Looking around you on the street, getting onto the bus, or refuelling your car, you will always find a security camera pointed in your direction. What happens to all the footage? What happened to our privacy? This film with accompanying lecture is shown in collaboration with WUR ICT, entrance is free.
Panopticism is a philosophy invented by the Englishman Jeremy Bentham in 1791. The dome-shaped prison puts this philosophy into practice. Buildings are designed in such a way that detainees believe they are under continual observation, while being unable to see whether or not this is the case. The philosophy is intended to create an organised, controlled society. And certainly since 9-11 this principle has been applied more generally. Take, for example, the recording of travel details. The result is the severe curtailment of our privacy.
In Panopticon Peter Vlemmix studies this phenomenon. Does everyone in the Netherlands think this state of affairs is acceptable? Since the revelations made by Edward Snowden we know more about which aspects of our lives are being observed. At the same time it has become apparent just how flawed these systems are and how easily private information can be unwittingly exposed. Shouldn’t we be less trusting?
Peter Vlemmix shows examples of surveillance that occurs in everyday life. He consults various experts about the background and potential dangers. He shows the extent of the current hunger for private information. And asks why in other countries organisations are less willing to release the data they hold. Panopticon prompts discussion by showing the pros and cons of this obsession with observation. We are showing this film and an accompanying lecture in collaboration with Wageningen UR’s ICT department, and as part of information security awareness week. More information about the lecture will follow.