It’s sometimes said that one of the first things people do with any new media is use it to record and distribute porn. The easing of press restrictions in Russia, for example, has resulted in a boom in political and cultural writing, and an even bigger boom in hard core pornography.
So, of course the following: the Japan Times Online has a piece on banning cell phones in public baths:
If you’ve visited a public bathhouse in Tokyo lately, you’ve probably spotted this stern warning: “Bringing cell phones and other kinds of electronic devices here is prohibited as their use can cause trouble and misunderstanding among other customers.”…
Sunday Mainichi says the proliferation of camera-equipped cell phones coupled with the continuously improved quality of the images they capture, have been a boon for peeping Toms with a penchant for photography.
“It seems they pretend to read their e-mail while actually they’re taking pictures of the naked women,” the bathhouse operator says.
The interesting thing is that you couldn’t get away with this with an ordinary camera, or a digital camera. Or at least, if you tried to pretend to read you e-mail on your digital camera, you’d be caught pretty quickly.
Update, 25 July: CNN published this article on the phenomenon earlier in the month. (It also includes quotes from two people who are working on a project at IFTF.)
[thanks to Marina]