The Camera is Always On!

18 07 2008

By Martin Moleski

A video of the Rev. Jesse Jackson that circulated through the news media and video sharing sites this past week made me think about a discussion I’ve had with my brother on multiple occasions. The conversation basically goes like this:

Me: “Why can’t a person realize that when there is a camera focused on his face he shouldn’t say racist, sexist or derogatory remarks?”

Brother: “Maybe he thought the camera was off.”

Me: “The camera is always on, what an idiot.”

The world in which we now live means we have no privacy. With YouTube, Google, cell phones with video capability and computers that save EVERYTHING, your dirty laundry is going to get aired in some way or another. As a side note, I’ll inform you right now that just because you ‘delete’ your browsing history, temporary Internet files and e-mails, our government is quite sophisticated and way ahead of you and they’ll get the info they need – See Marc Dann, Elliot Spitzer for proof.

If you are a public official, or are currently campaigning to become one, be prepared to have each and every word scrutinized and compared to your previous comments. And when your opposition finds a contradiction or flip-flop on video you better be prepared to justify your statements. And it’s tough to do because once you start back peddling you only dig yourself a deeper hole.

So my advice to you is simple. First, always be aware of the fact that your conversation with a neighbor, relative or voter could be recorded, posted online and viewed by thousands of people without you even knowing it. Second, control your own message and be consistent. If you hate saying the same thing over and over again, then you’re probably doing it right. And, finally, even if you’re not running for public office, don’t make racist, sexist or derogatory comments. I know I shouldn’t have to say that last one, but look at the videos below to see some great examples of people not understanding that the camera is always on.

Be careful out there!

Senator Joe Biden makes racist comment
George Allen makes racist comment while waving to cameraman
Congressional candidate Kirk Schuring fears the City of Canton
Senator John Kerry can’t tell a joke