I'm an inquisitive person. I like to know what people are up to. If I'm on a bus, I like to listen in on other people's conversations and jot down any details of their private lives that they may happen to reveal unwittingly. I don't get any kind of perverse gratification from this. That would be reprehensible. The perverse gratification comes later when I collate the details at home on my database.
Therefore my curiosity was piqued a few weeks ago when I heard about the launch of Google Glass, a spying device you wear on your face that helps you spy on people without them knowing you're spying on them.
I've had a lot of fun over the years building up profiles of strangers via good old-fashioned eavesdropping but I feel now is the time to put my independent amateur snooping to one side, join the Digital Revolution and work towards a greater common cause: Helping Google know everything about everyone.
I want to be a bee. I want to be a worker bee, working for my Queen. Queen Google: With her intoxicating pheromone and adaptable logo. I want to fix her ingenious new appliance to the front of my head and start recording as much sensitive information as possible before transferring my findings to her ever-expanding proxy-hive.
There's just one problem: The design. I can't wear something that looks like I'm having a permanent eye test. They look like spectacles after a storm. I can't be the unpaid spy Google wants me to be if the design is half-cocked.
I remember being overwhelmed with jealousy when I discovered Google's Streetview cars were collecting wifi data. I wanted to be in that car. I wanted to be that car, absorbing passwords and social profiles and browser histories like a glorious, four-wheeled, authoritarian digi-sponge. Now after years of waiting, I can be that car. Wherever I go, I can plug myself into the Matrix and fast-track the words and actions of other human beings to Google's hungry servers via my Google+ account, once derided as the social networking equivalent of a neglected, half-eaten pot of Greek yoghurt at the back of the fridge, now an essential 'Google Glass Gateway' of personal details to be harvested as empowering data for our beloved Queen.
But I don't want to look like a dick. Google must redesign this wonderfully invasive contraption so that its army of unpaid spies can get to work. As it is, we're just twiddling our thumbs, staring out of the window and opening the parcels we've taken in for our neighbours.
Only the other day as I was crouching behind a cardboard cut-out of Daniel Craig, making a mental note of my Zumba teacher's food shopping in Sainsbury's, it occurred to me how handy Google Glass would have been at that particular moment; how a simple voice command would be turning the dietary habits of a part-time fitness instructor from Streatham into delicious royal jelly for Queen Google. (I mentioned this in one of my many emails to Google and suggested they might want to emphasise this aspect rather than the fatuous exercise of recording your child as you swing their stupid limbs around in the garden. Google have yet to comment.)
Unless Google get their act together, more vital moments such as the one in Sainsbury's will be missed. Privacy is on its way out but it will happen a lot quicker if Google Glass doesn't look like a rejected prop from a B-Movie. I want to spy for you, Google. Just make me look good doing it.
A sketch by Michael Spicer:
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