Seattle Dive Bar Among First to Ban Google Glass, A Losing Battle Begins

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News Posted: Sun, Mar 10 2013 11:56 AM
And so it begins. Months before the average joe can even purchase a pair of $1,500 Google Glass specs, the 5 Point Cafe in Seattle--a self-proclaimed diner, dive bar, vegetarian/vegan establishment--has stated in no uncertain terms that it will not allow people to enter while wearing the specs.

In a post on its Facebook page, 5 Point Cafe also indicated that “ass kickings will be encouraged for violators”. Sounds like a charming place.

Google Glass ban
Image credit: StopTheCyborgs.org

Fox News pulled a quote from an interview Dave Meinert, the place’s owner, gave to radio station KIRO-FM wherein he proclaimed himself a “thought leader” and went on to say, "First you have to understand the culture of the 5 Point, which is a sometimes seedy, maybe notorious place. People want to go there and be not known...and definitely don't want to be secretly filmed or videotaped and immediately put on the Internet.” Yes, charming indeed.

Google Glass

Meinert has a valid point that there’s something creepy about people wearing glasses that can record everything the wearer sees--including you, what you’re doing, and where--and as a private business owner, he can (probably?) enforce his no-Google Glass rule legally. But he’s fighting a losing battle here.

For one thing, the second he says that he doesn’t want his patrons to be secretly filmed, everyone who walks into the place will now be making a point to surreptitiously film everything and everyone with their phones, because trolling IRL is fun. For another, Google Glass is coming, period; further, there’s no doubt that it won’t be the only such technology that emerges in the near future, and once a given technology takes hold, it’s nearly impossible to hold it back.

Is the 5 Point Cafe’s protestations anything more than a simple attention grab as opposed to an ideological statement on privacy? Probably not. Is this the last time a business will ban Google Glass? Not by a longshot.
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JFarrell replied on Sun, Mar 10 2013 12:47 PM

Maybe patrons would rather not be seen waving their handguns in peoples faces.

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RWilliams replied on Sun, Mar 10 2013 1:58 PM

I can't imagine that many people who will own Google Glass - even when it's dirt cheap - is going to wear them out to a club, bar, dive bar or whatever. It's not like they're a fashion statement. It's just another thing to break when you get too drunk and don't care about anything anymore.

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Joel H replied on Sun, Mar 10 2013 2:10 PM

I support the owner. Wholeheartedly.

You should have the right to create a business in which recording everything and everyone at all times for no reason than because you *can* isn't allowed.

I'm absolutely uninterested in being recorded or run through Google Glass. And "because it's coming" is not a reason to do something, or to allow it.

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RWilliams replied on Sun, Mar 10 2013 2:24 PM

Well said, sir.

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Notice how many people are constantly plugged into their $500 - $1000 "smart phone" in public, and you might reconsider your statement.

I think it's great that these things have been banned in the bar.

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sevags replied on Sun, Mar 10 2013 3:14 PM

I can definitely imagine people wearing these to all sorts of events and recording without anyone's consent. I know I'll be seeing these in Los Angeles nightclubs for sure, concerts, sporting events, and the one place I would love to wear them around recording, raves!!!!!! People will still sneek them in no matter where they aren't allowed and the busier the place the less noticed they will be. There will be many more places where google glass and similar tech will be band and understandably so.

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Dorkstar replied on Sun, Mar 10 2013 3:19 PM

I support the owner as well, however how hard is it to sneak in a spy cam and record everything? At least if someone knows they could be potentially filmed when someone walks in with google glasses on.

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sevags replied on Sun, Mar 10 2013 4:39 PM

That's true Dorkstar anyone can still invest in a spycam and do nearly the same but the difference is someone like that would be coming into the establishment with the intent on recording and perhaps recording something specific while if there are just average people casually wearing Gglasses not only could there possibly be more than 1 recorder at a time but they would be in place to record anything they wanted at any time even if that wasn't their intent walking in. This is just as true for cellphones, most of us read here on HH that there are establishments banning the use of cell phones and of taking pictures of your food to post online, but with Gglasses it's even more covert amd perhaps unnoticeable at all which makes me much more dangerous and more likely to be used versus cell phones today.

This actually bring up a very interesting question! How will people wearing Google Glasses be treated by those not wearing them especially since wearers will be in the minority at first?? I guess right off the bat the first thing I will most likely think when I see someone wearing one is are they recording right now?? I would start assuming anyone wearing one is automatically recording even if just walking down the street just as I already do if I see someone awkwardly holding their phone too high up in front of them? Would I assume they are automatically not paying attention to me because they could be reading something? I can honestly say for a fact that at least several of my friends probably wouldn't even want me wearing it while hanging out so I can definitely see many businesses not allowing them.

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sevags replied on Sun, Mar 10 2013 4:39 PM

.

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realneil replied on Sun, Mar 10 2013 10:00 PM

This is a continuation of the end of privacy as we know it.

Dogs are great judges of character, and if your dog doesn't like somebody being around, you shouldn't trust them.

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RTietjens replied on Sun, Mar 10 2013 10:12 PM

Banning the device is well within the bar owner's rights, just as requiring cell phones to be turned off in a movie theater is legitimate. However, “ass kickings will be encouraged for violators”.is a violation of law, and I sincerely hope some geek with more money than sense wears his device into the dive and subsequently sues for inciting violence. There's a reasonable exercise of ownership rights on private property, and then there's the Teabagger attitude that "I can do it because I'm right wing."

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