It’s a well known fact that London is by definition a surveillance society; according to The Atlantic, London has 4.2 Million CCTV cameras installed or 1 for every 14 Londoners. After UK officials have failed to get unprecedented access to social media accounts, they are now considering clamping down on the use of social media networks.
Though no official plan has been released, during an emergency meeting of parliament, Britain’s prime minister tossed around the idea of severely restricting access to social media networks in general but more specifically RIM’s BBM service. A move that has historically been seen and reported as a tactic of oppressive regimes. As of now, RIM has expressed they are willing to work with all local regulatory bodies but has not explicitly said they would be handing over chat logs for their BBM service.
London is now center stage for the ongoing debate of how much security is need, to what extent are these measures working, and if in the end, less personal freedoms are in fact worth giving up in the name of security. 4.2 million cameras haven’t been able to stop rioters and clamping down on mobile internet access didn’t work in Egypt; we’re walking a fine line that I’m not sure we should cross. Even as London continues to burn.