Be sure to smile for the camera the next time you walk into a bar, motel or brothel in Ecuador.
In a Big Brother-like effort to improve security, the Ecuadorean government has ordered all nightlife establishments across the country install security cameras on their premises by the end of the month.
The cameras will be a requirement for business owners of cabarets, nightclubs, massage parlors and the country’s popular in-and-out “love motels.”
The new policy requires cameras be placed in public access areas, including entrances, exits, waiting rooms and hallways. The footage will be archived for six months and accessible to government authorities if they request it.
The policy aims to “strengthen security and social peace,” according to a statement from Ecuador’s Interior Ministry. Government officials say the cameras will help crack down on crime.
Skeptics, however, wonder if the ubiquitous cameras aren’t meant to creep on whose coming and going at the love motels, establishments that rent rooms by the hour, or half- hour for the overly excited.
“Only in Ecuador would they put cameras in motels! What level of voyeurism! How disgusting!”
“A shout out to everyone who is taking advantage of the last few days of motels without cameras. Only here in Ecuador!”
Others poked fun at the policy.
“A couple dresses up to avoid being filmed at a motel in Ecuador.”
“If you go to a motel in Ecuador, for privacy, do it in the dark, I doubt the government’s cameras are infrared.”
In recent years, President Rafael Correa has mandated the use of surveillance cameras in local taxis and buses, on street corners and in the country’s schools.