Camera Prohibition

I’ve read about it on some mobile sites, and a lot of friends working in technology companies have told me as well: companies don’t like camera phones, in fact they start prohibiting them on their premises.

Let’s forget for a moment how non-cluetrain this is, and how it’s not gonna work because *all* phones will have cameras sooner or later – what is this about?

Industry espionage? Come on… The quality of most camera phone images, let alone when done in a hurry, matches hand drawings. Granted, cameras are getting better, so that may not count. But: don’t you think someone who wants to spy on you and is blunt enough to use a camera phone could not – just as easy – use a real digital camera, or one of those pen or watch cameras?
This reminds me of the use of programmable calculators in high school. First the teachers tried prohibiting them, then they started manually erasing memory before exams, but soon there were too many different models to be able to do that. In the end, technology outsmarts prohibition – always. Just think copy protection or N-Gage games ;)

Besides espionage, I can understand the need for privacy in some areas, and I understand that not everyone or everything should be subject to camera lenses.

What about jamming cameras? Lots of camera phones have Bluetooth on board, all of them do GSM or whatever your network technology happens to be. Maybe in “secret” areas a bluetooth signal could be broadcast telling camera phones to disable the camera (this would of course require the vendor’s participation). Better maybe, cameras could broadcast something that would ring a bell when someone with a camera phone enters a certain area. Or you might use cell broadcast to mark areas.

I don’t know, gut feeling tells me that technical solutions won’t work here, but my mind tends to think that way anyway :)

What do you think? Creative ideas anyone?

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