The audio-visual studio at Kingston University

Above: The video-game design studio at Kingston University. Credit: Kingston University.

Support Cameras

"At Kingston University the premier filming space, post-production suite and animation suite house the latest technology including three Panasonic HVX200 hi-definition cameras, a Kino Flow lighting system and four rostrum cameras running professional stopmotion capture systems ..." So reads the Kingston University website blurb (as of February 2018) regarding photo-video facilities. The website doesn't mention that some of the most high-tech audio-visual equipment is in use in each classroom--an in-class CCTV system.

A sticker-by-the-door of the classrooms notes that the CCTV camera is in operation only as a "support camera" for technical staff--a phrase surely picked up from a second-rate dystopian novel.

The idea is that staff and students should be reassured that there is a camera recording them in lesson time as this will benefit technicians. Students and staff are under surveillance at Kingston. And the obvious fact remains that those subject to observation by surveillance cannot ascertain who is watching (technicians? seriously?). As Jeremy Bentham worked out all those centuries ago, the person under surveillance is being prevailed upon, invaded and imposed upon, by persons unknown. What new intolerable imposition on student and staff privacy will be next: "support cameras" in the toilets?

(9 February 2018)