A body camera is a devise that is attached to you throughout the day as you complete your work day tasks. The camera records audio and visual and virtually ‘sees’ everything that you see. The information from the camera is downloaded and saved at the end of each day to be reviewed if needed. There have been many studies, discussions, investigations and trials surrounding police officers wearing a body camera as a regular function of their uniform. Some places have put this into effect, while others are conducting field trials to investigate how effective they are.
In the news we have seen how someone using their phones to record an altercation between an authority figure and an individual can greatly impact public opinion, court cases and in the future how authority figures respond on the job.
Recently, I was at the doctors office and after waiting over two hours past my scheduled appointment time my doctor came in with a resident doctor. Now, normally, this doctor is very abrupt with me, rarely answers my questions, and will leave the room as I am asking questions with me calling after him going, ‘wait, are we done? I have more questions? Are you coming back?’ (he never comes back). So on this day he comes in with his resident and suddenly has all the time in the world to pull up a chair, speak to me directly, answer questions, discuss concerns and refer me for further testing. Was this because the resident was there? Had to go back to the same doctor a week later and sure enough he was back to his abrupt, monosyllable answers and exiting the room as quick as he could.
So this lead me to thinking about how we all act when we are doing our job and when others are around watching us do our job. What would happen if we all had to wear body cameras at work? Would we work more efficiently? Less time browsing the internet, coffee breaks, chatting about last nights t.v. show, naps at our desk, well you get the picture. Would we all be more productive if we had to wear body cameras that recorded our moves?Take it one step further would we be kinder and watch our words if the body cameras recorded audio as well?
I am not advocating for or against body cameras in any profession, however it is an interesting thought. How do you act when someone is watching vs when you are working alone?
What if we were to take this one step further and have everyone wear body cameras as they went about their lives. Would people be kinder to others on the street? Less shoving on the subway? Imagine an audio and visual recording of your at home day to day life?
If we all lived our lives as though someone was watching how would that change society? I think for the better. I am not signing up for a body camera, however being mindful of my actions, thoughts and words is something I can do as my small part to be held accountable to how I behave in society. Try spending a day as though someone was recording your actions, how would this change how you interact with others?