What does surveillance mean to you? Does it evoke Snowden, closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras, or google (and now facebook) listening in to your conversations?  Who is watching us, and should we care?

$15 & up/person
Experiential 2.5 Hours Suitable for ages 14 and up

Interested in privacy, surveillance or anonymity?

Introduced through the stories of various people that have come and (mainly) gone through our newsfeed in recent years - be they artists, journalists, as well as regular and more famous citizens - we examine surveillance, privacy and monitoring concepts in 21st century Canada. We start the tour in front of the original "speakers' corner" in front of CTV's building in the Byward Market, thinking about the evolution of what it means to be in the public eye; as we continue our stroll through the downtown core, we'll be on the lookout for instruments of surveillance, talk about tactics of obfuscation, and discuss what it means to be seen, to be invisible, and to be very closely watched.

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Scheduled tour
Happens monthly.
  • Printed souvenir postcard
  • Maximum of 25 people on tour
Private tour
Minimum booking: party of 3 people. Happens if you request.
  • Tour content is tweaked on the spot to cover your interests
  • Printed souvenir postcard
  • Maximum of 8 people on tour
  • Follow-up additional resources by email
Customized tour
Minimum booking: 1 person (or more). Happens if you request.
  • Pre-tour chat with your guide to discuss your interests in topic (optional)
  • Content customized to your interests
  • Printed souvenir postcard
  • Your group only on tour
  • Follow-up additional resources by email

Request a private or customized (de)tour
September 2022
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun

Stops along the way (preview):

CTV building, Stingrays in the ByWard Market, Parliament Hill, and the Canadian Parliamentary Press Gallery.

Start - 87 George St. (CTV, Byward Market)

We'll think about the evolution of what it means to be in the public eye.

Mid-point - Wellington/Metcalfe St. (Prime Minister's Office)

We'll visit Ottawa's highest density of CCTV cameras per square inch, thinking about who gets to see all this footage.

End - Kent / Queen St. (former Privacy Commissioner's Office)

We'll talk about bio-hacker artist Heather Dewey-Hagborg, FindFace and PIPEDA, and go on an evidence-gathering mission.

Dan Monafu

Your tour guide
Dan Monafu thoroughly enjoys strolling through the city thinking about it from one particular lens. Surveillance and privacy issues have long been of interest to him, and he’s eager to hear if a public discussion on this will resonate with his fellow Ottawans, Canadians and visitors to Ottawa alike. Dan is one of Ottawa (de)tours’ co-founders. He has co-developed two other (de)tours – Banking and Mall Ratting – but has not yet had the pleasure of leading one until now.
“Ottawa has many attractions to offer but nothing is similar to the walking tours offered by Ottawa (De)tours. These tours are not only for visitors to the capital but to locals as well. I did a brand new tour on surveillance where we discovered how surveillance is omnipresent in Ottawa. The tour led to interesting discussions and exchanges between the guide and the participants. I highly recommend it.”
Martin D.
Tripadvisor review, May 2017
“Really enjoyed the surveillance tour with Meg. She was very knowledgeable about the subject, and very engaging. Sparked a lively debate, which we found to be fun and interesting.”
Tripadvisor review, September 2017

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