An old prison in which all the prisoners would never do anything bad having a sense a paranoia that someone is always watching them, it is called Panopticon
When you see a sign in the middle of the night that says "KEEP OFF GRASS!!" you stay away from it even though no one is near to see you it shows a sign that you have Panopticon
by uziman55 February 10, 2011
Panopticon (n)

Translated as "All-seeing", Panopticon is a photographic term, first coined by UK based artist, Ruski. It is used to describe a particular style of 360° panoramic images, rendered in a stereographic projection, such that the entire scene surrounds a central vantage point.

The unique perspective generated is instantly recognisable, though can sometimes be mistaken for fish-eye images. Photographs from outside, appear like a little planet, wheras indoor scenes can be transformed with ceiling structures encircling the scene.

The term was inspired by the original use in prison design, where the cells, and the prisoners within, all surround and are visible from a single central spot.
"During the 27th Art of Norwich exhibition, Ruski coined the term "Panopticon", to describe a unique style of photography."

"Wow, look at that awesome panopticon photograph"
by Art of Norwich March 28, 2013
Pan-(all) -opticon(observe)

A design concept where all areas of an interior space are visible from any point outside the confined area. Also refers to a unique prison structure built by philosopher Jeremy Bentham, allowing guards unobstructed views of inmates, without inmates being aware that every area of the cell is monitored. Panopticon could be used in a metaphorical sense as vulnerable, revealing, voyeur, or in general to describe watching someone living in a glass house.
Panopticon is a word only a smug, ahole would use, and it's only seen in print - never spoken. "Words like deskussion, comflict, panopticon, ...only chi-chi men would use dem words." -A.G.

Sorry, bad example. Here's another example:

"The capsized men were stuck in a watery panopticon where sharks prey." -C.B.
by Cletus Brown July 31, 2006

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