The show, whose first episode will air on September 26, has privacy advocates concerned.
A gag video with a touch of Big Brother. Amazon launches Monday, September 26″ring nation“, a television program that will be made from videos recorded by Ring surveillance cameras.
Ring will use clips uploaded to social networks by the owners of these video door phones, whose manufacturer has been purchased by amazon in 2018. The company promises funny, moving or surprising moments: falls, animals, dancing delivery men and unlikely conversations will be present. Images that are already having some success on social networks, especially on TikTok, where they sometimes accumulate several million views.
But criticism had surfaced even before the show’s release. Some, like the technology and social change researcher Chris Gillard quoted by the MIT Technology Review, denounces an attempt by Amazon to restore the image of its subsidiary, pointed out on several occasions for having provided images to the police without the consent of the owners of the cameras in question. Ring is also criticized for reselling personal data obtained through the mobile camera monitoring app to third-party companies such as Facebook, according to the NGO. Electronic Frontier Foundation.
The program also worries activists and privacy specialists, because it could trivialize the presence of surveillance cameras, and thus make people forget their risks and their negative aspects. A representative from the show’s distributor, MGM Television (also a subsidiary of Amazon), assures the hollywood reporter that “Ring Nation will seek permission for each video from its owner and any identifiable individual, as well as the companies that own the rights to the clips.”
Ironically, the show will be hosted by Wanda Sykes, an American comedian and actress who also… worked for the NSA, the American electronic intelligence agency, at the center of the covert global surveillance operations revealed by Edward Snowden.