Apple recently was approved for a technology patent that could disable video recording at live shows. 

Photo: Apple.com

The patent was filed in 2011 and approved June 28 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The technology would use infrared beams to block phones it hits from taking photos or videos.

Concerts and classified facilities were the use cases cited in the application. Critics are worried that the technology will not only greatly reduce the number of free recordings of artists’ performances, but could be used by police or corporations to prevent recording of misconduct.

The technology still only exists at the level of theory, and now that the patent has been approved, work to implement it will likely begin soon.