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Now we're being watched by Google, in even higher quality

In a move that is arguably antithetical to the usual rules of rock 'n' roll subversion - as in, probably don't mention the name of a global corporation in your songs - even Kasabian have picked up on surveillance fears with their latest single, Eez-Eh (opens in new tab).

Therefore news that the US plans to lift restrictions on detailed satellite images will no doubt fuel the Leicester rockers' crusade against our potentially Orwellian future.

Mapping services provided by Google and Bing will have access to satellite images of a higher quality than previously available, thanks to the US government move.

Companies had been denied use of images that visibly showed features smaller than 50cm, but with the control removed, the imaging firm Digital Globe said it could now sell images with features as small as 31cm.

Marc Dautlich, a lawyer from Pinsent Masons, told the BBC that he expected "repercussions" from users anxious about their privacy.

He also pointed to fears surrounding "national security considerations".

Some sensitive locations are currently blurred or obscured to mapping users.

Digital Globe, having engendered the change by an application to the US Department of Commerce, said that new satellites would be launched to capitalise on the ruling.

"Manholes and mailboxes" will be visible to users, thanks to the Digital Globe's Worldview-3 satellite, the company said to the BBC.

In the past, aircraft were required to accumulate images of sub-50cm resolution – an expensive and time-consuming process with risk of denial of entry to certain airspaces.

Read more: A look inside Nokia's Here mapping headquarters (opens in new tab)

Alongside benefits to the general public, the higher-quality images could help agricultural efforts and disaster relief, and could also provide internet access to unconnected parts of the world, the company added.