Lifeloggers is a new documentary by the team at Memoto. The film defines lifelog as : “A record of a person’s everyday life produced by a portable device which they regularly carry around.” If the name Memoto sounds familiar, it may be because they are the same team that created the wearable five megapixel life logging camera. The film raises several critical questions and concerns that the lifelogging movement will face in the near future. Issues including privacy as well as fractured groups within the movement that define life logging in several different terms.
Lifelogging, quantitative self movement, and wearable technology are not new subjects to the readers and members of Serious Wonder. However, the idea of privacy regarding the future of wearable technology deserves further discussion.
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Lifelogging has been around side the 1980′s although, at that time, it was a small exclusive set of outliers. However, today the movement is becoming more common and will become more so in the near future. How will lifelogging and products like Google Glass change the way we think of privacy?
Almost everyone has a video enabled phone today. Being photographed or videoed in a public space is practically unavoidable if not expected. We assume that it is culturally acceptable to snap pics of your family and friends on a crowded beach or city street regardless of whom is in the background. In fact, chances are, we are all making an unintentional cameo appearance in a strangers FB timeline right now, and that timeline could be public. This might be acceptable if you were just standing there innocently minding your own business. But what if you were with someone you weren’t supposed to be with or lounging on the beach on your “sick day.” What about proprietary information like filming a motion picture in times square? What about having your children filmed on the beach by strangers? Privacy issues are only going to get more complex in the near future.
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In 2009 in a CNBC interview with then Google CEO, now executive chairman Eric Schmidt, oversimplified the privacy issue. Schmidt said, “If you have something that you don’t want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn’t be doing it in the first place.” I understand his sentiment, but privacy in the future will not be that simple. In the future, wearable technology will allow us to record everything. Privacy is not just about doing something wrong; it is about protecting boundaries that culture has established as safe. Should’n't a private conversation with doctors or friends be kept out of the cultural archives?
Should we strive to evolve past the idea of privacy and embrace full transparency? I think we may not have a choice. I think it is what technology wants from us. Full telepathic transparency.
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