Liability AND benefit (Applies to everything?)
Although it's a liability when someone else does it, there are all sorts of benefits to being able to customize a camera yourself.
The one that appeals to me is using the steady stream of data with low information density as the carrier for steganography --- thus using surveillance equipment to counter another form of surveillance.
To get a suitable data stream, point the camera so it includes some of the outdoors in its field of view; trees waving in the wind, shadows of clouds moving across the lawn, birds flying past... an empty room might not be good enough in itself. Or maybe a fishtank would do. I wonder whether spies will now start taking an interest in anyone with a webcam showing their aquarium, and wonder what they're hiding?
That being said... being able to reflash it without physical access, or at least a user-settable password, would be appalling. But the OpenWRT instructions make it look like that's not what's happening here.