2019 Surveillance Camera Policy Vote

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Sponsors

  • Ryan Pierce

History

  • Announced: TBD
  • Language locked: TBD
  • Voted on: TBD

Background

This vote changes the Membership Agreement regarding placement of surveillance cameras. At present, the board has the authority to place surveillance cameras anywhere to monitor public areas. To date, cameras have only been installed to monitor the building's entrances and exits and the server room. However, some public areas are more sensitive than others, e.g. areas in the facility where members commonly work or socialize. This vote requires a higher standard to place, move, or remove such cameras.

Research contained in the 2019 Anti-Theft Budget Vote called into question the effectiveness of cameras in preventing or investigating small tool theft. This vote was originally intended as a companion to that vote; it would remove the board's power to install cameras in sensitive public areas with the intention of diverting attention towards solutions that are more effective. Following discussion, other use cases of cameras were identified, including investigating tool misuse and investigating member disputes.

Any installation of a surveillance camera requires a careful consideration of the risks it presents vs. the benefit it offers.

While the Membership Agreement places strict controls on access to surveillance camera footage, one cannot entirely discount the possibility that such footage could be misused by an authorized individual, or disclosed via a security compromise. Areas such as the exterior doors likely have little value to a bad actor. However, cameras monitoring the interior of the building, where members work and socialize, has more potential for misuse. For example, such unauthorized access could be used to facilitate a bad actor stalking other members or compromising intellectual property.

Benefit needs to be considered carefully. Cameras are limited by line of sight and resolution. Further, effort is necessary to retrieve and review footage. Such effort may be significant if the time window of the incident being investigated is large. At present, footage must be reviewed manually by trusted volunteers, so the value to the organization of the investigation should exceed the value of the volunteer effort to review the footage.

This risk/benefit evaluation is difficult. This vote changes the voting process regarding security camera installation, movement, or removal, depending on several factors:

  • Building entrances and exits are already monitored. The loss of privacy to the membership here is small, as is the risk for misuse. AT the same time, these cameras may deter theft of larger tools. Entrances and exits, the exterior of the building (e.g. the alley), and infrastructure used by the camera system all pose the least risk to the membership, so the board has the power to place, move, and remove such cameras.
  • Other interior building spaces, such as where members work or socialize, are much more sensitive. Consent of both the board and the membership, determined by both a board vote and a member vote, is necessary to place, move, and remove such cameras. This prevents the board from placing such cameras over the objection of the majority of the membership, and it requires the board to make a case to the membership regarding why each new camera is necessary.
  • An exception exists for cameras required by contract, law, regulation, or insurance. For example, a new lease or a new insurance policy may require cameras monitoring the workshops. If such an event happened, then the directors, by vote, would have full authority regarding their installation, movement, and removal.

Language

The “Surveillance Cameras” section of the Membership Agreement shall be changed from:

  1. PS:One reserves the right to place surveillance cameras within the facility where necessary and appropriate to monitor certain public areas by a vote of the directors.
  2. Surveillance cameras shall be clearly denoted.
  3. All camera locations shall be publicly documented.
  4. Only the Board of Directors, DRC, or designated agents may have access to security footage on an as-needed case-by-case basis. Any instance of accessing camera footage shall be recorded in the following member meeting’s minutes and shall include the reason and individual accessing the footage. In DRC matters, where providing a public reason would conflict with confidentiality, surveillance footage access should be recorded in the process notes of the DRC for that raised issue.
  5. All camera footage will be kept for a maximum of 6 months, unless part of an ongoing or archive of DRC or Board proceedings.
  6. Members may not install recording devices or cameras in the facility without a vote of the membership or vote of the directors.

to:

  1. PS:One reserves the right to place surveillance cameras within and external to the facility where necessary and appropriate to monitor certain public areas, as follows:
    1. Cameras intended to record the building's entrances and exits, the exterior of the building and adjacent land, and infrastructure such as servers and network switches used by the surveillance camera system, may be placed, moved, or removed by an affirmative vote of the directors. Such cameras shall be placed, to the greatest extent practical, so that they avoid recording areas where members commonly work or socialize in the facility.
    2. Cameras intended to record areas required by contract, law, regulation, or insurance may be placed, moved, or removed by an affirmative vote of the directors.
    3. Cameras otherwise may be placed, moved, or removed by both an affirmative vote of the directors and an affirmative vote of the members. Following an affirmative vote of the directors, one or more directors shall sponsor the member vote. The member vote shall clearly describe the proposed location of the camera(s) and the area(s) to be recorded. The member vote shall also contain in its background information a justification for the placement, move, or removal.
  2. Surveillance cameras shall be clearly denoted.
  3. All camera locations shall be publicly documented.
  4. Only the Board of Directors, DRC, or designated agents may have access to security footage on an as-needed case-by-case basis. Any instance of accessing camera footage shall be recorded in the following member meeting’s minutes and shall include the reason and individual accessing the footage. In DRC matters, where providing a public reason would conflict with confidentiality, surveillance footage access should be recorded in the process notes of the DRC for that raised issue.
  5. All camera footage will be kept for a maximum of 6 months, unless part of an ongoing or archive of DRC or Board proceedings.
  6. Members may not install recording devices or cameras in the facility without a vote of the membership or vote of the directors.

Results

Quorum: TBD Present: TBD

For: TBD Against: TBD Abstain: TBD