According to a report by CNET a proposed bill in the state of West Virginia, US, seeks to make it illegal for drivers to wear Google Glass while behind the wheel and what’s more, it doesn’t apply to Google Glass specifically but any wearable head mounted computing device. Similar to the reason for the prohibition of smsing while driving, the bill’s primary aim is to promote safety on the road with Google Glass seen as an extension of this dangerous habit, says Gary G. Howell a Republican in the state’s legislature.
While Howell himself is not opposed to Google Glass he says that, “I actually like the idea of the product and I believe it is the future, but last legislature we worked long and hard on a no-texting-and-driving law. It is mostly the young that are the tech-savvy that try new things. They are also our most vulnerable and underskilled drivers. We heard of many crashes caused by texting and driving, most involving our youngest drivers.”
Important to note here is that with a price tag of $1, 500 (about R13, 500) would “the young” that Howell refers to be the primary consumers of such a device.
Howell believes that the technology of Google Glass, like the ability to multitask and the availability of various integrated apps, is dangerous in itself. “When I choose to use the Google Glass and cross the center-line of the road because I’m reading a text,” explains Howell, “then my actions affect someone else.”
What’s more, Google Glass has already been banned in some establishments in the US more for privacy, than safety concerns. In its defence, Google claims that these concerns come down to people’s lack of familiarity and discomfort with the new technology.
Do you think that this is a legtimate bill and how would you feel if it was enforced in your city?