You Are Being Watched



George Orwell wrote 1984 in 1949. He only got the idea that Big Brother is watching our every move off by a few years. I wonder if George were alive today he would recognize our world of cell phone cameras, security cameras, you tube postings and thousands of hours of reality TV as what he described in his prophetic work?


With the proliferation of cameras and ways for people to share what they have filmed I don’t know why people continue to act like no one is watching when everyone is watching. Police should be the first to know that their every moves are being scrutinized. But the people who protest those same police actions with illegal reactions are also being filmed. The problem now is there is no way for society to prosecute all the wrongs that are being filmed.


Not all people protesting are doing anything wrong, but surely if you are doing something wrong the chances are great that someone or something is going to catch it on film. Has society gotten so numb to these pictures of people breaking windows or trashing cars that don’t belong to them that we no longer see the faces? Are their grandparents upset by their showing up on TV or is it all OK somehow?


I never understood when a college team wins a big game and their fans go out and burn things up in their town. The team won, why are you destroying things? How can we change this pattern of reacting to something bad or good with destruction?


I for one figure there are cameras watching everything so I don’t even want to scratch my backside when I’m out in public in case I show up on some horrible You Tube video. When I was a teenager the worst thing that might happen to you was if you went out of the house dressed in a terrible outfit you might show up in the back of the Glamour Magazine with a black bar across your eyes and the label of a “Glamour Don’t.”   I don’t think I ever knew anyone who was published as a “Glamour Don’t,” but the fear of being called one was real. Today, I don’t think people have that same fear. I feel like the reaction to something like that would just be the middle finger.


Now more people are watching, but less people are caring. I think I need to reread 1984 and see how Orwell’s character’s reacted. Somehow the idea that we are being watched has just made people react worse not better.

One Comment on “You Are Being Watched”

  1. ellenpunderwood says:

    I would love to read a good sequel to “1984”, set 50 years later in 2034. Would be very interested in reading the thoughts of people who are predicting what life could be like about 30 years from now (at the 50th anniversary of 1984). It is hard for me to imagine what life will be like, and how many changes we will see, in just 30 years. You are right Dana — there is very little privacy today.

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