This is an important issue. I will most likely be in lock step with Oldman, Fr8dog and his former FAA accident investigator friend and others opposing the cameras. After the NTSB finalizes an accident investigation the media will surely sue for access to the tapes citing the public's right to know.
I am a professional. For all of you wondering what we do in the front office... I have nothing to hide, every word I speak, every bad joke I tell, is already being recorded. Improve the fidelity of the microphones and install the latest DFDRs and investigators have all of the info they need to reconstruct the final moments (as mentioned in my previous post, over 400 parameters monitored in the A319/320/321 I fly). I believe the AA Cali crash voice recorder tape got into the hands of the media because the same US laws and control of the data did not exist at the scene in Colombia.
Additionally, I am not up there smoking pot, nipping at the bottle, or lighting a crack pipe; I am already tested for that too. Clean, I might add.
For those comparing video surveillance in the workplace, this is not video monitoring of the cash drawers at Taco Bell and can not be justified the same way. Maybe I can get away with a bag of peanuts and a Diet Coke... . I am even apalled to hear that some of our maintenance people are being recorded (previous posts). I hope that this is not direct monitoring of job performance and maybe just a way to protect their tools from theft.
This is potentially a recording of the last moments of life for some. Imagine for a moment a video of the cockpit of TWA800. Loss of pressurization, all electrical, hydraulics, etc. If the video continued to run you would see three men frantically pushing, pulling, maybe screaming to regain control as the view out the windscreen alternated between ocean and sky. I don't think they knew the rest of their aircraft was a streaking fireball somewhere behind them. I doubt that they even lost consciousness before hitting the water. (SPECULATION ONLY). Someone, anyone tell me what you would learn in that video that was not already pieced together by existing methods and an incredible investigating team. This was even an older FDR. Same goes for Locherbie (sp?) Give me one extra minute thinking about those people before reading on...
OK, I thank you and their families may also. As you can see I am not in favor of video and it would take an incredibly convincing arguement for me to modify my position. I have not yet read that arguement in this forum (keep trying, that is what this forum is about). If video is jammed down my throat, I would still continue to fly. I am not sorry for my view, but I am terribly sorry for my rant. Thanks for getting this far.