Who draws the line between privacy and policies aiming at public safety? Is it the people through voting and demonstrating or is it the governments, who are in total control of this somehow delicate matter? The fact that these questions cannot be answered with a simple yes or no, but need to be thought through first, before shaping an opinion is what it renders this issue one of the most controversial and exciting topics of this century.
We are currently living in countries that are constantly under the shadow of potential terror attacks. As far as Germany and more specifically Berlin is concerned, this has led to the installation of nearly 15.000 surveillance cameras around the city, the vast majority of which are part of the system of public transport. Their presence is discreet making the feeling of being monitored rather rare. One of the current governing parties, the CDU, has always pleaded for the presence of closed-circuit television. Yet one inconvenient question seems to linger: does this measure have a positive effect on people’s safety and if yes, is it substantial enough to justify the countless eyes following us in our daily life? Especially in light of the recent assault of a young woman in the Berlin subway this topic has come up in people’s minds again.
The intervention artists Rocco and his brothers have addressed the issue through the following brass initiative documented in this suspenseful video.
In their vimeo channel the state the following about the intervention: “What would happen if not two but 32 surveillance cameras were installed in a carriage?
– It would be empty at 10am during rush hour in the city centre while people in the adjoining wagons are fighting for seats.”