back to article SKYPE has the HOTS for my NAKED WIFE

My wife is parading naked in front of a webcam again. Here's the funny thing, though: she doesn't even know that the webcam is on. In fact, it's not even her computer – it's mine – and she's not doing it deliberately. Come to think of it, I wasn't even aware that my webcam was on until just now when the green LED illuminated all …

  1. TheOtherHobbes

    >You are only awoken from your CCTV-induced trance by the sales assistant slapping you around the face a few times while a small child in the queue behind you strains at his mum's hand and kicks you repeatedly in the nuts.

    Have you considered not living in Luton?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      Luton? Sounded awfully like [Newcastle, or place your favourite UK city here] to me....except maybe [Chiswick, or place your favourite snobbish area here] where both the mum and the small child will kick your nuts while smiling and insulting you in [french, russian, or place your favourite expat language here].....

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "One of the most devious properties of CCTV footage is that it is as *strangely compelling* as it is life-suckingly dull"

    I really do not it find it interesting, or compelling. Is this just me or am I in a minority?

    1. ACx

      Re: Poll

      Out of interest, are you also one of those special people for who advertising doesn't work?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Poll

        No, that would be me.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @acx Re: Poll

        Oh if only that were true....:/

      3. The Vociferous Time Waster

        Re: Poll


        Advertising doesn't work on me.

        Sent from my iPhone

        1. ThomH

          Re: Poll

          If anybody wants to know how to stop advertising from working on them then I know one weird old tip. Yours for a song.

      4. jake Silver badge

        @ACx (was: Re: Poll)

        Who, with a working cerebral cortex, pays any attention to advertizing?

  3. Bloodbeastterror

    "Stomach" "Gut" "Paunch" "Belly"

    But FFS anyone over the age of three who uses the word "tummy" should have the small finger on their left hand broken as a reminder never to effing do it again...

    1. Suricou Raven

      Re: "Stomach" "Gut" "Paunch" "Belly"

      I vaguely recall The Simpsons making just this comment - a brief joke when Bart uses the forbidden word, immediately earning a gesture of imminent beating from Nelson which can only be averted by quickly rattling off a string of age-appropriate slang.

  4. Mage Silver badge

    MS are making Skype unusuable

    QQ seems a good alternate.

    Don't leave webcams plugged in

    Put tape over built in ones.

    1. Alistair Dabbs

      Re: MS are making Skype unusuable

      Sure, why allow the American security services to read all your Skype conversations when you can let the Chinese authorities do it instead?

    2. chivo243 Silver badge
      Black Helicopters

      Re: MS are making Skype unusuable


      Really, put tape over a camera. I guess you're only paranoid until they really get you. If you have a fruity version of laptop, keep doing it, but kiss your battery good bye! Sleep may not kick in properly.

    3. SineWave242

      Re: MS are making Skype unusuable

      What I can't understand is why people use Skype when there are so many other alternatives. Especially if you just need to talk to your spouse or relatives. It's easy to install something else. The easiest being Google hangout. All you need is a Google account. However, I tend to use even more obscure and rare services for video calls. There is a choice, people. You just have to search around a bit. I'll never understand why people just jump the ship so easily onto what others are using. Just think with your own brain - that's what you have it for.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Seems a good alternative for PC/laptop. Tried on a tablet but too laggy.

    1. P. Lee


      I've found here in Oz the Windows version of Skype is too laggy - it spends ages hanging there while it loads adverts, apparently from a server in Siberia which is connected via acoustic coupler with LACP pigeons.

      The linux version, however, is as yet unencumbered with such atrocities.

      Fascinating. MS has given me another reason not to load their OS.

      1. The Vociferous Time Waster


        Two different operating systems give different results but still people blame the network.

  6. russell 6

    I have a plaster stuck over my webcam and mic. Only take it off when actually making a video call. Problem solved

    1. Alistair Dabbs

      I have a plaster stuck over my webcam

      That's just a sticking plaster solution, though.

      1. vmistery

        Re: I have a plaster stuck over my webcam

        I went for second fix - plastered over it

  7. Graham Marsden

    My webcam...

    ... has a built in cover which I only open when *I* want the camera to work.

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      Re: My webcam...

      It's called a post-it note.

      Successfully used during the last business teleconf when I couldn't figure out the baked-in opinion of how a camera control should work that some GUI designer had back when the code was written.

    2. jake Silver badge

      @ Graham Marsden (was: My webcam...)

      My webcam only works when I enable the silly, mostly useless thing ... Slackware & BSD are kinda useful when it comes to this kind of thing.

  8. jpb421

    Eyes drawn to movement

    The problem is we're biologically programmed to watch movement and even when nothing is happening there is generally some movement.

    Many years ago when I was a student, the local Pizza restaurant installed TVs (without sound) all over the restaurant. It was terrible - however witty and attractive your date was it was almost impossible not to stare at the screen which invariably seemed to be located in a spot behind the lady who would be deeply insulted that I apparently found soundless rubbish tv more interesting than her!

    1. SkippyBing

      Re: Eyes drawn to movement

      There was a sketch on John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme the other week about this where an enterprising head teacher had placed TVs in the corner of all the classrooms playing slightly out of tune subtitled Open University lectures while the teachers stood at the front of the class talking about whatever they wanted. It'll be on that iPlayer thing somewhere and be much funnier than I just made it sound.

      1. Jonathan Richards 1

        Re: Eyes drawn to movement

        > that iPlayer thing somewhere for the next four weeks. 1:30 to 2:50, but the whole thing is good!

        1. jpb421

          Re: Eyes drawn to movement

          Thanks for the link. I'm listening to it now - very good.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What I need is a USB stick that can act as a camera so every time someone tries to take a look they get a Goatse picture instead.

    For the moment, I'll just use an old cam and a picture - as long as I don't forget to take it down when I have visitors :)

  10. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    If only we had a time machine

    1) Repackage this article using actual paper and a typewriter

    2) Send back to 1975

    3) Have it published in OMNI or wherever

    4) "Hilarious ... Chilling ... Right up there with 'The Shockwave Rider' or any story of Philip K. Dick. New author ALISTAIR DABBS proves again that he can write a Sci-Fi yarn like the best of them. Seemingly random events of ordinary life in the beginning of the 21st century reveal as much as they hide about an imagined society run amuk and staring into the headlights of crushing progress. Shortlisted for 1975's Nebula Awards".

  11. tempemeaty
    Black Helicopters

    Now a Skype camera issue...waitaminute....

    That reminds me about spying fears with the XBOXONE. Microsoft wouldn't make their stuff capable of spying on people would they?

    Just wondering...

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Disable it.

    I build my own kernels (easy with Slackware) with no modules (all built in for the hardware on my notebook), and do not build in the webcam stuff so it will never work... not that I have ever used anything that needs it (or me) either.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Disable it.

      And you check every line of all the other kernel modules to make sure none of then sneakily include a webcam driver - or you could put a bit of black tape over it.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Disable it.

        Errr.... I don't build modules - they are disabled in kernel config.


        │ │

        │ If you want to use Webcams, Video grabber devices and/or TV devices │

        │ enable this option and other options below. │

        │ Additional info and docs are available on the web at │

        │ <> │

        │ │

        │ Symbol: MEDIA_SUPPORT [=y] │

        │ Type : tristate │

        │ Prompt: Multimedia support │

        │ Location: │

        │ -> Device Drivers │

        │ Defined at drivers/media/Kconfig:5 │

        │ Depends on: HAS_IOMEM [=y]

        Just don't enable MULTIMEDIA_SUPPORT - I just quickly had to say yes here to get the dialogue up to show you.

        1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          Re: Disable it.

          But that only works with modules that declare themselves to be video drivers.

          Whats to stop the milk marketing board (other secret government organisations are available) subverting a filesystem driver to also have access to your webcam?

    2. The Vociferous Time Waster

      Re: Disable it.

      Sure you did

  13. Graham Dawson Silver badge

    Oh don't get me started on the video "tutorials" for every damn thing. They're worming into some pretty technical areas that are far better served by a page or two of text. Video and images as accompanying illustrations to highlight particular elements of the process are fine, but if you only provide a video it's not going to be much use to a lot of people. A piece of text I can skim back and forth to see and understand the processes involved. A video? Follow it by rote. Can't search it if something doesn't quite go right and I need to double-check. Can't skip ahead to the part I need without faffing around dragging the time bar thing back and forth until I get it just so. Can't skip my attention between the information and the project. Can't move at my pace, have to wait for the video to get to the point... the list goes on and on and on.

    1. Elmer Phud

      Video tutorials

      They're best used for that moment where all you need is to whizz through until you get the the bit where you go "Ah, that's where it goes'.

      1. Wensleydale Cheese

        Re: Video tutorials

        This week's winner for video tutorials can be seen at the Raspberry Pi Quick Start page

        The cartoon character points out where the obvious things like USB, video and ethernet ports are but completely forgets to tell us one vital bit.


        It's the same in the written instructions by the way. They tell you how to build the thing using Windows, Mac or Linux and then jump straight onto the thing booting up.

        Spoiler: On the model B+ it goes underneath the board, at the opposite end to the USB ports.

        And oh yes, the video requires Flash, so I had to fire up the only system permitted to run that bug ridden fest (company policy and one I agree with).

    2. Kirk Northrop


      Oh, I hate this new reliance on videos. Give me some sensible worked examples and some nice api documentation any day. Especially as most videos are poorly recorded at conferences and you can't see or hear a thing.

    3. Number6

      I'll add my vote for the dislike of video tutorials. If I'm in an environment where I can't, or don't want to, use audio, or the bandwidth is suspect, a video is useless. It must be a generational thing, my son much prefers the video approach to a couple of pages of instructions. If it involves use of a Bash shell then the text approach has one other advantage - cut-and-paste of the relevant commands :-)

      The incoherent and very amateurish commentary on a lot of the videos doesn't help either.

      1. phil dude


        Video assumes you can see it - or that your device can. If google wanted to be helpful they could transcribe all you-tube videos automatically....

        Of course, this might get messy....


    4. phuzz Silver badge

      I can read text much faster than some youtuber can stutter it out, so I have no interest in a video tutorial in 95% of cases.

      1. Darryl

        I've found the one time a YouTube video helps

        Fuel pump died in my car last week. Instead of reading the Haynes manual (Secure the vehicle on stands, disconnect the negative battery cable, etc. etc. etc.) I watched a 5 minute YouTube video. The guy took the camera under the car with him, pointed out what to disconnect and how to do it, and how to get the tank out and back in. Everything looked familiar when I slid under my car, and went very smoothly.

        1. cosymart

          Re: I've found the one time a YouTube video helps

          Re Haynes manuals...lost count of the number of times they glibly say "just remove X" but fail to say how!!

  14. Gene Cash Silver badge

    I just use Linux...

    I can't get the camera on my laptop to work, and neither can the NSA...

    1. Number6

      Re: I just use Linux...

      How do you know? Perhaps they're just not telling you.

      1. Paul Hovnanian Silver badge
        Big Brother

        Re: I just use Linux...

        "How do you know? Perhaps they're just not telling you."

        Some laptops have a function key you've got to press. When you hear the voice come over your speaker telling you "Not that key. Second one to the left", you'll know you've got it.

    2. Neil Barnes Silver badge

      Re: I just use Linux...

      The camera on this Linux laptop doesn't work - because it's buggered!

      (It was buggered when it was the Mrs' Windows laptop, too.)

    3. SineWave242

      Re: I just use Linux...

      You're just incompetent. Admit it. I've yet to encounter a camera that doesn't work in Linux. I've got better experience with cameras on Linux than on Windows. Never blame anything or anyone else if you've been just too lazy to give a search on the web to it and see how you can make it work. If I hate something it is laziness to learn yourself and spare other competent people the trouble of writing 60+ lines of posts just to explain something simple to a lazy computer user who expects everything to just work as expected. This doesn't happen on any of the OSes I know, or it happens rarely.

      1. Irony Deficient

        I’ve yet to encounter a camera that doesn’t work in Linux.

        SineWave242, what about this one?

  15. Gordo Rex


    You say that the camera came on just as your half-dressed wife entered the room? Pix or it didn't happen.

    Mine's the one with the sticky mag in the pocket.

    1. Alistair Dabbs

      Re: Hmmm.....

      I imagine Skype must have the pics.

  16. Dr_N

    Webcam Disable Hack:

    Put a sticky Label in hole-punch.

    Retrieve punched out "chad".

    Stick over webcam.

    Job done.

    (It's the only way to be sure, apps like Cisco's Jabber and Webex seem to forget you've disabled the webcam.)

    Cheers for the Dredd references Mr Dabbs.

    BTW for a less intrusive VoIP app I recommend the Japanese app LINE.

  17. YumDogfood

    Yes, I went there and said "avatars."

    I wonder if we could do lip syncing & voice changing avatars instead? A Muppet Show Webex would be a hoot. Might have bindun, but I'm too lazy and caffeine deficient this Saturday morning to look.

    PS: Future Shock! The story of 2000AD -

    1. Beornfrith

      Re: Yes, I went there and said "avatars."

      This might (or might not) be of interest to you:

    2. SineWave242

      Re: Yes, I went there and said "avatars."

      That's a nice idea for a Youtube show. Something like "Spitting Image". ;) But the conversation should be rather witty... not the usual US racist or sexist crap... they just don't get the real humorous side of things.

    3. Vociferous

      Re: Yes, I went there and said "avatars."

      Just meet up in World of Warcraft.

  18. Number6


    My desktop webcam is currently on its side behind the monitor, pointing at the base of the speaker. It was deposited there by one of my cats, who decided that behind the monitor was a good place to sleep (in principle I agree with this, she's not on the keyboard or between me and the monitor if she's there). My laptop camera is secured with that reliable hardware solution known as a piece of tape.

    1. phuzz Silver badge

      Re: Cats

      Personally I just unplug my webcam, it just seems the simplest solution.

  19. SineWave242

    On the other hand, speaking of video communication, why just not give an e-mail a chance? You can take your time to write it nicely. Writing text is great. Video communication is completely different and more "down to earth". I sometimes prefer one or the other, depending on the occasion.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Big Brother

    Too much like hard work

    Lots of suggestions here for avoiding NSA scrutiny of you or your significant others naughty bits, but they are all just too much like hard work.


    I just keep my camera pointing up at the ceiling unless I actually want to use it.

    Although I supposed this link, printed out and taped over the lens might creep-out a few spys.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Nice try

    Did she really buy that story about Skype when she caught you perving at her over the webcam?

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Video chat software in enabling video camera shocker

    Finding it hard to get enraged about this

  23. fLaMePrOoF

    Clickbait :/

  24. squigbobble

    Thanks for the NSFW warning on the 'turned it on' link

    Dabbsy, you muppet.

    1. Alistair Dabbs

      Re: Thanks for the NSFW warning on the 'turned it on' link

      I'm part of The Reg's "Weekend Edition" now, pal. If you happen to be at work at 8am on Saturday, I can't help you.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Thanks for the NSFW warning on the 'turned it on' link

        took me a while to realise it was looped. It's been a while since I've seen that one, and running around to go through the gate again to make 3 people play the part of a whole plane load is just the sort of daft gag they would have thrown in.

        And then I saw the real gag, and I've been watching it ever since...

        Anon for obvs...

  25. Nelbert Noggins

    The description of staring at a CCTV screen showing nothing happening sounds like the Big Brother business model.

    Car crash TV if ever there was one. How can we get viewers?. I know, we'll show them live, erm I mean delayed so we can filter, video feeds of rooms with no lights on.

    The only decent person on big brother was 'Nasty Nick' and hats off too him. He was playing the game, with what I believe was the spirit of the game, and wanted to win... none of this 'lets be friends' crap... it was pure I want the money and I will play the game to get it. Says a lot about the audience that they didn't understand this.

  26. GrumpyOldMan

    Cover the cam

    I use a c-slide on ALL my laptops / kids laptops / wifeys laptop and their peel-off covers on the mobes. I insist on it. Have you never heard of RATs?

  27. herman Silver badge

    Just loop the incoming video to the outgoing video and provide the perp with a handy mirror.

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Other stories you might like