Is there anybody out there…?

To say that Endemol’s baby, “Big Brother” is a run away success would be an understatement. It is a phantasmagoria of horrors – psychological bullying; cloying desperate peer approval; titillation and possibly most of all – vicariousness. There but for the grace of God go I…

 And yet, of course, this is precisely its obsessiveness: no matter how high our IQ’s, we are gripped – at least for the highlights show. We twist around so that we can hear one housemate bitch and snipe about another. We find ourselves bizarrely concerned about how privacy can be maintained for bathroom functions (‘are they supposed to hide behind that screen?!’)

Of course, all this is a far cry away from George Orwell’s quasi apocalyptic vision, as expressed with slightly more eloquence in “1984”. The origin of the phrase foresaw the constant surveillance that has inveigled its way into our life – installed, we are to believe for our own good. Our own protection. Seriously oblivious to the fact that we have now subconsciously modified the way we present ourselves.

This is not a mistake – this is not an exaggeration: we can see the motorist scan the road ahead as he approaches the lights…what will happen if I run them? Is there a CCTV to capture me? The moral of the story here is not the avoidance of surveillance, but the ignorance of the fact that you’re likely to run into the other guy coming the opposite way, with precisely the same intent…


Author: Damian Merciar

Damian Merciar is Managing Director of Merciar Business Consulting,, a niche business economics consultancy founded in 1998. He has over twenty years experience in the areas of commercial Business Strategy. He is experienced in the transition environments of nationalized to private sector state utilities and the senior practice of commercial management, advisorial consultancy, and implementation. He has carried out policy advisory work for government ministries and been an adviser to institutional bodies proposing changes to government. He holds an MSc Economics from the University of Surrey’s leading Economics department and an MBA from the University of Kent. Also attending the leading University in the Middle East, studying International Relations and Language, for which he won a competitive international scholarship, and has a BA (Hons) in Economic History and Political Economy from the University of Portsmouth. He is currently based in London.

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