Thursday, July 26, 2018

hi, don't mind me :)

I bought a new webcam last week.  My webcam is working fine, but I like to have a backup.  Meego uses my old webcam/backup, mainly for the microphone, when he's online gaming with his friends.  He needed to take an online test last week in order to test out of a certain math class for college.  That's when we discovered that the video on his/my backup webcam was on the fritz.

Take an online test to place out of a math class, and someone is watching. If your webcam doesn't work, you can't take the test.

Well, we just swapped out the fritzed webcam with my working one, and all was good.  Meego passed his test, and we wondered what it's like to be a proctor for an online test.  Do they really watch the whole time?  Are they looking at multiple screens/test takers?  What would they do if they see someone cheating?

I only connect my webcam when I need it for online tutoring.  For those with built-in webcams, do you cover it up to prevent the government from spying on you?

I have a student I've been helping with a college math class he's taking online this summer.  We were at the library yesterday, and he'd brought his laptop so we could work on his homework assignment.

As he was airing his frustrations with me, I was communicating my empathy:

"Yes, they could have explained that better"
"You're right, that's not a very accurate graph"
"blah, blah, blah"

At several points, we noticed the cursor on his laptop screen was spinning.

"They're checking on me", he says.

"Oh, they monitor when your logged in?", I says

"Yeah, we had to sign something that says we know and don't care when we enrolled in the class", he says.

I noticed the band-aid he had covering his webcam.

"Is that why you have a band-aid over your webcam?", I says.

"Yep, but they can still hear us", he says.

We continued to work through his homework and came across another poorly represented graph.  I made robotic note of it.

"Ugh, you'd think they would do these better, otherwise it's confusing", he expressed.

"I'm just your tutor.  I have no opinion".

Linking up this week with Mama Kat for the prompt:
5. Write about the last lie you told.


John Holton said...

I got a big laugh out of the cartoon.

I've unplugged my webcam. They don't need to see me.

Margaret (Peggy or Peg too) said...

I have a post it over mine here in my home office. I am called paranoid. Okay maybe but....
I don't know would spy on me but just in case is my thought

LL Cool Joe said...

Webcam, what webcam? Now I'm worried.

Abby said...

John, I don't think they need to see me either, nor should they want to!

Margaret, my husband put electrical tape over the one on the laptop. At first, I thought it a bit like the aluminum foil hat, but maybe not.

Joey, make a threat to the government. Then see who shows up. That'd be a good test, right?

Chatty Crone said...

Are you saying if you take an online class you have to take it with webcam watching you? Yikes. sandie

ShadowRun300 said...

All of it just weirds me out. My daughter is taking an online class this summer, and I asked her about a proctor. She says the school ( a community college) is so small, they don’t use them. I can see why schools would want to use them, but I don’t like the idea of being watched. So no online classes for me and no webcam for me.

KatBouska said...

I used to have a clothes pin over mine, but I guess someone needed it because it's gone now and I am AT RISK!

Abby said...

Chatty, yes. And stop picking your nose.

SR300, it makes me wonder what the "watchers" are doing. I understand proctoring for a test, but it seems weird to monitor when someone's just doing their homework!

Kat, I smell sabotage!

Linda Hensley said...

I don't have a webcam and don't want one. Isn't part of the joy of computers that you can sit in your bathrobe with messy hair?

Madamdreamweaver said...

I don't have a webcam. I have a desk top and it'd have to be a special purchase. However, on laptops, it IS generally recommended to cover your laptops camera eye, when you're not actively using it, because there have been cases of remote access being made of such cameras without the laptop owners knowledge and being recorded without their knowledge. A legal case in point was a couple who'd got a laptop from a certain well-known rent-to-buy company, then later learned that company's employees had access to the camera and were actively watching them. They left innocently left the laptop lid up all the time, completely unaware, and those employees were watching doing whatever in the house, dressed or not.

Abby said...

Linda, YES!

BNick, I heard a similar story of kids who checked laptops out from school to do schoolwork at home and were watched by the school district via the webcams. It's a thing.

Patty said...

No webcam here but I often get the feeling of being watched...and my conversations overheard.

The mere fact that, after you make an online purchase, that item or ads from the store's website appear in your news feed or in your browser. No biggie, because we all leave digital footprints on our devices, but after a conversation with the husband, the very item we discussed popped-up on my Facebook page. And, no. We were not anywhere near our computers..just our phones.

Someone...was listening. Probably Siri. I've never trusted her...