For security surveillance - does it make sense?

Discussion in 'English Only' started by EdisonBhola, Dec 13, 2012.

  1. EdisonBhola Senior Member

    Dear native speakers, I saw a sign that says:

    For security surveillance, a video recording system has been installed.

    I think it should read "for security purposes" or "for surveillance".

    Am I right? I have this question because I think we cannot survey security, we can only survey a place.

    Thanks all.
  2. entangledbank

    entangledbank Senior Member

    English - South-East England
    A noun + noun combination can have any semantic relationship between the two nouns. You can guess in many cases, but you can't predict for sure. Where a noun is derived from a verb, the noun before it is often the object of that verb: so crowd surveillance is surveillance of a crowd (it surveys a crowd). However, security surveillance makes perfect sense as surveillance for security. And, to complicate it, police surveillance is surveillance by police.
  3. Cenzontle

    Cenzontle Senior Member

    English, U.S.
    As entangledbank points out, the relation between the two nouns can be various.
    At the school in my neighborhood there are signs to direct the traffic of cars in which parents bring their children to school every day (yes!),
    and pick them up to go home in the afternoon.
    One sign says "Parent Drop-Off" and the other says "Student Pick-Up". There is no good reason why they disagree.
    (The parent drops off the student in the morning and picks up the student in the afternoon.)

    Regardless of grammar, I like your improvement on the word choices: "for security purposes".
    The word "security" makes many people feel safer, but the word "surveillance" makes many people feel that their privacy is being invaded.
  4. EdisonBhola Senior Member

    Thanks all! Thanks for helping us improve English, the most beautiful language on Earth. :)

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