An introduction to the debate between privacy and security in 360º

As part of my final MA project, I produced three interactive videos introducing the debate between privacy and security in the context of recent terrorism activity and changes to surveillance legislation.

The aim of the project was to explore interactive video, and to find a way of providing additional context to the viewer. The formats of the videos were divided by two definitions of interactivity; allowing the viewer to control the content viewed on screen, and allowing the viewer to control the direction of view. Under the first definition, I produced two videos – one using my own code (which I learned from scratch) and the other using an online tool (Thinglink). The second definition was achieved by using a 360º camera, and creating a VR version. A fourth video was made with no interactivity to act as a default for comparison.

A series of blog posts captured my progress throughout the production of this project.

Part of the project explored the ability to create the content, taking the point of view from the creator. I found very early on that developing a code for each individual video, from scratch, was not an appropriate use of time. And the money required to train existing journalists and producers in coding would likely be better spent on existing tools, or people with knowledge.

However my favourite element of the project was a surprise to me – 360º. I hadn’t experienced virtual reality content as a creator before, only ever as the audience. It was interesting learning the differences between VR production and ‘normal production’, and putting them into practice was equally as fun. I enjoyed taking the 360 creation beyond the project, exploring 360º panoramic photos (Instagram followers will know I’ve combined this with the carousel featureto create some great continuous posts).

The virtual reality video I made for this project is best viewed on a mobile device, or through VR goggles. But you can still enjoy it through a compatible web browser.

I’m remarkably pleased with the project, which earned a first-class grade, and would like to thank both Sir David Omand and Francis Clarke for their contributions.

The other videos from this project are available to view through the final blog post in the Privacy, or Security series, which you can read here.