There is no doubt anyone reading this story has already read a version. The death of Tyler Clementi has become a landmark case of snooping into the lives of ordinary citizens due to the quest for open portrayal of our lives. Molly Wei and Dharun Ravi, who secretly recorded a sexual encounter between two males operated on the theory they have a right to tell the world anything and everything about the lives of those who they know or don’t know. We inhabit an Open Society in which our emails are really not our emails, but can be accessed by millions. We go for a walk and someone is taking pictures of the street and before we know what happened the day we took off for illness is now revealed to our boss as a vacation from work. In England, there are currently thousands of cameras recording daily activities of just about everyone. They get our picture entering a subway, they have a portrait of who we are chatting with at a bar or did we accidentally bump into a person. We are not alone, we are in an early version of 1984 in which not merely “the government,” but WE are also jail keepers of the world.
I am certain Molly and Dharun are angry at being apprehended because all they were doing is what thousands of other students do–record minutia. which all too often becomes an international incident. How about a daily turning off of all cameras for an hour?