Google Glass is now formally and officially banned in 56,000 movie theaters worldwide



Can’t say we didn’t see this coming, but Google Glass is now banned in a wide range of movie theaters worldwide. The Motion Picture Association of America and the National Association of Theatre Owners have announced a new policy that would effectively land you in a world of trouble if you’re caught with Google Glass on your head during a movie showing. The duo also bans the use of cellphones and other video recording equipment while viewing a movie.

It’s a move that doesn’t surprise us in a tug-of-war between content makers and content consumers. Alongside the Recording Industry Association of America in the music realm, the MPAA has fought quite diligently to make sure their members’ copyrighted material is kept from being illegally copied and distributed. Piracy is illegal, and it’s in their right to protect their interests at whatever cost.

The MPAA makes up six of the largest movie studio companies around the world and are responsible for a vast majority of blockbuster films that release every year. NATO, on the other hand, represents over 56,000 movie theaters worldwide. Many of these theaters have already began to ban the use of Google Glass at their own discretion, but making it a worldwide policy makes it somewhat officially official.

It’s a very interesting policy that might spark some controversy among Google Glass enthusiasts. Many would argue that having a recording device on their head doesn’t automatically mean they’re using the device’s recording features and that the wearable should be an acceptable accessory to use. Some would liken it to smartphones being allowed in a theater, except it’s pretty obvious when a smartphone is being used to record a huge display — not so obvious when or if it’s Google Glass.

Do Glass owners have reason to be upset? Maybe, but they knew what they were getting into when they joined the Explorers program. Heck, Google even warned you about some of the troubles you’ll come across as you champion the wearable flag to help this new emerging tech category find its way. Fight the new policy if you so wish, but don’t be surprised if theater staff end up calling the authorities over it because that is now their right.

[via Hollywood Reporter]

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

Samsung Gear S trots over to the United States starting next week

Previous article

You can barely see the bezel on LG’s latest display

Next article

You may also like


  1. haven’t been to the movies since the second Transformers film :)
    Built up my own Home Theatre system – murarahahahahahaha!

    1. Oh, the article left out an important detail. The MPAA has also banned you from watching movies in your house with Google Glass on, too. Sorry bro.

      1. lol.. doh!

      2. good one!

  2. I think it was expected but also the wrong move. Let’s face it, Glass wasn’t the cause of movie piracy and to my knowledge it isn’t accelerating movie piracy either. This could have been an opportunity for added content during a film. However at this point it’s a moot policy since there simply aren’t enough people using it. It’s not being used to pirate movies (when storage, quality and battery improve this could change but that won’t be any time soon) and it’s not big enough yet for filmmakers to be innovating towards, so, kind of pointless, just an inconvenience for the few actually using Glass.

  3. It will be interesting when someone with a prescription ends up filing some kind of lawsuit based on the Americans with Disabilities Act. That might be fun.

    1. A prescription for a computer on their face?

      1. I believe you can now get some with prescription lenses. Maybe I’m wrong, though.

        1. Google Glass doesn’t correct vision, so the ADA doesn’t apply.

          1. It does if it’s the only glasses they have with them.

          2. I guess you could always carry a small screwdriver so you could remove the part of your prescription glasses that the MPAA doesn’t like.


  4. This is the most retarded solution ever. If they understood how the cameras work, they’d understand that cameras pick up IR light that is normally invisible to the naked eye and on video it looks like a white light. Just blast IR light all over the screen and all video capture will be nullified while remaining invisible to the naked eye.

    1. Genius solution. Now THAT is forward thinking. Like someone else mentioned, Glass isnt causing Piracy nor accelerating it. If anyone at MPAA actually researched the product, they would know that the quality, storage and battery are NOT sufficient to adequately pirate a film (effectively)

      1. Now they aren’t. What about five years from now? It’s easier to set a precedent at the beginning than try to ban them after allowing them for years.

        1. You’re right. One day cell phone cameras may come with IR filters just like how many DSLR and mirrorless cameras already do nowadays. You can get a battery pack right now and charge up your phone/glass camera while you record. Technology advances and that’s why it’s important to understand it and deal with it rather than blanket banning anything. It’s a draconian measure to deal with new technology. Ultimately it will fail itself because the people in charge didn’t shift their paradigm. I personally think investing in a bigass IR light for each screen is better than looking like a fool for the next 5 years telling people to take off their glasses. Theaters don’t sell a good or service. They sell an experience. Whatever they do to taint that experience ultimately hurts themselves.

          1. The problem though is that even though you can’t “see” it your eyes still adjust to the effects of it. If you don’t believe me go purchase some 930nm filters and stare at the sun. Don’t worry you won’t see a thing. (Pun intended)

    2. they have IR filter lenses on all of them to filter out IR light because without it you get a red tinge. LOL

      1. You might want to reread what I wrote.

  5. Haha, as if Google Glass could last that long recording video. Mine can’t record for longer than 40 minutes with a full charge.

  6. This is more of a pre-emptive strike, looking towards future Glass-type tech that will have better quality video/audio reproduction.

    Besides, who the hell would want to watch a movie pirated w/Glass anyway?

    1. We’ll all be long dead before anyone manages to fit a camera into a pair a glasses that can pirate a movie in such a way that anyone would want to watch it. Hell, even regular sized cameras can’t pirate a movie in such a way that anyone wants to watch it.

      1. I used to wonder about that myself. Every once in a while my mother in law used to give us pirated DVDs she picked up at some flea market. My attitude was why would I want to watch such low quality video when the point of moving from VHS to DVD was for better quality.

        Of course, I’ve never really minded waiting for films to be released on DVD or even to come on cable if I didn’t feel like paying theater prices for them. I do realize there is a market for crappy camcorder copies of first run movies, so I understand the ban.

  7. Why would anyone want to pirate horrible remakes anyway?!? Maybe they need to concentrate on coming up with movies that aren’t complete garbage.

  8. Every thing that Google creates should be banned

    1. Here’s a list of their products, enjoy

  9. Really though, it’s only banned the same way as using a cell phone to record the movie is banned. If I were to visit a theater that had this rule in place I would just power down my Glass and I would be good to go. Worst case I would put them on my head or around my neck.

  10. I always wonder why people watch movies with cam quality. How can you enjoy a move with crappy sounds and graphics?

    1. Because it costs them $0.00

      1. That’s true but you can also download or stream HD quality movies for free so why waste time watching cam quality?

        1. They don’t know any better or don’t want to feel as guilty from stealing so they watch in the lower quality? Idk.

    2. Some people miss MST3K


  12. I wonder if you Google “Google Glass ban” you get banned from Google?
    If Glass was not so stupidly high in price might have been a good thing.

    1. The price is $1,500 so that they could have Explorers who really have an interest in it. By the time it goes retail, it’ll be cheaper.

      1. Yes we know that special people are different, they even have a special short bus for the Glass Explorers. SUCKERS!

        Does it make the realization you are a sucker easier to swallow if you keep telling yourself you are special and interested? I hope so!

        1. Not really sure what that has to do with anything…

  13. Would battery life even last that long to record a movie? Is there even enough storage to hold a movie?

  14. They should ban crayons too because the crappy quality of google glass in low lit theatre conditions is worse than a two year old’s crayon drawing. Actually they should ban two year olds and crayons.

  15. Even if in say 5 years the glasses actually advanced to the point of having the battery life and storage to actually record a movie like they fear, the quality would still suck. You think existing pirate cam films suck, try watching one recorded with a cam on someone’s head as they constantly fidget and adjust position. At least a camera can be held /somewhat/ stable, most people won’t hold their head in rigid position for two hours.

    Also in 5 years you won’t be able to tell at a glance that it’s a Google Glass anyway~

  16. Good. As a loyal Alamo Drafthouse patron, I fully support this.

  17. It kills me that so many comments ask who would watch cam videos. When did the U.S. become the only country in the world.

    1. No, the “who would watch cam movies” is coming from people like myself who can’t stand the horrible sound and picture quality. Nothing to do with thinking no one outside of America watches bootlegs. I’ll either wait for a 720p copy or go to the theater if I can’t wait.

      1. So if they know why did they ask? If that was an attempt at a rhetorical question it was awful.

  18. I can’t stand policy that doesn’t address real concerns. From this I’m to assume I can have my phone out and record the movie if I want. Why not target the problem instead of the device. It’s like saying guns are outlawed but not murder.

  19. You couldn’t bring a camera or a recording device in the theater anyways… this is nothing but a PR stunt

  20. Glass… check, book-bag battery pack… check.

  21. Movie Theaters are dying already. Netflix and HBO Go are better than them.

  22. Who the hell would even want to watch a movie that was recorded on google glass?!?!?!

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More in News