Panopticisim in the Modern Day

One way that we can see panopticism in today’s society is in the form of security cameras. While it is the most obvious example, I do think it’s the best example to use. Anywhere you go you can easily find at least one camera in a place of business, with many of these places going out of their way to show that they are watching. Whether it’s as simple as a light showing you the camera is on or more explicitly like having a live feed of what the camera sees being shown publicly. To some, it may feel weird and uncomfortable to have them watching you like that while you’re simply just shopping but it’s in place for a reason, the system works. While there are cases in which people will still do whatever despite having cameras looking at them when you think about the number of people who have been in front of those cameras and whether they, consciously or unconsciously, changed their behavior because of them.  There are far more people who decided to act “properly” than not. Especially when you realize that in some cases you’ve been tricked as some of the cameras that you see aren’t real. For one reason or another, the camera gets damaged or even stolen but the housing that the camera sits in is still there. Making it appear as though the camera is perfectly fine. Which is enough to make you or anyone else act “properly”.  In one’s everyday life, this to me is as close to an actual panopticon as you’re going to get, while you may have the freedom to move around and do what you want. You don’t know if the camera that has you in its sights is real or not and if it is there’s no way of knowing if someone is actually behind it. Regardless you are much more likely to act the way they want you to because of it.

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