Body Worn Video Steering Group
Over the years we have become accustomed to cameras in buildings and cameras in everyone’s pockets. Now it is becoming more and more normal for cameras on bodies, recording our every move in case the footage becomes useful later. This is our future as imagined by those who research wearable cameras.
Albrecht Schmidt is a professor of human interaction at the University of Stuttgart in Germany. He stated, “This is not as distant a future as we imagine”. He also acknowledged, “Now, we are making a conscious decision of what to capture on camera. When we wear cameras, we capture much more than we need, and when there is something we need, we always have it.”
It is interesting to realise that although many officers over the world are involved and aware of body worn video, it is becoming a thing for everyone to take notice of as it could be part of our future.
There are of course many benefits of everyone wearing a body worn camera. For example, researchers could study the life of hundreds of people with the same disease. Another great benefit is that when a tragedy or act of terrorism occurred, investigators would have thousands of pictures to call upon to help find out what happened.
However, one of the biggest concerns are privacy issues. Researchers such as Schmidt say that those concerns will be worked out as the technology becomes more useful.
The presence of body worn cameras tends to make people behave at all times so that there can be no evidence used against them. This works for officers as well as the general public. Existing studies show that the presence of a body camera affects citizen’s interaction with the police. It seems they are less likely to make false reports against officers.