In 2011, Kyle McDonald visited two Apple Stores in Manhattan and installed some software that would take selfies of people using the shiny, shiny toys and upload them to his (now defunct) Tumblr. Kyle was later awoken by the Secret Service and had his computers confiscated. However, his work was prescient. We stare dumbly at our screens without acknowledging the camera inches from our heads.
“We have this expression on our face [when we use computers] that basically says that we’re not interacting with anybody, we’re interacting with the machine.”
– Kyle McDonald (Cult of Mac)
For a vomit-inducing example look at Howard Stern of fast-talk radio, he jerks off with his iPad.
“I jerk off with my iPad and I’ve been reading about how they’re using these cameras in the computers to spy on people. Well guess what I do: I put a piece of tape over it when Im [sic] jerking off.”
– Howard Stern’s epitaph (Inverse)
Now that we all have that image rattling around our brains forever, what are we going to do about it? A dunk in a sensory deprivation chamber might buff it out, or just hours of kitten videos, but it will always be there. Somewhere. But the other “it”, the Panopticon in the room, has another solution.
Michael Sorrentino, who used to be a TV news person, learned about the camera-thing a few years ago too. In response, he launched the EyePatch (or iPatch if you’re still doing that). It’s a lens cap built into a case. However, it also cleans your glass, making it appeal to the ‘phonetographers’. That’s not what we’re calling them by the way. I think Instagrammer is the correct nomenclature.
Unless your camera is covered, its always on.
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