I was just gathering up the recycling this morning (around half an hour ago), on an otherwise ordinary day. I had sat down with a pile of unread newspapers and made sure I hadn’t missed anything obvious to keep for a more detailed read later. Then, I dropped the papers all in a plastic bag, grabbed a soup can for the metal recycling box, and stepped out into the cul-de-sac… to see a black car, with a very large roof ornament, making a turn and pulling away. On the back of the car, a small logo proclaimed ‘Google’. I had witnessed the passing of the Google Street View Car, continuing an extended roam around Britain (and Europe).
It would seem spotting this elusive vehicle has become a bit of a sport. In America, Street View has raised privacy fears, catching fleeting visions of our streets, homes, gardens – and just what might be happening through the window when the car passes. In the UK, despite some initial concerns, the Information Commissioner’s Office approved Street View back in July.
So, that leaves me wondering now whether I’ll make an appearance myself, a vague shape in the porch gathering up the newspaper recycling bag, or just opening the door to step out into my drive way. Thankfully, I wasn’t doing anything too embarrassing – something others cannot claim across the Internet, like the Aussie drunk.