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Tuesday, July 8, 2014

drone in the sky - woman complains of peeping tom...


Peeping Tom is a 1960 film directed by Michael Powell and written by the World War II cryptographer and polymath Leo Marks. The title derives from the slang expression 'peeping Tom' describing a voyeur. The film revolves around a serial killer who murders women while using a portable movie camera to record their dying expressions of terror.

Often, Cinema is a great entertainer – some love to watch movies for their romance content, some for their story-line; some for the stunt; some for the special effects; some for the songs; music and still some…….. simply for the actress / actors ! – there are some Cinemas spoken off for their special effect and the use of technology. Away from such Hollywood films, back home, the mega buster Rajini starrer – Enthiran hyped too much of expectations and raked in high moolah.  It was a grand Science fiction in Tamil co-written and directed by Shankar.   My favourite Sujata [Srirangam Rangarajan] who provided the thread and originally announced as the dialogue writer of the film, died during the production stages ! The film had Super Star Rajinikanth in dual roles, as a scientist and an andro humanoid robot, alongside Aishwarya Rai.  

The story-line revolved around the scientist's struggle to control his creation, the robot whose software was upgraded to give it the ability to comprehend and generate human emotions. In one of the scenes, displaying its capability, it would easily enter a building on fire and save people…..the flip-side is devoid of emotions, it saves and carries out a girl who gets trapped in the bathroom and has no dress on…..

Away in US – there is news of a woman calling  police over claims that a drone was 'spying' on her through window of 26th-floor apartment while she was getting dressed.  Newspaper reports suggest that the woman named  Lisa Pleiss said she felt violated when she saw a drone hovering outside her apartment window on the 26th floor of her Seattle highrise.  “It was freaky,” she told KIRO. “You don’t expect to be walking around indecent in your apartment and then have this thing potentially recording you.” Pleiss, concerned it was looking into her apartment, called her concierge, who reported it to police. The concierge went outside and saw two men piloting the drone. They also had a video camera, according to a statementfrom the Seattle Police Department.

The drone reportedly belonged to Joe Vaughn, founder of Skyris Imaging, a Portland company that builds commercial drones ~ and when word of the so-called peeping-Tom incident got back to him, he called the authorities to explain. “I immediately contacted the Seattle Police Department, let them know my name, the name of my company, what we were there for and who my client was,” he told KGW. “Then, they called my client to confirm that we were there for a reasonable purpose.” The drone that surprised Pleiss was one of six the company uses to take photos of skylines for architects, real estate agents and developers, but they are only used when Vaughn has permission from property owners, he said.

On that day, he said he was using one to take pictures for a developer planning a 20-story office building. A Seattle Police spokesman, told the Los Angeles Times the drone incident does raise legal questions. It may not have been illegal if the drone was not equipped with a camera or if its camera was pointed down at a public street, he said. “It’s fairly common that technology has outpaced legislation and lawbreaking. At this point, there are [none] that we have found yet, laws, at least for Seattle, as to how an unmanned [aerial vehicle] is to be operated in this city,” he told the Times. “If any laws were broken, they would lie in the realm of violation of privacy laws, but there is no ‘Hey, you can’t fly a UAV this way or that way.’”  He further added that a law may have been broken if police could prove the drone had a camera aimed inside the building. 

The affected person, Pleiss posted a message about the experience on her Facebook page. KIRO 7 asked the Federal Aviation Administration,  who reaffirmed rules for unmanned model aircraft.  They only address air traffic safety, not privacy. Seattle police admit there's not much they can do about drone complaints -- with one exception.  "If you feel threatened by it, or you get hit by it, feel free to tell a person,”……….. as they say, Law prescribes punishments only after the Society recognizes them as a crime – and that way for the first crime, there can be no prescribed punishment

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

27th June 2014.

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