Apple Patents Tech to Combat Concert Pics and Vids

Photo by Bareform

If you’ve been to a concert in the past few years, you’ve most likely noticed an increasing number of fans facing front, glowing smartphone or digital device overhead, capturing grainy, jerky video — or photo after shitty photo. It seems that more and more, concertgoers are obsessed with documenting a live experience to the point of missing it entirely in the present moment. But what if the ability to film or snap pics were to disappear?

As noted in the Daily Mail, Apple recently filed a patent on technology that would disable an iPhone camera by using infrared sensors placed within a venue. Given the company’s track record of generally making devices more user-friendly and compatible, this seems like a step in the wrong direction. What gives?

The dirty dollar, that’s what. Broadcasters and record labels who have bought exclusive distribution rights are squawking about fan footage popping up on YouTube. Okay, okay, we all know piracy is bad. Or at least it’s bad if you get caught. And we’re definitely sick of being stuck behind the guy who seems hellbent on filming the whole damn show instead of just watching it. But what of the gems that such dedication has brought us? How else can I watch Amy Winehouse wasted in Belgrade or Lady Gaga falling off of a piano mid-song?

When it comes to questions of fair use, short clips can technically be considered safe ground as they’re rarely of high enough quality to impact rights-holders’ sales of professional grade audio and video recordings. And furthermore, if and when this technology comes to pass, how long will it be before someone simply creates an app that overrides or sidesteps it? What do you think: Is preventing photos and videos on smartphones a good idea?