2007/06/02

Should Have Called It "Ogle Street View"

Have you tried the search engine giant's latest spin of their mapping technology, Google Street View? If not, then you're in for a nasty surprise. This technology uses high-resolution photographs to give you detailed street level views of a number of cities around the US, and the results are both voyeuristic and disturbing.


Google claims that it's all perfectly legal since the technology doesn't show anything that cannot already be seen from the street. Of course, most people on the street don't have 4x zoom eyeballs. So one wonders what exactly makes Google think that they're on solid legal footing here?

A person who peers into your windows is trespassing and usually violating local "criminal surveillance" (aka. "peeping-tom") laws. A photographer armed with telephoto lens, trying to catch you in an unguarded moment, may also be violating anti-stalking laws such as we have here in California. Enterprising individuals will almost certainly use Street View to produce mashups that...say...assign apartment numbers to windows or add people's names to buildings.

Hell...the detail on the photograph of my block is so good that I can tell that it was photographed in early spring, at about 9:00 in the morning, on a weekend, and had our shutters not been closed you could have caught the Frogette and I having breakfast.

Let the privacy violations begin!

25 Comments:

Hopefully Louisville isn't important enough and Google has simply passed over the city. That's part of why I like living here.
big brother is watching. so now we can google even to be a peeping tom... cool :)
Captain... They're comin' for ya pork-chop!

o now we can google even to be a peeping tom...

Raffi... And without all the fuss and potential illegalities.
Maybe you shouldn't be doing something you don't want other people to see! (Like eating breakfast!) I forsee a future industry of window shades with more interesting scenes printed on them (or subtle messages to Google or the NSA)
This is disturbing!
dont forget to keep your shutters closed at all times-haha-this is really getting disturbing tho. Are there no boundaries or limits?
Should we be thankful for the shutters?
Lew... Like the shade idea. Though I suspect that, "F*ck You Google!" would violate my H.O.A.'s rules regarding window coverings.

Fashiongirl... Not nearly as disturbing as it could have been. ;-)
Should we be thankful for the shutters?

UndeniableL... Very thankful! :-)

But it's like Robert said, we're keeping them closed all the time now.
I don't care for this at all.
Egads, tell me you somehow made this all up...?
Sumo... I don't think that this is going last too long. Already sites are springing to showcase the most embarassing pictures.

tell me you somehow made this all up...?

Nvisiblewmn... Wish I could, but I'm not that creative even on my best days.
Holy effing cow, I could see my car and the kids tree fort!
OMG! There is no privacy anymore. Just think of the advantage this would give thieves - they can case a place from the comfort of their own den.
Hey, just realized it's an old picture. Some landmarks now there. But still...OMG, as peacechick said.

(Meant "kids' tree fort," of course.
I agree that this is appalling. Now which sites were those with the embarrassing pictures?
SA... Don't know, but when you find out could you...uh...email me.

Nvisiblewmn, Peacechick... In my neighborhood, figuring out when people are home and when they're not could be a real advantage for the would-be thief.
Yipes, I'm glad I live in BFE and they don't have pictures of my area - yet.
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We no longer have any privacy at all. Not even in our house, yard or pool!
I wonder how many people went and tried it after reading this post?
You know, it isn't so much the zoom ability that is worrisome. It is more that someone has unlimited time to study in private. If you are on the street, you look pretty suspicious staring at someone's house for very long. Hell, in some parts of the country, that can get you shot!
Kathy... "BFE"? No matter, I'm sure Google has you on a list. ;-)

Suzie-Q... Apparently not, but don't worry about the pool. Unless, of course, it's in your front yard. :-)
I wonder how many people went and tried it after reading this post?

Robert... All of them?! :-)

Praguetwin... That's a good point. I was frankly shocked at the detail of the photos. You could have read the names off of our door box.
Well, I think I'm just going to start dancing naked on my dining room table. That ought to get them to stop.

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