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John_Brian_K

Digital Advertising - Are "They" Listening?

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Just now, Gehringer_2 said:

I imagine most people would be surprised to learn that unless they turn it off, their phone reports their location full time as well.

Perhaps. I think people are well aware of location services, but maybe not. 

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I like that the Hoka One One girls keep showing up on my facebook ads.  They finally got something right.  

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LOL. Umich must be monitoring my activity because they felt the need to tweet this 20 minutes ago. 

 

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When you use something for free then you are not the customer but the product being sold.  

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2 minutes ago, Oblong said:

When you use something for free then you are not the customer but the product being sold.  

Using something for free doesn't give them the right to what amounts to a pretty big invasion of privacy. Unless it's in the t&c, but then we would already know it's happening. Also, phones aren't free. Neither is Alexa or any other piece of hardware accused of listening and probably selling your conversations, if true. 

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I’m sure it’s buried in there.  Might not be Apple but could be Facebook or instagram. Or google.  I’ve had cases where I’m sure the mic was picking up on things.  But it’s also true that these ad companies have us so well documented that they know us better than we know ourselves so when we see the ad it’s not the mic but other factors.  Who knows. 

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Again, people pick those apart. If it were in there, we'd know about it IMO. 

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7 minutes ago, Yoda said:

 selling your conversations, if true. 

recording conversations would probably be a bad return on bandwidth cost exercise, but keyword indexing, traffic analysis, and other kinds of profiling are not. It's about follow the money. Who pays the bill? What is an advertiser interested in? They don't care to know if your Aunt Jane's cat coughed up a hairball at her bridge club, but of course they do care to know whether you have a cat.

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I also think the source code on something like this would also be revealed. The more I think about it, the less likely I think it is that they're doing what is being presented. Someone would be able to show proof of it by now. Whether in the T&C or via source code. 

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1 minute ago, Gehringer_2 said:

recording conversations would probably be a bad return on bandwidth cost exercise, but keyword indexing, traffic analysis, and other kinds of profiling are not. It's about follow the money. Who pays the bill? What is an advertiser interested in? They don't care to know if your Aunt Jane's cat coughed up a hairball at her bridge club, but of course they do care to know whether you have a cat.

Of course. I think we all know that. I'm speaking strictly in terms of me having a conversation with my dog about Alaska and then an ad for Alaska popping up on my phone, suggesting that the OS or whatever was "listening" to an audible conversation and creating an ad based on that. I don't think that's what happening. 

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1 minute ago, Yoda said:

I also think the source code on something like this would also be revealed. The more I think about it, the less likely I think it is that they're doing what is being presented. Someone would be able to show proof of it by now. Whether in the T&C or via source code. 

IDK, read a Microsoft T&C, they are telling you they are using your data to target you.

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Just now, Gehringer_2 said:

IDK, read a Microsoft T&C, they are telling you they are using your data to target you.

Do they specify the specific data?

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2 minutes ago, Yoda said:

Of course. I think we all know that. I'm speaking strictly in terms of me having a conversation with my dog about Alaska and then an ad for Alaska popping up on my phone, suggesting that the OS or whatever was "listening" to an audible conversation and creating an ad based on that. I don't think that's what happening. 

when you watch your browser do it all day long, I don't know why you would expect other pieces of the infrastructure not to. From a strictly logical perspective, why is there an assumption of different treatment for what you say as compared to what you type when they are both being used as input data in the same way?

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4 minutes ago, Yoda said:

Do they specify the specific data?

guess i don't follow the question - I think what I have seen only refers to them gathering data for directed advertising. Don't remember how it may have been qualified. It's right there in the privacy settings for Win10 though, it you don't turn it off it's gathering something or another..... 

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4 minutes ago, Gehringer_2 said:

when you watch your browser do it all day long, I don't know why you would expect other pieces of the infrastructure not to. From a strictly logical perspective, why is there an assumption of different treatment for what you say as compared to what you type when they are both being used as input data in the same way?

One I'm specifically telling the device, the other I'm not. There's a big difference between the two. Why would you take them to be the same thing?

Again, it wouldn't surprise me. I'm merely noting that we would see proof of that somewhere. Someone would have found it by not. As Shelton said, that would be a big story. 

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8 minutes ago, Yoda said:

One I'm specifically telling the device, the other I'm not. There's a big difference between the two. Why would you take them to be the same thing?

But the fact remains that the device has to be listening all the time in order to be able to respond - it never knows that you are not talking to it until it has already heard what you said. That is the irreducible temptation for the network. ?

The counter point would be that when probably only a handful of people in the country could even understand or explain the algorithms being used - it makes it hard to turn it into any kind of story. 

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its listening all the time for the vocal prompt for it to listen again and process what is said after the prompt. 

Yoda put it well. A conversation with a spouse or client or coworker or friend is not an active input into whatever device (or software on the device) that you are using. 

This would be the equivalent of widespread phone tapping or bugging your home. 

Fing me a TandC that says your phone can listen to you and harvest data without a prompt. 

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17 minutes ago, Shelton said:

This would be the equivalent of widespread phone tapping or bugging your home. 

 

yes it would, wouldn't it?

Almost as bad as feeding your personal site news and commentaries planted by agents of a foreign power before an election.....but that couldn't happen under the T&Cs......

xD

(just having some fun here ....)

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to be fair, Apple appears to be somewhat of a white hat among the rustlers (or at least is trying to appear to be):

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-01-30/facebook-shuts-controversial-program-to-pay-apple-users-for-data.

then again - from the same article, who know what third parties are doing?

Quote

Apple suffered its own black eye earlier this week when a bug was discovered in its FaceTime app that essentially let a caller eavesdrop on another without their knowledge; Apple temporarily shuttered the FaceTime group chat service to mitigate the problem.

 

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14 hours ago, Oblong said:

 But it’s also true that these ad companies have us so well documented that they know us better than we know ourselves so when we see the ad it’s not the mic but other factors.

I think I mentioned this, but my son took a course over the past summer dealing with network / node logic for programming, which was a fancy way to say 'here's a roadmap to effectively market in a social media environment'.

Basically by taking some generic demographic information, knowing who people interact with (e.g. friends with on facebook, listed activities, etc.), and what establishments people frequent based on time in various locations, it is possible to separate a large population of people into a large number tight clusters, identify opinion makers in the clusters, and target marketing accordingly.

In any event, they did a demonstration for parents on the last day of the camp and it was impressive or scary, depending on your perspective, the level of detail this type of analysis can go into and make recommendations based on information easily mined off your phone.  Something like 8 out of 10 recommendations were on point for me.

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So apparently you cannot use your phone (on android with a Samsung) unless you give the camera permission to use the mic.  I just tried my camera and you cannot open the APP unless it has permission to the mic.

And to continue on this discussion.  I am sure we have all had similar situations to the one I experienced yesterday.  I spent most of the night trying to remember if I typed ANYTHING into any of MY devices that would trigger an ad for a casino/water park only a few hours drive for me on FB.  

All kids of things going on with my specific example I am having a hard time wrapping my head around.  I do not have the FB APP on my phone.  I do check my FB once a week or so on my phone through my browser, but no APP.  

I have Google all over my phone though of course.  I use Google maps, search engine, calendar etc.  

So Google was 'listening' then sold the data to FB who then used it to pop an an ad on my FB 24-48 hours after we first discussed the idea.

I am not a huge conspiracy guy, that is my brother who I have heated discussions with about his theories.  I do not think there is any malevolent in what they are doing...no grand plan to turn us into soylent green or anything...it is all about money....this is obvious.  The money gets filtered through the system and I end up with a piece of it anyway....through stocks of course....good for the goose good for the gander type deal.  This may very well be the thinking behind it.

What do people use their phones for most of all?  Minus internet.  I would guess camera.  My camera will not work AT ALL unless I give it permission to use the mic....think about that for a second.

And let us not muddy the waters here....of course I know you need the mic to record video, but you do not need a mic to take a picture...you will not be able to use voice to tell the camera to take a pic or record video, but to take a picture you do not need the mic.

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6 minutes ago, John_Brian_K said:

So apparently you cannot use your phone (on android with a Samsung) unless you give the camera permission to use the mic.  I just tried my camera and you cannot open the APP unless it has permission to the mic.

And to continue on this discussion.  I am sure we have all had similar situations to the one I experienced yesterday.  I spent most of the night trying to remember if I typed ANYTHING into any of MY devices that would trigger an ad for a casino/water park only a few hours drive for me on FB.  

All kids of things going on with my specific example I am having a hard time wrapping my head around.  I do not have the FB APP on my phone.  I do check my FB once a week or so on my phone through my browser, but no APP.  

I have Google all over my phone though of course.  I use Google maps, search engine, calendar etc.  

So Google was 'listening' then sold the data to FB who then used it to pop an an ad on my FB 24-48 hours after we first discussed the idea.

I am not a huge conspiracy guy, that is my brother who I have heated discussions with about his theories.  I do not think there is any malevolent in what they are doing...no grand plan to turn us into soylent green or anything...it is all about money....this is obvious.  The money gets filtered through the system and I end up with a piece of it anyway....through stocks of course....good for the goose good for the gander type deal.  This may very well be the thinking behind it.

What do people use their phones for most of all?  Minus internet.  I would guess camera.  My camera will not work AT ALL unless I give it permission to use the mic....think about that for a second.

And let us not muddy the waters here....of course I know you need the mic to record video, but you do not need a mic to take a picture...you will not be able to use voice to tell the camera to take a pic or record video, but to take a picture you do not need the mic.

You said it yourself in your initial post. Facebook knows who your spouse is. It stands to reason that if a Facebook ad is revelant to her it could also be relevant to you. Google knows the IP addresses you use, and you are logged in multiple places, not just your phone, I presume. All of this stuff is connected. There are other ways Facebook/google could determine that to be a relevant ad for you. 

Or maybe it was a coincidence that you simply noticed. It’s the winter after all, so advertising an indoor water park or something to a guy that likes to gamble isn’t out of the ordinary. 

 

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Last year I started to investigate vacations in February.  Didn't book until April.  But I'm starting to see vacation ads for the same sites I used last year to find our rental.

 

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23 hours ago, Shelton said:

Probably not a great example, but I was at a bar for college football championship shortly after the new year, and a couple of the guys I was there with were talking about going to the live peloton workout on an upcoming business trip they were taking to New York. 

The next day I saw ads for the peloton. 

Of course, it’s a very popular product right now and it was the new year so lots of workout ads are out there. It’s quite possible the peloton ads had been there in the days prior and I just didn’t notice. 

Talk about something you'd have absolutely no interest in buying...............Then see if things start popping up.  Then you'll know.  

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Somewhat tangential, I have a theory that "people you may know" on Facebook are people snooping your profile.

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