03 April 2007

[liff] If Orwell Were Spinning In His Grave, It'd be On CCTV

748 Phil Plait, via the Bad Astronomy blog, takes note of a tender departure:

Irony is dead. The UK killed it: there are 28 CCTV cameras within 200 yards of George Orwell’s house.

From the referenced article, readable online here complete with map:

Use of spy cameras in modern-day Britain is now a chilling mirror image of Orwell's fictional world, created in the post-war Forties in a fourth-floor flat overlooking Canonbury Square in Islington, North London. On the wall outside his former residence - flat number 27B - where Orwell lived until his death in 1950, an historical plaque commemorates the anti-authoritarian author. And within 200 yards of the flat, there are 32 CCTV cameras, scanning every move.

Orwell's view of the tree-filled gardens outside the flat is under 24-hour surveillance from two cameras perched on traffic lights.

The flat's rear windows are constantly viewed from two more security cameras outside a conference centre in Canonbury Place.

In a lane, just off the square, close to Orwell's favourite pub, the Compton Arms, a camera at the rear of a car dealership records every person entering or leaving the pub.

No word on whether or not the Crompton Arms serves gin flavored with cloves.

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2 comments:

Steve Beattie said...

(Pasted in by SJKP from Gmail):

Irony has alas been dead for a while; I collected
this
image
off the interwebs a few years ago.

Samuel John Klein Portlandiensis said...

That's hilarious in the wrong way, Steve.

Mind if I use it in a post?

I guess it turns out that the thing that wasn't so science-fiction-y in V for Vendetta was the surveillance. They already do have eyes everywhere, and the real irony was that it was a Briton who tried to tell us to watch out for it.