Venice becomes ‘Big Brother’ as the city implements a system that tracks tourists’minute by minute.’
In an effort to combat overtourism, VENICE is purportedly tracking tourists using their cell phone data. Hundreds of surveillance cameras are also being used to track guests’ every move.
The cameras were originally put to keep an eye on Venice’s waterways for crime and dangerous boats. However, they are currently employed to track visitors so that administrators can notice and disperse crowds and monitor mobility.
Officials in the city’s control room examine visitor phone data to track their age, gender, country of origin, and location.
Tourists’ movements are tracked by surveillance cameras, which allow officials to track their route around Venice.
“We know minute by minute how many people are passing and where they are going,” Simone Venturini, one of the city’s top tourism executives, told the New York Times. We have complete command over the city.” On busy days, the phone data will be used to monitor crowds and alter costs for proposed airport-style entry gates.
Fines for entering the city may be as high as ten euros (£8.54) per day, with tourists required to enter through the gates.
Another important reason for the thorough tracking is to determine how many tourists are day visitors.
Day visitors are expected to spend little time and money in Venice, and are a group that officials want to target with the new penalty.
Luigi Brugnano, the city’s mayor, has stated that his goal is to make the city more livable for Venetians.
Tourists have been dubbed a “plague” in Venice, which is grappling with acute crowding, sky-high rents due to Airbnbs, and pollution from cruise ships.
“Either we are pragmatic or we live in the realm of fairytales,” said Paolo Bettio, the CEO of the organization that handles the data.
The intensive tracking of persons by local officials has raised concerns among data and privacy specialists.
According to Luca Corsato, a data manager in Venice, no other city uses tracking as extensively as Venice.
“It’s harmful to give the impression that everyone who enters is branded and herded,” he remarked.
In response to privacy concerns, Venice officials stated that all tracked data is collected anonymously.
The tracking, proposed access gates, and costs to the city divided Venetians.
“I don’t like the thought of being continually scrutinized,” said Cristiano Padovese, a waiter. “Brinkwire Summary News,” on the other hand.