Author Topic: Phones listening?  (Read 1432 times)

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Online arthwollipot

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #15 on: December 10, 2018, 07:28:41 PM »
I dont know if its facebook but for me, that STI ad was very very weird.
Its a thing I havent googled in 4 years, and I dont know what information I could have given away that would give me that specific ad for the specific pharmacy chain I was discussing offering the specific service my friends and I discussed.

You may not have googled it, but one of your friends might have. That's enough. Facebook will give you ads based on the behaviour of your friends, as evidenced by the white-supremacist story I quoted from the podcast above.
Its also highly unlikely that any of my friends would google that specific service from that specific provider and as I said, there have been numerous other, equally specific ads relating to stuff I had been discussing.

I do think it warrants looking into and maybe doing some tests as suggested above.

What I described is only one possible method of them finding out. They undoubtedly have hundreds of other methods. But sure, why not? There's no harm in doing the test. I don't know how reliably the tests can be interpreted though. But if you do find clear and definitive evidence that Facebook outright lied about the way their software functions, I'm sure you could get a HUGE settlement out of them. Good luck.

I find it weird that youtube STILL cannot predict the kind of videos I want to see despite me giving feedback on videos i dont want to see, literally every day, but they are so well able to send me targeted ads after the fact, for things Ive been speaking about or purchased in meat space.

Yeah, YouTube's recommendation algorithm is weird. But Google Music's recommendation algorithm sucks too, and so do Spotify and Apple Music. Turns out it's actually pretty hard to determine what people might enjoy. The only one I've found that worked for me was Pandora, and they no longer provide services in Australia.
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Offline Billzbub

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #16 on: December 11, 2018, 02:08:38 PM »
Another explanation is that you were already getting STI ads randomly and you didn't realize it.  That subconsciously encouraged you to discuss it with your friends, and now that you've discussed it, you are noticing it in your ads...or maybe some other version of this kind of thing.  I was just reading the book "Belief" and they mentioned this concept (but not in these words).  Two people could be walking down the street and hear a song coming out of a restaurant that subconsciously reminds them of a third friend they haven't seen in years.  One friend mentions the third friend to the other and the other says "I was just thinking about them!  Its like we have ESPN!"  But in fact, both of them were thinking the same thing for a reason.  In other words, maybe your ads and your conversation somehow came from some third thing that you don't realize.
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Offline CarbShark

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #17 on: December 13, 2018, 01:41:51 PM »
Well there’s a number of things that they can know. They know you were in the area of that pharmacy where the ad was prominently displayed.

They know who you were with, your buddy, and they know his search history too.

If the neighborhood you were in is a little shady, then that could account for why the pharmacy was displaying that ad in the first place, and could also account for why you saw those ads on Facebook.

If after seeing that add your buddy thought it might be a good idea to look up information about STI‘s, Facebook might have figured out that since you spent some time together you might have similar interests.

All those are more likely than FB eavesdropping on conversations.


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Offline daniel1948

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #18 on: December 13, 2018, 02:31:11 PM »
Facebook is pure evil. Mark Zuckerberg is Satan. I would not be surprised by anything malicious, intrusive, or immoral that Facebook might ever be accused of. I do not use Facebook and I refused to install WhatsApp when the tour operator on my last trip declared that would be her only means of communicating with us during the trip. (She turned out to be completely incompetent. Her choice of a Facebook-owned app as her platform for communicating with us should have warned me.)

I find it weird that youtube STILL cannot predict the kind of videos I want to see despite me giving feedback on videos i dont want to see, literally every day, but they are so well able to send me targeted ads after the fact, for things Ive been speaking about or purchased in meat space.

I find that YouTube is not too bad about suggesting videos. I mostly use it for music, as there are some amazing classical musicians on YouTube that I don’t find anywhere else. Granted, most of the suggested videos are of zero interest, but I’ve discovered some of my very favorite musicians because they turned up in the suggestions list.

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Online arthwollipot

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #19 on: December 13, 2018, 05:00:45 PM »
I've been using Facebook for years, and have never once been possessed by a literal demon.
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Online Harry Black

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #20 on: December 14, 2018, 03:38:11 AM »
Carbshark- Literally non of what you said is applicable.

The pharmacy was not displaying the ad. Its the same pharmacy that has been in my village for 10 years. I never got an in browser ad for that service before.
You have to specifically google that service and then their site comes up as an option. I did that some years ago and used the option twice before going back to a GP.

My friend didnt look it up either (not in the time we were on our walk anyway) and since we regularly discuss our preferred testing options and schedules, I would be somewhat surprised if he lied about doing so later.

None of this means that facebook was eaves dropping. Perhaps other, less reputable apps are doing so or perhaps its just like when someone phones you while you were thinking of them.
But given the recent issues they and google have had, Im also not inclined to take their word for it when they say they dont do something.

Offline CarbShark

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #21 on: December 14, 2018, 10:48:45 AM »
Even if the specific examples drawn from the limited information in your description were not valid, the point I was making is valid:

Facebook gets a lot of information about you and your friends and everyone else and does not need to eavesdrop to get even more data. They already have enough to display ads that can seem creepy


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Offline Guillermo

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #22 on: December 14, 2018, 02:11:03 PM »
I get related ads whenever I search for things on google. It surprises me how accurate they are.

However, when I search things on a incognito window on Chrome, I get no ads related to any of the searches. It is disproportionate the searches I do incognito vs normal, but I would assume that if they were going through the trouble of listening in through the telephone, they could just as easily get data from the incognito window.

So, I don't think that they listen on you. I think that they are really good at matching ads with your current self using legal means.
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Online Harry Black

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #23 on: December 14, 2018, 02:52:17 PM »
Edit-
Nevermind.
« Last Edit: December 14, 2018, 03:43:57 PM by Harry Black »

Online Harry Black

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #24 on: December 14, 2018, 03:46:42 PM »
I get related ads whenever I search for things on google. It surprises me how accurate they are.

However, when I search things on a incognito window on Chrome, I get no ads related to any of the searches. It is disproportionate the searches I do incognito vs normal, but I would assume that if they were going through the trouble of listening in through the telephone, they could just as easily get data from the incognito window.

So, I don't think that they listen on you. I think that they are really good at matching ads with your current self using legal means.
So why do they suck so hard at finding me the specific things Im actually googling?
And why do I only get the ads for certain things AFTER Ive bought them in an actual store?

Thats not to say I think eavesdropping is likely. Its that I think they are really shit at predicting my interests so I think coincidence is more likely.

Offline amysrevenge

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #25 on: December 14, 2018, 04:01:05 PM »
They kind of are shit at this, in general.  The only period in my life I've ever gotten ads for business cards was the 3-5 days after I announced on FB that I just got new business cards - ie. the time in my life when my need for business cards was at an absolute low point.
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Offline The Latinist

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #26 on: December 14, 2018, 04:55:46 PM »
Don’t know about Android, but on the iPhone all apps have to ask for permission to use the microphone, and there is a bar at the top of the screen if they are using it when not foregrounded.
« Last Edit: December 14, 2018, 04:58:31 PM by The Latinist »
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Offline swan

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #27 on: December 14, 2018, 04:58:19 PM »
CVS is the worst in that regard: My mile-long receipts often have coupons for the expenseive things I just purchased re that very receipt. "I see that you bought $30 of ibuprofen today, so here's $2 off your next purchase of $25 or more of ibuprofen... but only if you buy it in the next three days. Aww, too bad you only stock up every three months." It happens even if I had scanned my card on the coupons/price-check machine (if it's working).

Online Harry Black

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #28 on: December 14, 2018, 05:06:32 PM »
Don’t know about Android, but on the iPhone all apps have to ask for permission to use the microphone, and there is a bar at the top of the screen if they are using it when not foregrounded.
We give the same permission. I sometimes get notifications from whatsapp that it accessed the microphone. It never says why or for how long.

Offline The Latinist

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Re: Phones listening?
« Reply #29 on: December 14, 2018, 08:03:45 PM »
Don’t know about Android, but on the iPhone all apps have to ask for permission to use the microphone, and there is a bar at the top of the screen if they are using it when not foregrounded.
We give the same permission. I sometimes get notifications from whatsapp that it accessed the microphone. It never says why or for how long.

I’ve never had a banner for microphone use that wasn’t associated with an application I was actively using audio on (Skype, etc.). 
I would like to propose...that...it is undesirable to believe in a proposition when there is no ground whatever for supposing it true. — Bertrand Russell

 

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