Town council snoops on phones to find litterbugs & unlicensed pet owners

Juha sez, "Wyndham council in the Australian state of Victoria has been spying on residents for three years to find not terrorists, but people who litter and keep unregistered pets, and advertise without permission. Words fail me. If this isn't a wake-up call for greater privacy protection, I don't know what is."

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  1. This is interesting because, unlike the US, Australia doesn't have 4th amendment rights, or a bill of rights in general, and it doesn't have as much a level of mistrust for government either.

    so it'll be interesting to see what kind of backlash comes from this, and compare it to the US' approach.

  2. There was a story on BoingBoing, I think, about a guy who set up a cam to find out who was making sweet love to his girlfriend's bike - or something. Was this an invasion of privacy? If not, why not?

    At some point, someone will complain that using your eyes to observe a crime is an invasion of privacy.

    Backlash? There won't be one. The public is fine with a certain amount of snooping, in general.

  3. And update your pic, the photo is awful.

  4. Perhaps we read different articles, but I'd say there's quite a difference between a citizen setting up a camera to record someone who is trespassing on one's own property versus a local government mining through metadata to all electronic correspondence to determine petty misdemeanors.

    I don't recall the post, so maybe the camera in the article you mentioned followed the supposed perpetrator around for the next year broadcasting the accused's location and social circle back to the victim, but I doubt it.

    You're right, I'm sure that claim will be made. I'm sure that claim has been made. But there's a fundamental difference in scope (length of intrusion, amount of data collected, etc.). Maybe in your world the occupation of 'Security Guard" is the same as "Spy", but I don't think most people would agree with that distinction.

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