A new tech from Apple has been approved by the US Patent and Trademark Office. It can disable iPhone cameras from photographing or recording live events.
According to the patent, “An infrared emitter can be located in areas where picture or video capture is prohibited. An electronic device can then receive the infrared signals, decode the data and temporarily disable the device’s recording function based on the command.”
The same technology can also be used to beam data to lots of iPhones at the same time, in a particular location. For example, people touring a wildlife park can get updates about each animal and its hideouts.
Seems logical enough. How many times have we been annoyed at live shows with iPhones blocking the view? Even places of worship are no more serene with everyone clicking selfies. There is violation of copyright too. Concerts and plays are now released the very next minute in social media platforms. If the tech comes into real world, we’d be able to establish camera free zones and really engage in the physical world.
So Apple filed for this new tech patent in 2009.
But this idea also raises eyebrows. Cameras are powerful weapons that fit neatly into pockets. They have great impact when used the right way.
With this new tech, third parties could control your iPhone filming anytime. How will Apple control who gets access to this technology? Any member of the parliament can turn off all the TV cameras to put people into doom. A dictator’s government could use this to blackout all the social media coverage of an ongoing violence. Police and any authority could very easily remotely just disable the camera on your iPhone, rendering it completely impossible to collect evidences against their ill manners.
Transparency will be dead. Smartphones videos have become an iconic way of getting the truth out in social media. Big powers will be able to lie and will their way doing so. Ugly truths have been depicted in their true forms with these little devices guarding ready everywhere.
Is this patent trying to mess with the right to film? What are your concerns and why? Tell us immediately.