How do you feel about being watched?

I was trying.

I was trying to appear normal.

I was trying to appear normal while the world around me became a strange and creepy place.

Every day a little voice in the back of my head says: “something isn’t right” but I can’t quantify it so I ignore it. Like most people would?

I do my job day in day out. Mostly I work from home. When I do, I become paranoid that I’m being watched.

In a world where key-loggers are a thing. In a world where your laptop camera can be hacked and where there are always new and inventive ways to spy on people.

In this world why wouldn’t you be paranoid?

Wait! what? You have a scrupulous boss who would never monitor you without telling you? Well go you!

We don’t all live in that world…

It’s not like I would care if my laptop was being monitored. You’d have to go a long way to find someone who’ll work as hard as I do when at home. But the knowing?! The knowing plays a big part in my level of OK with it.

When I go into the office instead of staying at home, I am watched.

I’ve had phone calls before along the lines of:

“What were you doing outside?”

“Just having a smoke, how did you know I was outside?”

“I saw you on the camera.”

It’s fine. I know there are cameras there. I know I’m being watched.

But the thought that there might be some form of monitoring I don’t see… creeps me out.

And this, this is the grey area. One people don’t like talking about. It makes people feel guilty. It forces the question, why do you need privacy?

If I reserve my right to privacy, I look guilty. I must have something to hide right? If I’m working from home my boss has every right to monitor my productivity because I’m not somewhere that can be easily observed.

I’d often thought of privacy advocates as people with things to hide. But I get it now.

The question is not about secrets and skeleton closets. It’s a question of choice.

I should have the right to choose, I can only have that right if I know about it.

If I am monitored without my knowledge I can’t choose to give up my right to privacy. If I know I am being monitored and I don’t like it, I can choose to work somewhere else.

I don’t believe that all forms of monitoring are bad. Some forms are there for our protection and security, and, believe me, I’m fine with that.

I couldn’t care less if there were a thousand CCTV cameras pointing at my flat, that’s what curtains are for. If it helps stop burglaries and violent crimes in the area then have at it. Though, you know, a thousand cameras might be a bit excessive…

Realistically I shouldn’t care if my laptop is monitored. I do the work I need to do, in the time I need to do it in. My boss sees the output and he’ll ask if something has taken a long time.

I don’t know if my laptop is monitored. I swing wildly between being convinced that it is and convinced that it isn’t.

It’s really unhealthy for me. As you can tell from this overly paranoid post.

I’ve talked to others about it. They usually convince me I’m being paranoid. I’ll calm down for a day or two and then it pops back up.

That niggle.

Something isn’t right with me.

I just can’t put my finger on it.

Please clap or leave a comment. Sometimes its good to know someone enjoyed reading what you had to say.

I’m not totally paranoid. Last week I wrote about why we need censorship:

If you enjoy reading me ranting about random shit check this out:

I’m learning to be myself in public. That means writing stuff that makes me uncomfortable. Like this post. Who in the world would admit to being a paranoid mess, in public, for no gain?

Me. I just did. (WTF?! — you did? Why would you do that?!!)

If my post helps just one person. Makes just one person think differently. Then I will have done what I set out to achieve.

Thanks for reading

Kat x