Addressing Privacy Concerns of Neighbors

Lebeter

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I was reading another thread and this subject, it got me thinking about a few topics that could be expanded on in one thread.

An installer doesn't face the repercussions of the installation of a surveillance system with regards to neighbors unless called back to modify the installation to appease a neighbor at the end users request regardless of the operators rights. Hopefully an installer will understand local and municipal code, but after the job is done, they walk away. Likely they will not take the time to relay possible queries that could come up after the installation because quite honestly it could cost them the job and or business. As a DIY'er and end user, we have dealt with these type of issues and may be able to afford answers to others in the process. The privacy issue i'm sure has come up with many people. Before I took on my installation I actually probed a good standing neighbor by suggesting the installation of video surveillance beforehand to see how they felt about it.

Has anyone heard of any cases where legal action stemming from the illegal use of surveillance systems where the installer was named as a co-defendant resulting from the improper installation of a surveillance system?

While we have laws that dictate surveillance and their use in public and private places, there are obviously agreements and disagreements to the laws and or their use. Whether you are an installer or simply an advocate of surveillance technology, I anticipate their is less advice provided to appease neighbors who are either mildly or strongly concerned about the use of video surveillance.

Here are some things I have dealt with before, during, or after the installation of video surveillance.

1. Concern by family/friends/guests with regards to video footage outdoors and even more so for indoors. I do not have any cameras indoors and that is usually made clear up front to guests to ease any concern. While I may not have concerns over most guests entering my home, I believe it does send a message of general lacking of trustworthiness to visitors with any installation. The guest may theorize that the home has been vandalized or broken into in the past and may deem the residence/neighborhood unsafe. I'm not someone who likes to be portrayed as paranoid. I do genuinely enjoy having guests and friends visit my home. In general I convey to guests that the installation is more related to my background and a side hobby.

2. Neighbors I do not have a particularly regular or close relationship may approach and ask about cameras. My typical response has been that the installation was in response to an illegal activity that either took place on or near the property. With these neighbors I made sure I had no coverage bleeding into their property beforehand, so that if I was approached with a displeased demeanor, I could explain the coverage and local laws to appease them in order to ward off any escalation leading to the creation of a dispute.

3. Neighbors in good standing or I have a relationship with I tried to approach before the installation and either offer to aim cameras so that there was no coverage of their property or I could mask out any movement on their property. I tried to be proactive with these neighbors as convey the mutual benefit of any overlapping coverage if they opted for it. I found they were mostly open consent in providing coverage on their properties in exchange I would be prepared to provide footage when necessary.

Those of you who have cameras installed indoors at a residence. Has it ever become a point of contention with guests or their comfort level in your home? What have you done to acknowledge concerns over privacy? I assume if you are a hermit you probably could give 2 *&$% about neighbors concerns, but for the rest of the living world, feel free to share your stories.
 

nayr

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You have every right to photograph or film anything in plain view from your property or public property... this is how it is everywhere in the USA; the only local regulations that may apply are to security cameras recording audio.. you may not be allowed to record audio without putting up a written notice due to local wire-tap restrictions.

Strangers, neighbors and friends have no right to ask any information regarding my security measures; if they feel uncomfortable with any of them its not my problem and they are free to leave.. All my cameras catch some neighboring property and I took zero efforts to mitigate this or talk to those neighbors, even though I am in good standing with all of them.. I instantly become very suspect of anyone questioning my security, especially neighbors.. its none of there business and any scrutiny of my security measures makes me think your looking for weaknesses in it.

So for 1-3 on your list I try to ignore them if they express any interest.. or simply tell them to mind there own if they dont get the hint.. there's plenty of nosey old retiree's here whom watch the streets like hawks, there worse than a horde of hidden cameras! When I got a walfare check from local LEO for my son playing alone in the back yard because one of my neighbor's opinion was he was too young to be outside unsupervised I lost all care for the privacy of my neighbors. (the LEO even told me my neighbors should mind there own business)
 
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fenderman

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Holy crap...wtf a neighbor called cops when you let your kid play in the yard? Some folks a freaking retarded!
 

nayr

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yep, its apparently the norm in society now to hover over our children and forbid anything as empowering and creative as playing alone.. it has to be structured, planed, and organized by anyone but the children since they are inevitably going to be kidnapped or killed if they have make any decisions themselves.

/end rant

PS: You have no idea how much effort I had put into securing my yard so he could not leave it (nor anyone else enter it) and removing potential hazards from the yard before I felt comfortable to give him a a taste of freedom.. I think he was just about to turn 3yrs old and he was being observed from inside, unsupervised was merely an illusion for his own benefit.. Both me and the LEO were quite offended to be bothered with such nonsense.
 

vector18

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Lebeter, the law states you are allowed to have security cameras in view of public or common places. Anywhere that is not private. You are not allowed to use your video recording in a sexual manner, even though no one would ever know anyway, lol. If you live in a co op or a condo, there might be certain rules or regulations that they can have a court agree on that disallows you from having cameras outside of your home. If your neighbors complain to you, the first thing to do is put them at a comfort and let them know if anything happens within your cameras view and on their property, that they are more then welcome to playback the recording to help them out. If they still do not care, than tell them that your cameras only view your property. If they do not believe you, than start to show them that you are getting upset with their complaining and you are in all of your rights by the law to have these cameras even if they see their property. If they want, they can call the local precinct and ask for themselves.
 
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