Chicago sleepwalks into the surveillance society with "intelligent" networked cameras

Ryan sez, "Chicago is touting their new 'intelligent' 700+ camera network as being able to flag suspicious activity without human intervention, based on operator-defined criteria within the video frame. Video is archived for 30 days in a 60 terabyte storage vault. Great."

They're everywhere. They're multiplying. Several thousand cameras are now capable of sending live pictures into a room – the operations center at the city's Office of Emergency Management and Communication.

There's no way that human beings can effectively watch all those feeds, so enter video analytics. By programming algorithms, you give the camera intelligence.

"We actually can tell the camera, 'This is precisely what we're looking for.' The camera will watch for that circumstance, and when that circumstance occurs, comes back to the human being whether they're watching that camera or not – with an alert," said OEMC director Jim Argiropolous.

Someone needs to come up with a name for this fallacy, the "untouched by human hands" fallacy: "the computers are impartially finding the bad behavior — there's no human bias or prejudice at work — we just program it and then it proceeds with perfect platonic precision to catch all the bad guys."


(Thanks, Ryan!)