Animals have a right to privacy
We have all been captivated by documentaries about various types of animals,
be they cute and furry or extraordinarily alien. Wildlife documentaries are
a large part of the landscape of documentary TV. The filming of the wildlife
is just seen as a challenge and is never questioned on a moral basis, should we not be asking
'how can this animal be filmed?' but 'should this animal be filmed?' ?
Please cast your vote after you've read the arguments.
You can also add to the debate by leaving a comment at the end of the page.
Animals(like humans) want moments of privacy and public exhibition
We would not appreciate being watched in the toilet/shower.
Voyeurism is something we look down upon.
And moments of privacy/intimacy with yourself is something we value for ourselves and other human beings; why not for animals?
This disgusting treatment of animals should not go on; if it isn't good enough for us then it isn't suitable for them either.
People 'are' watched in public bathrooms; to make sure they aren't stashing weapons/bombs there.
We might see 'Voyeurism' as a bad thing but there's no denying the fact that most of us are guilty of it; either by watching pornography/Hollywood-films/most-films-from-any-country. Watching animal documentaries isn't the half of it.
And Although we value our privacy; we go through terrific lengths to keep it. There's no paucity in 'peeping toms','neighbourhood/neighborhood watch members' 'impertinent old ladies' in every neighbourhood/neighborhood.
They deserve to have their privacy considered
Animals have no interest in privacy
However, this argument is doing much the same thing. They are placing their human knowledge onto the template of an animal and assuming they are correct. However, humans can never make such assumptions as to how animals feel. In which case we should respect animals privacy because we will never know if we are offending them or not, and it is better to be safe than sorry.
Actually animals are aggressive when they are afraid or they 'play dead' to confuse the enemy.
Scurrying off should just mean they do not wish to be bothered.
Humans benefit from us seeing wildlife documentaries.
Documentaries show humans how animals live. They give us a greater insight into how animals behave and for what reasons. This in turn can lead to further research into human medicine and nature. We learn from animals. Surely this is a huge benefit which by far outweighs any notional sense of animals wanting privacy.
Um reality T.V, hidden cameras, security cameras,satellites, bugged phone conversations; Google views emails/searches, ; people are not asked before they are viewed/filmed/other-wise recorded. Actors are paid to perform; they can't perform against their own will; now can they?
Paparazzi/people photograph celebrities/people all the time without their permission.
we have learned a lot from animals in terms of camouflage, aerodynamics and spiderweb-research led to the invention bulletproof vests.
From fashion to hard science watching animals has contributed significantly all across the knowledge/development sphere.
Medicine cannot be based around animal behavior-isms.
For one, how animals behave is not reliant on medicine – unless we injected the animals and then watched – but this is an altogether more serious question into the moral viability of animal testing. This leaves us with the notion that the only real benefit that humans gain out of animal documentaries is entertainment.
When we have human actors who wish to see themselves on TV, why would we place animals on TV when we do not know if we have their consent or not. Given that the only positive we can see to animal documentaries is entertainment; this does not seem proportionate to the possibility of insulting an animal’s privacy.
Benefit to animals
If we see documentaries on how animals give birth, how animals die, why animals die, how animal conceive then we as humans will all have a greater awareness as to how to cure these ailments should we ever be confronted by them. Not many of us would know a number to call in an emergency for animal welfare.
However, via documentaries we may be able to work out some first aid before getting the animal to the appropriate domain for care. Given that the animals themselves benefit greatly from an apparent intrusion of privacy; surely we can see this ‘intrusion’ as justified.
There was a readers' digest article on how a child saved a snakes' life because he recognized the scale-pattern to be of a non-poisonous snake; a kind often confused with a venomous
snake of the same color/colours but a different order of bands.
Animal control spared the snake's life after the child showed them the relevant portion of his book.
So yes video/photo documentaries do save animal lives. Books on cat/dog behaviors have aided pet-lovers everywhere in rearing them.
Now think of how many pregnant animals you have come across in ordinary life. Think about how many injured animals you have seen lying in the road. Think about how many incidents you went over to help an animal and thought to yourself ‘My, I wish I had watched a documentary on this’.
The benefit to animals as I am sure you will discover then is minimal in comparison to how many animals lose their privacy.
animals do not like being watched up-close otherwise documentary makers wouldn't have to drug them and strap them with hidden cameras to get in on the good stuff.
Animals do not respect their own privacy
However, should we not take into account how an animal uses it's own privacy? If you look at how humans give birth, it is behind curtains.
Often the family will not be in the room only the father of the child and he necessary doctors. If you look at how humans mate, it is confined to the bedroom. If you look to how we go to the toilet in times where we have choice, we go behind closed doors.
Now, look at animals, animals do not hide, they show no shame. They mate in the open, they release their waste in the open and they give birth in the open. Given that this is how they treat their own privacy, why should we think that they value it? If they do not value their own privacy, why should we value it?
Animals 'do' hide and they do push away documentary-makers. But these people drug them and strap with hidden cameras to see their secrets worlds. Which really is wrong.
Awareness of endangered species will improve respect for animals
It is for this reason that animal privacy is neglected. We can never interpret whether an animal is private or not.
We will assume instead that the animal is scared as this is what we know of animals.
However, by broadcasting documentaries based upon animals we are raising human awareness of them. This brings issues into the public eye and this in turn means that humans have more regard for animal welfare.
This can help us, and has, protected endangered animals. As a result of these documentaries: People protest against animal hunters and fishermen who spoil a whale’s dinner. People take action.
This is how documentaries can ascertain a benefit to the animal themselves.
It's pretty clear that if an animal is digging itself into a hole or going into a cave to hibernate or camouflaging itself with its surroundings or has to be shot with darts to get filming equipment on it, that/then it wants to be left alone.
Be aware of your surroundings and know your enemy
What do you think?