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GoPro Project Claims Technology Is Making People Lose Empathy For Homeless 320

EwanPalmer (2536690) writes "A project involving GoPro cameras and people living on the streets of San Francisco has suggests technology is making people feel less compassionate towards the homeless. Started by Kevin F Adler, the Homeless GoPro project aims to 'build empathy through a first-hand perspective' by strapping one of the cameras onto homeless volunteers to document their lives and daily interactions. One of the volunteers, Adam Reichart, said he believes it is technology which is stopping people from feeling sympathy towards people living on the street as it's easier to have 'less feelings when you're typing something' than looking at them in the eye"
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GoPro Project Claims Technology Is Making People Lose Empathy For Homeless

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  • Helping the poor (Score:5, Informative)

    by SuperKendall ( 25149 ) on Wednesday April 16, 2014 @08:00PM (#46775225)

    In San Francisco you "have to see the poor" daily as well. Hows that working out for them?

    The trouble with the homeless is that they are not just poor, there are usually multiple problems at work including mental issues... so seeing them and giving them money is usually not helping much.

    If you really want to help the poor I suggest going to Modest Needs [], that is the best place I've found to help the truly poor directly before they fall off the bottom rung of the ladder.

  • Re:plastic (Score:3, Informative)

    by mythosaz ( 572040 ) on Wednesday April 16, 2014 @08:04PM (#46775261)

    Also fewer and fewer people know the difference between less and fewer.

  • Re:perception (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 16, 2014 @11:26PM (#46776401)

    I dunno. I'm here in San Francisco now. Outside of my hotel (the Mosser on 4th near Mission) there were a couple (apparently) homeless men. They didn't ask for money or anything. No one was holding a sign. No one was calling out. In March I was in Vegas. Same thing. In Boston it wasn't quite so apparent (but maybe that's because Boston gets pretty cold so they go elsewhere). I was in Jamaica (the island) earlier this year and the poverty is at a level unlike anyplace else in the US. When I'm back home in Miami, people will call out to you. They'll hold up signs. They'll stand at your windows and look at you, sometimes even knock. I see it so often that it no longer even registers to me. It's every day on the work. It's when I walk outside to grab a coffee. It's pretty much every time I go out, I expect someone to be asking for money. (BTW, all this travel is for work.)

    But here's the thing: I'm not rich. I give when I can and even when I can't or shouldn't, but my account is about $108 from empty. I worry about paying all my bills each month (mortgage, insurance, groceries, medical). I have some medical issues that I cannot fix now because it would set me back $10K (rotator cuff injury requiring surgery and PT, tooth alignment, weakening vision in left eye). My roof is leaking. My wife's car won't stay charged and the estimate is $300 to replace the alternator and battery. My daughter wants to go on a school trip costing $200. All these things add up and I'm not rich. To provide these things, I work almost constantly. Now I'm not complaining about this; this is the choice I make every day.

    But damn, when someone comes up to me and tries to give me a guilt complex about not giving enough, the only thing I can think is, "Fuck off." I may be one of those walking down Mission ignoring you, maybe coming out of the MGM Grand, or reading the menu at a food truck in Austin. But many make the assumption that if I'm in those cities then I have to be loaded. Not the case.

  • by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Thursday April 17, 2014 @01:33AM (#46776787)

    Hey, I'm as extroverted as the next guy, I look at your shoes when I'm talking with you!

  • Re:perception (Score:5, Informative)

    by TheSync ( 5291 ) on Thursday April 17, 2014 @02:15AM (#46776931) Journal

    "Why the asylums were closed is anyone's guess."

    In California, the Lanterman-Petris-Short Act was passed "To end the inappropriate, indefinite, and involuntary commitment of mentally disordered persons, people with developmental disabilities, and persons impaired by chronic alcoholism."

    The goal of Deinstitutionalization was that instead of being warehoused in huge, remote institutions, mental patients should be returned to communities where, with help, they might achieve some function in society. Unfortunately there was not much funding for the second part, plus some patients chose the streets if they were not involuntarily committed. Thus many deinstitutionalized patients became homeless.

  • Re:perception (Score:5, Informative)

    by Dahamma ( 304068 ) on Thursday April 17, 2014 @04:25AM (#46777271)

    Ronald Reagan's tax breaks resulted in increased government revenue, is the thing. Voodoo economics actually worked

    Increased revenue but MASSIVELY INCREASED spending. So, no, it did not work at all and is still the current model of pretty much every administration after his (Republican and Democrat) as to how to spend way more money than they take in for short term political gain over long term solutions.

    Claiming the tax breaks themselves results in increased revenue is horribly conflating correlation with causation. It's much more likely the increased revenue was in fact due to the increased deficit spending, of course.

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