Dr. Steve Mann has been wearing a digital eye, of some form, for the last 34 years. He invented the EyeTap, which is a whole computer system, and carries a letter from his physician explaining the contraption that is attached to his head. On a recent trip to France, some McDonald's employees didn't care about his letter, and tried to forcibly remove his eye.
On his website, Steve (who has been called "the father of wearable computing") talks about a trip he and his family took to France. They were at a McDonald's in Paris on July 1st, when a McDonald's employee stopped him, asking about his strange camera-eye. Mann produced the documentation and after what seemed like acceptance, he and his family ordered their food.
Shortly after another employee appeared and allegedly attacked him, trying to pull the digital eye from his head. The problem - the device is permanently attached to his skull.
At one point there were three alleged employees surrounding Mann. He tried to offer his documentation again. He explains on his blog what happened next:
After all three of them reviewed this material, and deliberated on it for some time, Perpetrator 2 angrily crumpled and ripped up the letter from my doctor. My other documentation was also destroyed by Perpetrator 1. I noticed that Perpetrator 1 was wearing a name tag clipped to his belt. When I looked down at it, he quickly covered it up with his hand, and pulled it off and turned it around so that it was facing inwards, so that only the blank white backside of it was then facing outwards. Perpetrator 1 pushed me out the door, onto the street.
Because his eye is a computer system, Mann was able to record (rather high quality) images of the whole scene.
Mann has had no luck getting a response from McDonald's. He says he's not seeking money, but just wants his eye fixed.
The webite UberGizmo was able to get in contact McDonald's, posting McDonald's response on their site:
Hi Elaine – We share the concern regarding Dr. Mann’s account of his July 1 visit to a McDonald’s in Paris.
McDonald’s France was made aware of Dr. Mann’s complaints on July 16, and immediately launched a thorough investigation. The McDonald’s France team has contacted Dr. Mann and is awaiting further information from him. In addition, several staff members involved have been interviewed individually, and all independently and consistently expressed that their interaction with Dr. Mann was polite and did not involve a physical altercation. Our crew members and restaurant security staff have informed us that they did not damage any of Mr. Mann’s personal possessions.
While we continue to learn more about the situation, we urge everyone not to speculate or jump to conclusions before all the facts are known. Our goal is to provide a welcoming environment and stellar service to McDonald’s customers around the world
Below are images captured of the incident from his digital eye.