World, Writing, Wealth discussion

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message 1: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 15717 comments I guess I'll leave the description of how wonderful Facebook is to some other time and touch only the issue that currently floats around the globe about Face listening to people.
Just some recent examples, incl. alleged Facebook's denial:
http://www.independent.co.uk/life-sty...
http://www.theverge.com/2016/6/3/1185...
I heard FB was invited to special hearing at Israeli parliament on this issue, but chose not to show up.
There are journalist investigations allegedly showing direct connection with specific ads poping up, inspired by telephone conversation being held. Yeah, Face says you can deny access to mic of your phone, but hey who really reads those t&c when installing this or that app?
They even show some pic, where Zuckerberg's own comp on the background allegedly has some sticker on its mic and camera.
Again, I'm not a privacy freak and hey internet makes the world much less lonely place, but I don't remember inviting internet giants into my house. For all I know, unwittingly we can be actors in reality shows.
Despite reports and agitation about the issue, I'd leave it at 'rumor' level for now, until we get some more clarifications.
What do you think? Do you believe it may be true? We share a lot with Face anyway, why not let them be a little more involved in our personal and business affairs? No big deal really


message 2: by Alex (new)

Alex (asato) Nik wrote: "I guess I'll leave the description of how wonderful Facebook is to some other time and touch only the issue that currently floats around the globe about Face listening to people.
Just some recent ..."


i don't use facebook--although i do have an old account--but on a cautionary note, the UK Register states that the fb microphone app is turned on by default.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/05/...

Here's a very brief article on your digital rights of voice data in the cloud:

http://www.speechtechmag.com/Articles...


Tara Woods Turner | 2063 comments omg. that is all.
*hangs head in despair*


message 4: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Williams (houseofwilliams) I don't see why they wouldn't. Facebook and Google are well known for being metadata seekers, and this domain of using said data to gauge your tastes and habits is already being done with targeted ads and through cookies.

//I don't remember inviting internet giants into my house. For all I know, unwittingly we can be actors in reality shows.//

Do I smell a concept for a dystopian, post-cyberpunk novel? I think I doooo....


message 5: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 15717 comments Matthew wrote: "Do I smell a concept for a dystopian, post-cyberpunk novel? I think I doooo...."

Ha, I can only vaguely imagine what these genres stand for, but maybe even a mundane thriller can benefit from exploring this direction -:)


message 6: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Williams (houseofwilliams) Nik wrote: "Matthew wrote: "Do I smell a concept for a dystopian, post-cyberpunk novel? I think I doooo...."

Ha, I can only vaguely imagine what these genres stand for, but maybe even a mundane thriller can b..."


Oh c'mon, you know dystopian literature! Dark, ugly, scary, like 1984, Brave New World, We, The Handmaid's Tale, The Iron Heel? And should these classics not be available, there's always Hunger Games.

As for post-cyberpunk, that requires a bit more explanation. Basically, cyberpunk is lit where high-tech meets low life, a kind of new take on the dystopian format that emerged in the 80s. Post-cyberpunk looks at high tech a little bit more ambiguously, with the picture being not so gloomy and examining the social impacts rather than focusing on abuse/dictatorship scenarios.


message 7: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 15717 comments Well, the way you put it, definitely sounds like my kind of stuff: Dark, ugly, scary,.... where high-tech meets low life,.... examining the social impacts.
Kinda things I like to write about


message 8: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Williams (houseofwilliams) Nik wrote: "Well, the way you put it, definitely sounds like my kind of stuff: Dark, ugly, scary,.... where high-tech meets low life,.... examining the social impacts.
Kinda things I like to write about"


Then I suggest you grab this idea and run with it. You know, before some opportunistic SOB tries to steal it and take credit for it (you have 24 hours!) ;)


message 9: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 15717 comments I'll contact Mark for sponsorship first. Or maybe I just need to call anyone and he will hear through the mike -:)


message 10: by Jen Pattison (new)

Jen Pattison | 409 comments Luddite here - my phone is only ever used as a phone. I've never been tempted to get a smart phone, I can't afford one anyway. Are there any other Luddites here?


message 11: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 15717 comments Jen wrote: "Luddite here - my phone is only ever used as a phone. I've never been tempted to get a smart phone, I can't afford one anyway. Are there any other Luddites here?"

Surely, there are others, but their access to internet may be a little less frequent -:)


message 12: by Al "Tank" (new)

Al "Tank" (alkalar) | 54 comments Jen wrote: "Luddite here - my phone is only ever used as a phone. I've never been tempted to get a smart phone, I can't afford one anyway. Are there any other Luddites here?"

Me. Oddly enough, I was a professional computer geek my entire professional life. Now, I use an old PC (I built myself) with XP still on it and carry an ancient flip phone. Still have a "land line".


message 13: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 15717 comments Oh, if XP and land line are the criteria, then I'm a Luddite too. And my smart phone strikes me as a little stupid sometimes -:)


message 14: by Jen Pattison (last edited Aug 12, 2016 12:50PM) (new)

Jen Pattison | 409 comments Al "Tank" wrote: "Me. Oddly enough, I was a professional computer geek my entire professional life. Now, I use an old PC (I built myself) with XP still on it and carry an ancient flip phone. Still have a "land line"."

Hurrah! I'm not alone then. I also have a PC with XP that I bought secondhand 7 years ago when the old one died. I also have a landline and the most basic mobile phone.

I do confess to buying a 13" MacBook Air though in Dec 14 when I was over the Channel, a store had a 23% off everything sale. It was an absolute bargain with the strong £ back then, as some of you may know I am a debt survivor but I did pay for it in cash and lived on pasta for the next month. The desktop was on its last legs but we revived it with a new hard drive and I still use it for MS Office docs. The Mac is much faster though, even though I haven't yet got round to reading my book MacBook for Dummies.


message 15: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 15717 comments Jen wrote: "I do confess to buying a 13" MacBook Air though in Dec 14 when I was over the Channel, a store had a 23% off everything sale. ..."

Jen, this is way over the line. We might exclude you from the exclusive Luddite club. That's how it starts. Next thing you'd be using bitcoins -:)


message 16: by E.M. (new)

E.M. Thomas | 86 comments Holding it down with Windows XP is impressive! - not the least of which because of Microsoft's multiple attempts to force upgrades and conversions. Then again, I was one of the weirdos that liked Windows 8 and love Windows 10 (aside from the new browser, which I found terrible and not even close to replacing Chrome).


message 17: by Jen Pattison (new)

Jen Pattison | 409 comments Nik wrote: "Jen, this is way over the line. We might exclude you from the exclusive Luddite club. That's how it starts. Next thing you'd be using bitcoins -:)"

*Hangs head in shame*

I really do like my Mac though!

I will remain firmly a Luddite when it it comes to forms of payment though, I use mainly cash. Fear not, I won't be using Bitcoins as not only do I not know much about them, but I have heard that some British banks have told customers that they are closing their account in a month's time. One of the reasons for this is with people buying Bitcoins, as the bank thinks that they might be up to something dodgy like money laundering.


message 18: by Jen Pattison (new)

Jen Pattison | 409 comments E.M. wrote: "Holding it down with Windows XP is impressive!."

I really like XP, at one workplace about 5 years ago they switched to Windows 7 and I hated it. I'm a real skinflint so I haven't bought any post-XP updated versions.


message 19: by Mike (new)

Mike Robbins (mikerobbins) | 290 comments I have one laptop running XP and as it's 7 years old, I'm not going to put Windows 10 on it. What I will do at some point is make it Linux/XP dual boot.


message 20: by Kevin (new)

Kevin Kinnen (KevinKinnen) | 22 comments I have direct, anecdotal, if un-confirmable evidence that my phones, computers, active-listening capable devices are monitored, have been for many years, decades even. But then, I am related to multiple individuals in both the nuclear weapons program, and various intelligence services. My father was Q cleared. My wife and I joke, (not really) about the microphone being on, usually when something I described to her five years ago turns up on the commercial market.

Yes, I am quite aware of how paranoid that sounds. It's also mostly said in jest, fun and lighthearted commentary on the world we live in. Mostly.

The fact is that since just after 9/11, EVERY cellular call is monitored for keywords. Who is to say that all of those keywords are related to national security? What if the influence of money allowed certain corporations and companies access to idea material, metadata, commercial habits and precursor trend information, etc. etc. etc... Wait, did I say 'what if'? I meant, most definitely is, because the amount of money involved overcomes all resistance.

I make a game of it now - I invent something, describe it in exacting detail near an active device, and see how long it takes to appear...

"Just because you're paranoid, doesn't mean they aren't out to get you!"

:)


message 21: by Matthew (new)

Matthew Williams (houseofwilliams) Kevin wrote: "I have direct, anecdotal, if un-confirmable evidence that my phones, computers, active-listening capable devices are monitored, have been for many years, decades even. But then, I am related to mul..."

Well, ever since the mid-2000s, we've known with certainty that our phone conversations can and are being tapped. And then with the Snowden leaks, we learned that domestic surveillance has only expanded, taking the form of PRISM and metadata mining by the NSA. Nothing seems too paranoid at this point.


message 22: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 15717 comments Matthew wrote: "our phone conversations can and are being tapped..."

There were times when any business meeting in former USSR started with taking batteries out of the cell phones. Which made me wonder, whether iphones were deliberately designed not to enable easy extraction of the battery -:)
In Ukraine it was known that apart from numerous law enforcement authorities, at least a few business groups had advanced interception equipment.
What can I say - we need to get used to live in reality show and turn exhibitionists. My only hope is that if you haven't done anything worth attention, you wouldn't attract that much attention


message 23: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 15717 comments So an attempt to dismantle Face or at least strip it off its crown's jewels has commenced: https://edition.cnn.com/2020/12/09/te...
What's your attitude?


message 24: by Philip (new)

Philip (phenweb) | 1 comments Break it up and Google as should have happened with Microsoft. I put Apple in different case as they are tied to minority of IT Tech eco-system - they are monopolistic with their own kit but there is plenty of competition for kit from phones to tablets to computers and associated software

Buying WhatsApp and Instagram was done to stifle competition not add new features and of course the real reason to misuse data for the income source of ads


message 25: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 11487 comments Nik wrote: "So an attempt to dismantle Face or at least strip it off its crown's jewels has commenced: https://edition.cnn.com/2020/12/09/te...
What's..."


The question is, who has the heft to buy the jewels? Selling it to the likes of Google won't solve the problem, you can't have the Chinese, so who is independent of the problem and has both the cash and the desire?


message 26: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 15717 comments Ian wrote: "The question is, who has the heft to buy the jewels? Selling it to the likes of Google won't solve the problem, you can't have the Chinese, so who is independent of the problem and has both the cash and the desire?..."

An auction may attract a few..


message 27: by Philip (new)

Philip (phenweb) | 1 comments They can both be floated back as independent companies clearly with a host of institutional investors or hedge funds.

Maybe Musk could buy one - he has no Social Media tech - mind you his interests are elsewhere i.e. actually doing things rather than selling data about other people doing things


message 28: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 6033 comments Has anyone tried Parler?


message 29: by Lizzie (new)

Lizzie | 1814 comments We know Alexa is listening. She responds to people on TV saying any form of her name. One day my granddaughter was talking to me on the Alexa show and her Alexa and mine started talking to each other. Nothing like a 5-year old lecturing grandma on don't say her name and I have to call her "the robot".

No. Alexa was not my idea. My daughter did it. She likes Alexa. She likes the kid calling grandma on her own and not taking over her phone. I am the person who doesn't use cruise control, would rather have the top down than the a/c on, will reach for the knob rather than turn up the volume on the steering wheel ...

I used to keep up on the tech and especially on computers. But I have had to relearn programs and how to use a computer so many times over the years that I stopped caring. Instead of learning it and reading books, I just push buttons until I get what I want or it shuts down. It's actually less annoying for me, though it appears to annoy everyone else I know.


message 30: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 6033 comments I do not and never will have Alexa in my home. I don't have a smart TV. I put tape over the camera on my laptop. I use an alias on all my social media, although I know it can eventually be traced back to me. I don't get why people are comfortable giving away their privacy. Years ago, I read 1984 and I took its message to heart.


message 31: by Marie (new)

Marie | 8 comments Scout wrote: "I do not and never will have Alexa in my home. I don't have a smart TV. I put tape over the camera on my laptop. I use an alias on all my social media, although I know it can eventually be traced back to me. I don't get why people are comfortable giving away their privacy. Years ago, I read 1984 and I took its message to heart...."

I don't have Alexa either - so that makes two of us! Haha! I don't need a robot voice to tell me what to do. :-)


message 32: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 6033 comments Right. Or spy on me :-)


message 33: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 15717 comments So, a whistleblower reveals that Face prefers profits over "people", "public good", whatever: https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/2...
But doesn't biz in general? What kind of revelation is that? I don't remember Mark trying to pass for mother Theresa :)


message 34: by Beau (new)

Beau | 2000 comments Marie wrote: "I don't have Alexa either - so that makes two of us!"

Three of us!

My brother's family have it and whenever my tech-savvy teenage nephew walks into the room, he turns it off. The kids know what it's all about :)

Alexa is just a little busy-body and a spy.


message 35: by Marie (new)

Marie | 8 comments Beau wrote: "Marie wrote: "I don't have Alexa either - so that makes two of us!"

Three of us!

My brother's family have it and whenever my tech-savvy teenage nephew walks into the room, he turns it off. The k..."


I have a firestick and I could if I wanted to activate Alexa through it, but I haven't and I won't. I am too old school for some of that techy stuff. Some stuff I just like doing manually. lol :)


message 36: by Beau (new)

Beau | 2000 comments I am a manual person too, Marie (although not very practically minded lol).

The only smart things I have in my house are a gas and electricity meter because I was told they'd cut bills. Having said that, the gadgets to monitor consumption and interact remain tucked away in their boxes.

As I think I mentioned on another thread, the only bit of tech I would really miss in my kindle, but it's a supplement to books not a replacement.

Oh, and this computer, of course, to chat to you guys :)


message 37: by Marie (new)

Marie | 8 comments Beau wrote: "I am a manual person too, Marie (although not very practically minded lol).

The only smart things I have in my house are a gas and electricity meter because I was told they'd cut bills. Having said that, the gadgets to monitor consumption and interact remain tucked away in their boxes.

As I think I mentioned on another thread, the only bit of tech I would really miss in my kindle, but it's a supplement to books not a replacement.

Oh, and this computer, of course, to chat to you guys :)..."



I live in an apartment but there are some energy efficient appliances in here, so I was happy about that when I rented the place.

As far as devices - I love my kindle (LOL) so that won't be going anywhere - though it is from Amazon and I think there is a feature on it for Alexa too, but she is not activated (I don't need her to tell me what to read either - lol), but I also use my cell phone quite a bit for different things besides talking/texting and I also have a computer/laptop to do stuff too.

Goodness forbid Beau that you get rid of your computer as you would definitely miss out on conversations over here! lol 😆

Getting back to the original topic on this thread about facebook - I do use facebook but I am not on there much. I will post stuff once in awhile on there but my main focus is over here on Goodreads.

Facebook has become too much of a "censorship haven" over there and it seems some of my friends on there have been dinged for different things they have said on posts which I would consider minor compared to other stuff I have seen on facebook.

Oh and what did I miss with the shutdown of facebook the other day? I didn't even know anything had happened till hours later after it was all over.


message 38: by Beau (new)

Beau | 2000 comments I don't know much about Facebook, Marie, but have recently discovered a superb facility on the Kindle. You can email a Word document, as an attachment, to the Kindle's exclusive email address (found in settings) and it will show on the Kindle like a book. Amazing!


message 39: by Marie (new)

Marie | 8 comments Beau wrote: "I don't know much about Facebook, Marie, but have recently discovered a superb facility on the Kindle. You can email a Word document, as an attachment, to the Kindle's exclusive email address (foun..."

Kindle has all kinds of amazing features - I knew about the attachments that can be emailed by using the kindle address. I love my kindle as you can do so many different things on there to enhance your reading comfort. :)


message 40: by Barbara (new)

Barbara | 272 comments Nik wrote: "So, a whistleblower reveals that Face prefers profits over "people", "public good", whatever:

I don't expect anyone who provides a good or service to me to be doing it for the "public good." If they're selling cars, dog food, dish detergent, I expect them to make a profit on it, and if they're smart, they'll make that profit by producing the best product at the fairest price, so that I'll keep buying, and they'll keep profiting.
What people don't like is "bait and switch" - saying that a product, a social media site, a service is one thing and then imposing standards after the fact that weren't there when you signed on, or making their profits not by offering the best goods or services, but by selling me off to information brokers to make money on the back end.
And as for the "whistleblower", her solution was more government control? How about you do what I did and just dump Facebook?



message 41: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 6033 comments Has anyone read 1984?


message 42: by Philip (new)

Philip (phenweb) | 1 comments Scout wrote: "Has anyone read 1984?"

Yes


message 43: by Beau (new)

Beau | 2000 comments For anyone interested in dystopian books, allow me to recommend John Marrs. I've read these 2, rate them both at 5 stars, and will definitely read more:

The Passengers

The Minders


message 44: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 6033 comments Do any of you guys see what's going on now with the lack of privacy and get scared? Think of 1984 and the total lack of privacy? Cameras and microphones in your house eventually? Or maybe already with smart TVs and Alexa. It doesn't seem to be an issue; I don't see any concern or people talking about it. Or maybe it's not an issue?


message 45: by Philip (new)

Philip (phenweb) | 1 comments Scout wrote: "Do any of you guys see what's going on now with the lack of privacy and get scared? Think of 1984 and the total lack of privacy? Cameras and microphones in your house eventually? Or maybe already w..."

I have huge concerns not just from the corps spying but from governments too. There is a trade off between privacy and convenience. Unfortunately the majority have decided convenience is everything and privacy is gone.


message 46: by Nik (new)

Nik Krasno | 15717 comments Scout wrote: "Do any of you guys see what's going on now with the lack of privacy and get scared? Think of 1984 and the total lack of privacy? Cameras and microphones in your house eventually? Or maybe already w..."

The composure/indifference is because the lack of privacy is barely felt. It comes to the fore mostly in targeted marketing and otherwise piles up in different databases. There are "Pandora papers" on most of us in a sense of a huge bulk of info, stockpiled somewhere, part of which we deem intimate/private.
However, if one would come to a government agency or a store he or she never visited before and a person one meets there would know everything about him or her, people would start to freak out :)


message 47: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 11487 comments I would be happy if my list of books was better known :-) Some privacy has its drawbacks


message 48: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 6033 comments That's pretty flippant, Ian, considering that knowledge is power and and that those who have it can influence or, eventually, control us.


message 49: by Ian (new)

Ian Miller | 11487 comments There was an obvious attempt at humour, Scout, as shown by the :-). I am less concerned with someone trying to influence me. The fact is these days an enormous amount of data is collected on everyone, so much so that it verges on not being very useful. It is true Google etc keep focusing ads on me, and I keep ignoring them. There is no such thing as a free platform: the price is the inevitable ads, etc.

The thing about "Pandora papers" type of thing that Nik wrote about above is true: there is a huge amount of financial info stored in various places, but it is of little use for control. The example is the grossness of those Pandora papers for leading figures. If those leading politicians have stacked away several tens or hundreds of millions they can't account for and nobody took much notice, i don't worry about anyone finding out I made a bank transfer last month. What use is the information? It was perfectly legal, and with millions of transactions a second, who can keep track of them.

The last comment from Nik's post 46 - yes, people would freak out, but not for the obvious reason, but rather that the person had the memory needed to keep in their heads the data on virtually the entire population of the city to be able to comment on someone they had never met. I just don't believe it is a problem.


message 50: by Scout (new)

Scout (goodreadscomscout) | 6033 comments Sorry, Ian, for misinterpreting. I do, however, see this as a problem now, but a big one in the future. I see how corrupt government already is, and I can see it using information against us at some point to its advantage and our detriment.


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