In the interest of your own safety

It’s a striking street graphic for sure. But at the expense of provocation, its message about the erosion of civil liberties doesn’t quite add up

It’s a striking street graphic for sure. But at the expense of provocation, its message about the erosion of civil liberties doesn’t quite add up…

The image, created by the Creative Orchestra for citizen-control.tv, forms part of a poster campaign and YouTube film based on the line “It all starts with ‘in the interest of your own safety…'”.

Playing on the notion of the authoritarian voice defending CCTV as being in the interests of individuals, when it’s more in the interests of the state, the idea seems to be that if we don’t wise up to the increased erosion of civil liberties, well, don’t say we didn’t warn you. 

The danger here, however, is that on the way to coming up with a simple, powerful design, the final message gets confused. So we have Hitler = bad and CCTV = bad as well. Both together = very bad i.e. we’re on the way to living in a Nazi state.

Except we’re not. While it’s staggering that the UK does currently have more CCTV cameras on our streets per citizen than any other country, isn’t it rather an insensitive jump to relate this aspect of civil rights concern with Hitler’s Germany?

But then, it’s just an image, right? Or wrong?

Creative Orchestra has also created this accompanying ad:

Imagery from the campaign can also be viewed and downloaded from citizen-control.tv.

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