorities and law officials use the common means of video surveillance to capture those involved with illegal activity. For example, in the article "Protecting Public Anonymity," the authors state how law officials use video surveillance from a mall to monitor shoppers and to discover if there are any "wanted persons." They also screen malls, or highly populated areas, to "track all persons with previous police records or all persons who have specific genetic, behavioral, religious, or cultural profiles that suggest they are more likely to engage in unlawful activities" (Granger, Morgan and Elaine Newton). This creates problems because it is likely that everyon...


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...hipps, Jennie L. and Leslie Ryan. "Traffic Cameras Bringing Eyeballs to Station Sites." Electronic Media. 19 (2000): 16. Academic Search Premier. EBSCOhost. Community College Library Media Center. 4 Mar. 2008.

Smithsimon, Molly. "Private lives, public spaces: the surveillance state." Dissent 50.1 (Wntr 2003): 43(49). General OneFile. Gale. Community College. 15 Feb. 2008 .

Someone's Watching [videorecording]. NY Times/Discovery Times Channel Production. Discovery, [2005].

Surveillance Tech. [video recording]. [United States]: A&E Home Video, 2004

"Watching as you shop." Economist 385.8558(Dec 2007): 28-29. Academic Search Premier. EBSCOhost. Community College Library Media Center. 15 Mar. 2008.

"Wireless Eyes Watch for Crime." Communications News 44.9(2007):22-24. Academic Search Premier. EBSCOhost. Community College Library Media Center. 4 Mar. 2008.

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