Web cams: creepy or cool?

Web cams: creepy or cool?

I can't make up my mind about Web cams.

You know, the ones that show people and cars driving past a certain building? Some are set up so the viewer can control the settings.

While I know that anyone can see you walking down the street (or if you're a student, across the University of Illinois quad), it still freaks me out a little that someone could watch for you on your regular route.

On the other hand, web cams aren't much different from stores' security cameras.

I'll never forget Champaign County Sheriff's Lt. Ed Ogle telling me last fall that the average person is caught on camera about 10 times per day.

I was doing research on missing women during that particular interview. In that case, I guess it's good to have a record where people are - and aren't.

And sometimes, it's nice to see a Web cam view of a place you're fond of. I probably walked past Bradley Hall and Founder's Circle at Bradley University every day during college. I like glancing at that Web cam every once in a while.

Maybe that's true for viewers looking at the University of Illinois' Quad Web cam. That one just seems like it can zoom in pretty far.

But regardless of whether you think they're creepy, here are a couple more Champaign-Urbana Web cams:

- UI's Siebel Center Web cam

- WAND-TV's Urbana weather cam

Did I miss any?

And what do you think? Do they make you feel like you're being observed?

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