The display in Newseum raised the matter of privacy v. security, with a special focus on FBI and its increased security measures after the 9/11 attack. The issue posed striking similarities with the story of the Little Brother, as the DHS increased the scale of its surveillance after a terrorist attack on the Bay bridge.

What I found interesting is the link people drew between words. For instance, surveillance means security and privacy means liberty. On the other hand, increased surveillance measures doesn’t necessarily mean that safety is ensured. The loss of privacy to social media and websites such as Google/Amazon might not have such a strong connection to liberty.

If we discuss the terms surveillance and security at face value, they are both neutral words. Although there is a negative connotation associated with the word itself, surveillance without further action on the information obtained can seem harmless at times. However, as we discussed about the podcast, surveillance acts like a Panopticon, altering people’s behaviors as they know they’re being watched.

The wording on the display board itself is also interesting. It uses the words privacy and security instead of privacy and surveillance. On the other hand, on the bottom it raises the question: what would you give up to “feel” safer, this time using the word “feel” instead of “be”.