First arrest captured by google glass.

Notice the long tracking shots. Also notice that no one notices. Now imagine 10% of the population doing this all the time, walking in and out of buildings and homes.  Imagine all this data being time stamped and geotagged,  flowing to a large database in the cloud. A omniscient eye; a real time streetview extending into homes and businesses; society as a glass prism.

There has been a certain amount of discussion casting this as a great step forward for ‘citizen journalism’. While undoubtedly it is true that more news footage will be captured by amateurs, this does not mean that citizens will become investigative journalists exposing systematic issues. Rather citizens will become crowd sourced paparazzi and informers. They will of course expose celebs. They will catch the occasional crime or even Rodney King style police abuse not just humorous incidents. However this will still be embedded within the dominant dispositif. They will contribute images to be judged by the existing legal, economic and media apparatus rather than challenging it. This is not the activist journalism of Indymedia, secret revelations of ‘Spies For Peace‘ and Wikileaks, or the muck raking investigation of Private Eye but rather the crowd sourced submission of America’s Funniest Home Videos or World’s Dumbest criminals. Video is typically something which reveals human actions rather than systematic organizational issues. The normalizing gaze is extended and reproduced not fundamentally challenged by placing cameras on people’s heads.