Watch Out for Google Glasses
Google Glasses will impact societal behavior from the moment they arrive. As soon as you see them, you're aware that you might be filmed. People don't like being filmed.
Yes, every smartphone can record you and take pictures. But you know when this is happening. It isn't a constant feeling that everyone around you is filming you from every angle. You see them when they do it.
Google Glasses are different. More than just photos and filming, what happens to this data?
Let's say that I'm standing behind the counter at a business establishment -- bank, fast-food restaurant, airline check-in counter, whatever. My Google Glasses might display the social security number, the general rap sheet, social media appearances, and so on, of the person in front of me.
Perhaps that's a good thing. Some people will think it's creepy, though. Can you imagine the bar scene when people start wearing Google Glasses? Within a second or two, you will have all available information about the person in front of you. Some of that information may not be so flattering.
Public places will have to come up with new policies. Hotels, airports, restaurants, gyms and schools will want some say in whether you are allowed to wear these Google Glasses on their premises. You can just hear the panic buttons after the first pictures from people cheating in school or filming in the locker room are released on YouTube. Conflicts about are certain to get very ugly.
Other dimensions immediately appear. What if future versions of Google Glasses are very difficult to detect in terms of looking different from regular glasses?
What happens when you walk into an establishment today wielding a video camera in the faces of the staff? In a restaurant, a bank lobby, or a gym? You will be asked to turn that thing off, and if you don't obey quickly, you will be escorted from the premises.
Google Glasses will make all social/public interaction highly awkward. You're on YouTube everywhere you go. A few short months after their introduction, Google Glasses could already be so widespread that you will be on camera once you stick your nose out your front door.
Privacy lawyers, saddle up!
The Google Glasses data captured in the form of pictures and videos will not only be used by the person wearing the glasses. The person capturing the images may want to "auto-tag" these media with the identities of the people in the picture/video.
Some people prefer to stay off the grid. They pay cash, they drive a car without GPS, they don't have a cell phone, and they're not members of online social networks. They have been able to stay out of most publicly available databases.