Surveillance Society host public forum

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A public forum aimed at discussing the CCTV state and privacy issues was a success however was let down by the absence of Lancaster University’s Head of Security.

Watching the Watchers: The Surveillance Society Exposed took place on Thursday Week Five from 12-4pm in Furness Lecture Theatre One. The event attracted more than 20 individuals which was a vast improvement on the previous meeting.

Dan Ray, a third year Philosophy student attended to talk about the rights to privacy and said: “I’m pleased with the turn out this time around. Last time there was only four people in for a discussion”. Ray was debating with fellow speaker Andrew Dixon on different aspects of the rights we have in privacy, in that the rights we are given aren’t specific enough to define what privacy actually is.

Amongst the guest speakers were Charles Farrier and Steve Jolly who are founders of the No CCTV Campaign. They continued through the rest of the afternoon with their keynote address on ‘Watching the Watchers’. Mark Salisbury, Acting Head of Security was scheduled to talk in the early the afternoon, however he was unable to attend as he was stuck in traffic.

One inevitable topic to arise was the recent super injunction saga, which concerns a Premier League footballer who was allegedly involved in illicit relations outside marriage and wanted to conceal it from the public. This brought on a heated discussion on the value of private matters that left both Ray and Dixon split.

One member of the audience was asked why he turned up and what he expected. “I wanted to come to a forum where I could discuss an issue that I feel strongly about. I was looking forward to what [Mark] Salisbury had to say for himself but I wasn’t surprised that he didn’t show.”

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