byEvan Blass||June 2nd 2006 at 10:55amJune 2nd 2006 10:55 am
Texas Governor Rick Perry has just announced a plan to leverage the eyeballs of millions of voyeuristic web surfers into a de facto army of unpaid border guards, by allowing the general public to watch live streams from video cameras trained on the Mexican border and call a toll-free number to report illegal crossings. Although the governor did not go into details on how many cameras would be installed nor how far apart they would be positioned, he did estimate the cost of the program at around five million dollars, which would buy almost 3,000 high-def HDR-HC3 camcorders even if Sony decided not to give the state a bulk discount. Leaving the whole immigration issue aside, what really stands out about this project is that it could possibly set a precedent for inner-city officials to open up their surveillance cameras to John Q. Public -- so instead of some authoritarian regime monitoring every citizen's activities, "Big Brother" will actually become all of us.