Advertisements watching people

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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Flippy » Mon Feb 02, 2009 2:16 pm UTC

I just got the idea of a flashmob with many people standing in front of a really bad ad with some of that cameras in the screen/nearby and looking at this ad as it was the best ad ever. :-P

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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Pez Dispens3r » Mon Feb 02, 2009 2:18 pm UTC

Dream wrote:
Pez Dispens3r wrote:I know how many cameras there are in the store, I know where the computer is they can be monitored from, and I know how often managers sit there watching the cameras... virtually, never. Even if they want to review footage... hours and hours of watching several screens... they're not gonna ping me for something unless they already know I'm doing it and have set a trap for me.

And if some manager takes a dislike to you, and decides to go looking for "evidence"? This isn't about these technologies being used properly, as in to stop staff doing naughty stuff. It's about installing a pervasive, powerful system and just hoping that no one abuses it. The potential for abuse with these things is absolutely scary.


Indeed, the potential for abuse of the system is alarming. Why, if I stopped to look at an ad about lingerie, I could be slandered as a prevert all over the papers! My esteemed reputation would be in tatters.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby EstLladon » Mon Feb 02, 2009 2:30 pm UTC

Isn't the memory of the guy a "visual record"? It can be used in court for example. The only difference between what he sees and what camera sees is that we cannot take it out of his head and analyze.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Tautology » Mon Feb 02, 2009 3:08 pm UTC

If the only thing that the camera would be able to identify is gender (and as has already been said, there'd be some difficulties with that too), then it's not getting very detailed information on its market. Face recognition technology is pretty crappy at the moment anyway. If they were able to correctly identify age it might make it a bit more useful, but really, at the moment I think it'd be a bit useless to change ads based on face recognition.

Also, what happens when there's a large group of people of mixed gender? Does it explode or just advertise a bag of Doritos with "more to share"?

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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby 22/7 » Mon Feb 02, 2009 4:06 pm UTC

Tautology wrote:If the only thing that the camera would be able to identify is gender (and as has already been said, there'd be some difficulties with that too), then it's not getting very detailed information on its market. Face recognition technology is pretty crappy at the moment anyway. If they were able to correctly identify age it might make it a bit more useful, but really, at the moment I think it'd be a bit useless to change ads based on face recognition.
The 3rd and 4th lines of the thread wrote:Small cameras can now be embedded in the screen or hidden around it, tracking who looks at the screen and for how long. The makers of the tracking systems say the software can determine the viewer's gender, approximate age range and, in some cases, ethnicity — and can change the ads accordingly.

EstLladon wrote:Isn't the memory of the guy a "visual record"? It can be used in court for example. The only difference between what he sees and what camera sees is that we cannot take it out of his head and analyze.
Ah, yes, let's argue whether people should be allowed to hire someone to stand there and watch other people, like a security guard. If you honestly can't see the practical differences between someone sitting there watching people and a camera recording and analyzing those people, especially when viewed through the lens of "how can this be abused?", then we have nothing more to discuss.
Totally not a hypothetical...

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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Indon » Mon Feb 02, 2009 5:11 pm UTC

Clearly, what we need to do is start tainting their data.

Walk away immediately from interesting ads, and study really bad/stupid ones. Then the system will favor showing other people the bad one and the measure backfires.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby EstLladon » Mon Feb 02, 2009 5:25 pm UTC

22/7 wrote:Ah, yes, let's argue whether people should be allowed to hire someone to stand there and watch other people, like a security guard. If you honestly can't see the practical differences between someone sitting there watching people and a camera recording and analyzing those people, especially when viewed through the lens of "how can this be abused?", then we have nothing more to discuss.

Why do you think that cameras are scarier than people? People are better at analyzing people than cameras. There is no harm that a camera can do to you that a human being cannot. Cameras don't harm people, people harm people. If you deny somebody information they think they really need they find another way of getting it. Google knows a lot about you, but you do not care. Why you care about cameras then?
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby bigglesworth » Mon Feb 02, 2009 5:31 pm UTC

22/7 wrote:Ah, yes, let's argue whether people should be allowed to hire someone to stand there and watch other people, like a security guard. If you honestly can't see the practical differences between someone sitting there watching people and a camera recording and analyzing those people, especially when viewed through the lens of "how can this be abused?", then we have nothing more to discuss.


The Stasi had relatively few video cameras and yet seemed fairly good at their job.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby roc314 » Mon Feb 02, 2009 6:27 pm UTC

EstLladon wrote:
22/7 wrote:Ah, yes, let's argue whether people should be allowed to hire someone to stand there and watch other people, like a security guard. If you honestly can't see the practical differences between someone sitting there watching people and a camera recording and analyzing those people, especially when viewed through the lens of "how can this be abused?", then we have nothing more to discuss.

Why do you think that cameras are scarier than people? People are better at analyzing people than cameras. There is no harm that a camera can do to you that a human being cannot. Cameras don't harm people, people harm people. If you deny somebody information they think they really need they find another way of getting it. Google knows a lot about you, but you do not care. Why you care about cameras then?
Camera footage can be seen by anyone. It's hard to get the guy's memories out of their head so that everyone else can watch everything they saw.

EDIT: Hence, the camera is much more abusable.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Jack Saladin » Mon Feb 02, 2009 6:33 pm UTC

Jesse wrote:
EstLladon wrote:What if instead of camera it was actual booth with actual person inside it instructed and paid minimum wage to change the ads according to gender and age of person standing in front of it? It doesn't seem so frightening and privacy intruding.

Edited for slight stupidity.


That's because there's not a visual record. If the guy took a photo of everyone who looked at it, it'd still be invasive.

... But, like, what I was saying before about CCTV and so on, is that you're already being recorded. I don't even mean that generally, I mean that when you literally walk past that sign right now anyway, you're already recorded. Probably by more than one camera. This is being recorded by five cameras instead of four... Does an extra angle really make that much more of a difference?

I'm not saying I'm all for surveillance. I'm not. But I'm against all surveillance, not just cameras that happen to be inside a sign. I'm equally disturbed by the other 50 cameras in that shopping centre, or the hundreds of thousands of cameras on the streets, as the one that's going in because of this. Hell, I prefer this one because at least it's used for a "safe" evil purpose like marketing, instead of huntin' terr'rists or handing out ASBO's. I just don't understand why this is the tipping point for people, when there are so many much worse things being done with cameras already.

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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby 22/7 » Mon Feb 02, 2009 6:48 pm UTC

EstLladon wrote:Why do you think that cameras are scarier than people?
Because people can look at the images that a camera produces over and over and over again, and that image doesn't grow blurry over time, it doesn't eventually fade to nothing, and people can abuse a system like that.
EstLladon wrote:People are better at analyzing people than cameras.
Uhuh, and I'll bet that people who can look at the image/video over and over again as opposed to trying to remember something specific from the hundreds of faces earlier would be able to analyze people even better. Is this really a new idea?
EstLladon wrote:There is no harm that a camera can do to you that a human being cannot. Cameras don't harm people, people harm people. If you deny somebody information they think they really need they find another way of getting it.
Are you operating under the delusion that I think this is a machines-rise-up-against-humanity situation here? I (in addition to many others here) am quite aware that it takes a person to actually abuse this system, but the cameras rather than some random guy standing there makes the system more abuseable. Is that not registering with you? That they can go back and really study people if they've got them on film? And that it's not quite as bad if they stick a random guy there to watch the people because his memory isn't literally photographic and it's not currently possible to take his memory from his head and bring it up on a computer for the entire world to see?
EstLladon wrote:Google knows a lot about you, but you do not care. Why you care about cameras then?
You believe in God and you believe that God is a goat. Why, then, do you eat goat? Are you not afraid that the goat you're eating could be God?

Oh, sorry, I thought we were stating as fact things that we made up about the other person and then asking an illogical follow-up question.
bigglesworth wrote:The Stasi had relatively few video cameras and yet seemed fairly good at their job.
And the Nazis didn't have RF chips implanted in the millions of Jews they killed but they killed lots of Jews. Probably a good idea for everyone to get RF chips, no? Yeah, I Godwinned, but really, biggles did it first.
Totally not a hypothetical...

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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby EstLladon » Mon Feb 02, 2009 7:04 pm UTC

22/7, what do you think is the most scary thing they can do to you with information from the camera that they cannot do without?
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby 22/7 » Mon Feb 02, 2009 7:11 pm UTC

It's the whole 1984 argument. Why allow that infrastructure to be created in the first place? Maybe it's the Muricn!*bald eagle* in me, but anything that keeps tabs on my day to day activities, be it for "my own protection" or to push a particular type of toothpaste is worthy of my distrust and, if I have any say in the matter, my veto.
Totally not a hypothetical...

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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Indon » Mon Feb 02, 2009 7:27 pm UTC

EstLladon wrote:22/7, what do you think is the most scary thing they can do to you with information from the camera that they cannot do without?


The actual method of surveillance aside, I think intent is important here.

Theoretically, security cameras exist for security. Traffic cameras exist to catch traffic law violators. Etc, etc.

This camera exists to analyze you for the purposes of exploiting you. They're gathering data from you for commercial purposes without your knowledge or consent, and they'll do whatever they can with that information to make money, to include selling it.

So you know how a company could take your email address and unethically pawn it off to a company that sends out spam? Imagine that but with your face, linked to behavioral patterns.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby EstLladon » Mon Feb 02, 2009 7:38 pm UTC

22/7 wrote:It's the whole 1984 argument. Why allow that infrastructure to be created in the first place? Maybe it's the Muricn!*bald eagle* in me, but anything that keeps tabs on my day to day activities, be it for "my own protection" or to push a particular type of toothpaste is worthy of my distrust and, if I have any say in the matter, my veto.

What if the reason is science?

Indon wrote:This camera exists to analyze you for the purposes of exploiting you. They're gathering data from you for commercial purposes without your knowledge or consent, and they'll do whatever they can with that information to make money, to include selling it.

So you know how a company could take your email address and unethically pawn it off to a company that sends out spam? Imagine that but with your face, linked to behavioral patterns.

If I am to get spam I'd rather get it personalized. I get some spam but it all filters to spam folder automatically. Why that would change? If spam gets more sophisticated, spam filters do the same.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby 22/7 » Mon Feb 02, 2009 8:11 pm UTC

EstLladon wrote:
22/7 wrote:It's the whole 1984 argument. Why allow that infrastructure to be created in the first place? Maybe it's the Muricn!*bald eagle* in me, but anything that keeps tabs on my day to day activities, be it for "my own protection" or to push a particular type of toothpaste is worthy of my distrust and, if I have any say in the matter, my veto.
What if the reason is science?
You're asking if science should get a free pass on invasion of privacy? No, I don't think so.
EstLladon wrote:
Indon wrote:This camera exists to analyze you for the purposes of exploiting you. They're gathering data from you for commercial purposes without your knowledge or consent, and they'll do whatever they can with that information to make money, to include selling it.

So you know how a company could take your email address and unethically pawn it off to a company that sends out spam? Imagine that but with your face, linked to behavioral patterns.
If I am to get spam I'd rather get it personalized. I get some spam but it all filters to spam folder automatically. Why that would change? If spam gets more sophisticated, spam filters do the same.
Because REAL LIFE DOESN'T HAVE SPAM FILTERS. It shouldn't need spam filters. We've already got a shitton of targeted spam on every available piece of rentable vertical property in some cities (buildings as advertisements, for example), why do we need more? And why would it be beneficial to expand the properties of online spam to real world advertising? Do you really want pop ups IRL? Or advertising that just screams at you to be the norm? Imagine if all TV commercials were Billy Mays. Now imagine that every billboard you pass on the street/highway is Billy Mays yelling at you to buy product X. Why is that good?
Totally not a hypothetical...

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bigglesworth wrote:If your economic reality is a choice, then why are you not as rich as Bill Gates?
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby EstLladon » Mon Feb 02, 2009 8:21 pm UTC

22/7 wrote:Because REAL LIFE DOESN'T HAVE SPAM FILTERS. It shouldn't need spam filters. We've already got a shitton of targeted spam on every available piece of rentable vertical property in some cities (buildings as advertisements, for example), why do we need more? And why would it be beneficial to expand the properties of online spam to real world advertising? Do you really want pop ups IRL? Or advertising that just screams at you to be the norm? Imagine if all TV commercials were Billy Mays. Now imagine that every billboard you pass on the street/highway is Billy Mays yelling at you to buy product X. Why is that good?

They do not need to collect information about you to make annoying ads that scream at you loudly.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Indon » Mon Feb 02, 2009 8:33 pm UTC

EstLladon wrote:If I am to get spam I'd rather get it personalized. I get some spam but it all filters to spam folder automatically. Why that would change? If spam gets more sophisticated, spam filters do the same.


Spam is a very poor way to intrude upon your life, that is ultimately dependent on a lack of personalized information for targeted advertising.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby 22/7 » Mon Feb 02, 2009 8:34 pm UTC

@EstLladon: Did you want to reply to everything else, or did you want me to point out that they're more annoying when they're yelling at you and using [your name]/[your email address]/"current resident of [your address]"/etc.? Not to mention you start getting into issues of those things being publically broadcast as you walk into a store ala Minority Report.
Totally not a hypothetical...

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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Jebobek » Mon Feb 02, 2009 8:47 pm UTC

Right now they're at the first phase of seeing how many people stop+stare at the coke ad vs. how many stare at the car ad. This is ok; I'd just be looking at new movies and video game ads. Maybe we'll see more of them in some places.

But I think that they're going to keep moving forward with this. Phase two is when they scan the general facial features first and then project the ad. I'm still into various video games, but my pale, 24-year face + facial hair will tell the camera that this guy is probably into cars and beer and rock+roll. At this point I'm walking down the street and all I see pop on on the electronic posterboards are damn Bud Lite commercials.

Phase three, as previously mentioned, is when we get into wrinkle+retina-scanning "Minority Report" mode. Now I'll be "person 24252541" known by 1,000 Macy's to stare 5 seconds longer at the black panties over anything else. (Hey. They're for my girlfriend, honest..)
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby EstLladon » Mon Feb 02, 2009 8:56 pm UTC

22/7 wrote:@EstLladon: Did you want to reply to everything else, or did you want me to point out that they're more annoying when they're yelling at you and using [your name]/[your email address]/"current resident of [your address]"/etc.? Not to mention you start getting into issues of those things being publically broadcast as you walk into a store ala Minority Report.

I do not know if they would be more annoying. I have my name and email adress publicly available on the internet (i guess). If somebody really wants it he can find it anyway. I haven't seen Minority Report.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby 22/7 » Mon Feb 02, 2009 8:59 pm UTC

The point is that when you walk through a mall, no one is saying your name and when you drive down the highway, no one is saying your email address. That could be annoying and, frankly, a little unsettling since that info is being broadcast.
Totally not a hypothetical...

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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby EstLladon » Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:11 pm UTC

22/7 wrote:The point is that when you walk through a mall, no one is saying your name and when you drive down the highway, no one is saying your email address. That could be annoying and, frankly, a little unsettling since that info is being broadcast.

If you meet a friend in the mall somebody says your name out loud, If in a crowded mall a name is sad out loud nobody knows whose name it is, And why would anybody say my e-mail adress while I'm driving? I do not need to be reminded of it. You broadcast information about yourself constantly just not very fast right now. But still a lot of information about you can be collected if somebody sets it as his goal.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby 22/7 » Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:20 pm UTC

I don't know if you're intentionally missing the point and getting hung up on the details (which aren't very hard details, let's be honest), but it's starting to feel like it. Let's assume you're not. Spam that you find in the spam folder of your email is usually addressed to your name or your email address (since they don't have your name). With facial recognition (or anything similar, really), if ads knew who you were, they would then tie your face (for instance) to your name and use your name to get your attention (it's really effective, which is why someone can say your name relatively softly and you'll hear it compared to them saying some random word at that same level). And again, it's not a matter of "Oh me yarm Someone knows my IRL name at the mall!" It's a matter of this being the first step down the road that has already been described.
Totally not a hypothetical...

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bigglesworth wrote:If your economic reality is a choice, then why are you not as rich as Bill Gates?
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby EstLladon » Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:39 pm UTC

22/7 wrote:I don't know if you're intentionally missing the point and getting hung up on the details (which aren't very hard details, let's be honest), but it's starting to feel like it. Let's assume you're not. Spam that you find in the spam folder of your email is usually addressed to your name or your email address (since they don't have your name). With facial recognition (or anything similar, really), if ads knew who you were, they would then tie your face (for instance) to your name and use your name to get your attention (it's really effective, which is why someone can say your name relatively softly and you'll hear it compared to them saying some random word at that same level). And again, it's not a matter of "Oh me yarm Someone knows my IRL name at the mall!" It's a matter of this being the first step down the road that has already been described.

First of all thank you for correct assumption. I'm missing your point because I do not see it, And road described (I guess you mean Jebobek's post) is not completely horrific. Why would that 1000 "Macy's" would care what colour of panties I prefer to look at? Why should I care about them knowing that?
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Malice » Mon Feb 02, 2009 10:04 pm UTC

22/7 wrote:Not to mention you start getting into issues of those things being publically broadcast as you walk into a store ala Minority Report.


Oh my God, are you trying to say that these cameras will lead to people being arrested for crimes they haven't yet committed?! That's ridiculous!

(Sorry, everyone else was exaggerating and misinterpreting your posts and I wanted to jump on the bandwagon while it was still "cool".)

--
EstLladon wrote:
22/7 wrote:I don't know if you're intentionally missing the point and getting hung up on the details (which aren't very hard details, let's be honest), but it's starting to feel like it. Let's assume you're not. Spam that you find in the spam folder of your email is usually addressed to your name or your email address (since they don't have your name). With facial recognition (or anything similar, really), if ads knew who you were, they would then tie your face (for instance) to your name and use your name to get your attention (it's really effective, which is why someone can say your name relatively softly and you'll hear it compared to them saying some random word at that same level). And again, it's not a matter of "Oh me yarm Someone knows my IRL name at the mall!" It's a matter of this being the first step down the road that has already been described.

First of all thank you for correct assumption. I'm missing your point because I do not see it, And road described (I guess you mean Jebobek's post) is not completely horrific. Why would that 1000 "Macy's" would care what colour of panties I prefer to look at? Why should I care about them knowing that?


One tiny example of the many ways this system could be abused: what if you have a stalker, and she works for Macys and can get access to the ad footage, or simply the compiled file on your life. Now she knows everything about you. She knows who your family is (Christmas shopping), your favorite food (pretzels at the stand across the mall), even what kind of underwear she should wear to best get your attention. If we get to facial recognition, she can connect your face with your credit card number, address, purchasing habits, credit history, etc. A complete stranger could find out everything about you at the touch of a button. Doesn't that concern you? Even if it doesn't, do you understand why some people would be concerned by that?
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby 22/7 » Mon Feb 02, 2009 10:33 pm UTC

Malice wrote:Oh my God, are you trying to say that these cameras will lead to people being arrested for crimes they haven't yet committed?! That's ridiculous!
That's pretty much exactly what I was getting at. I'm glad someone was paying attention.
Totally not a hypothetical...

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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby '; DROP DATABASE;-- » Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:40 am UTC

Watch an advertisement on a video screen in a mall, health club or grocery store and there's a slim — but growing — chance the ad is watching you too.
a video screen in a mall, health club or grocery store and there's a slim — but growing — chance the ad is watching you too.
a video screen [...] and there's a slim — but growing — chance the ad is watching you too.
a video screen [...] is watching you too.
Enough said.

(Personally, I'd probably just put some electrical tape over the cameras if I could see them. Or if they have some sort of "the screen is the camera" system, maybe just stick cardboard cutouts of penises and other nice things to them.)
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Jesse » Tue Feb 03, 2009 3:12 am UTC

A point I'd like to get across is that this isn't something new we're getting angry about, there are many people here who've been against this kind of invasion of privacy for many, many years (I actually switched from EstLladon's side to my current feelings based on a conversation with Hammer and then further explorations of Freedom To Tinker and Cory Doctorow's blog).

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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby EstLladon » Tue Feb 03, 2009 6:27 am UTC

One tiny example of the many ways this system could be abused: what if you have a stalker, and she works for Macys and can get access to the ad footage, or simply the compiled file on your life. Now she knows everything about you. She knows who your family is (Christmas shopping), your favorite food (pretzels at the stand across the mall), even what kind of underwear she should wear to best get your attention. If we get to facial recognition, she can connect your face with your credit card number, address, purchasing habits, credit history, etc. A complete stranger could find out everything about you at the touch of a button. Doesn't that concern you? Even if it doesn't, do you understand why some people would be concerned by that?

My point is that she can do it now too. It would require something more than a touch of a button but stil given enough dedication it is possible. $5 wrench still works better then any facial recognition program. You give away this information anyway, it just does not get collected in one place and analyzed. If you get facial recognition and stuff then it is possible, for example, that it would be actually harder to steal your identity and use your credit card number against your will.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Malice » Tue Feb 03, 2009 7:14 am UTC

EstLladon wrote:
One tiny example of the many ways this system could be abused: what if you have a stalker, and she works for Macys and can get access to the ad footage, or simply the compiled file on your life. Now she knows everything about you. She knows who your family is (Christmas shopping), your favorite food (pretzels at the stand across the mall), even what kind of underwear she should wear to best get your attention. If we get to facial recognition, she can connect your face with your credit card number, address, purchasing habits, credit history, etc. A complete stranger could find out everything about you at the touch of a button. Doesn't that concern you? Even if it doesn't, do you understand why some people would be concerned by that?

My point is that she can do it now too.


Please read this carefully.
Making it easier to keep tabs on people means:
A) it will happen more often.
B) it will happen to more people.

For example, my hypothetical stalker will be able to get information on a dozen people at once--something she can't do by following them around personally. A hypothetical identity thief could construct hundreds of "profiles" easily with a computer and sell them to anybody.

Nobody is arguing that this technology will make things possible that were impossible before. They are arguing that it will make those things easier, and easier to get away with. The proper response to 1984 is not "meh, that's pretty much like today only more so".
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Bubbles McCoy » Tue Feb 03, 2009 8:25 am UTC

Malice wrote:Please read this carefully.
Making it easier to keep tabs on people means:
A) it will happen more often.
B) it will happen to more people.

For example, my hypothetical stalker will be able to get information on a dozen people at once--something she can't do by following them around personally. A hypothetical identity thief could construct hundreds of "profiles" easily with a computer and sell them to anybody.

Nobody is arguing that this technology will make things possible that were impossible before. They are arguing that it will make those things easier, and easier to get away with. The proper response to 1984 is not "meh, that's pretty much like today only more so".

This logic comes across as somewhat invalid, the same argument could be made for the internet as a whole. The more collectivized and available information is, then yes it is in theory "easier to be stalked" (assuming that stalking is seperated from sociopathy and happens to be an activity people stumble upon provided it's easy enough, but I digress). Yes, in theory this gives stalkers another resource, but I see no particular reason that the infromation won't be reasonably well-guarded; breeches in security will be dealt with accordingly and perhaps if there is no real way of securing data, then we should consider holding less of it. For the time being though, forbidding technological progress for the sake of fear of stalkers comes off as absurd.

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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby EstLladon » Tue Feb 03, 2009 8:29 am UTC

Malice wrote:Please read this carefully.
Making it easier to keep tabs on people means:
A) it will happen more often.
B) it will happen to more people.

For example, my hypothetical stalker will be able to get information on a dozen people at once--something she can't do by following them around personally. A hypothetical identity thief could construct hundreds of "profiles" easily with a computer and sell them to anybody.

Nobody is arguing that this technology will make things possible that were impossible before. They are arguing that it will make those things easier, and easier to get away with. The proper response to 1984 is not "meh, that's pretty much like today only more so".

In Russia some time ago you was able to go and buy a CD with leaked databases from GIBDD (information about all vehicles and their owners) or MGTS (telephone databases). Now you can download them for a fee on the net. They (owners of these sites) even have the audacity to claim that they update them regularly.

I want to say - technology works both ways. If the stalking technology gets better, the anti-stalker technology will get better too. If there is a simple way to get your credit card number without you knowing, it would not be possible to purchase stuff knowing only that information.

And I agree with Bubbles McCoy.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby roc314 » Tue Feb 03, 2009 8:34 am UTC

Bubbles McCoy wrote:This logic comes across as somewhat invalid, the same argument could be made for the internet as a whole. The more collectivized and available information is, then yes it is in theory "easier to be stalked" (assuming that stalking is seperated from sociopathy and happens to be an activity people stumble upon provided it's easy enough, but I digress). Yes, in theory this gives stalkers another resource, but I see no particular reason that the infromation won't be reasonably well-guarded; breeches in security will be dealt with accordingly and perhaps if there is no real way of securing data, then we should consider holding less of it.
Ignoring the fact that I doubt many stores keep very good security on their surveillance tapes, there's also the issue of the people entrusted with protecting the tapes abusing that power.
For the time being though, forbidding technological progress for the sake of fear of stalkers comes off as absurd.
Personally, what I find absurd is characterizing the limitation of public surveillance as forbidding technological progress. No one is saying cameras shouldn't be created and improved upon, only that this particular application of them is unethical. That's like characterizing those against nuclear weapons as being anti-technology. No, they just don't think that that technology should be used in that way.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Amnesiasoft » Tue Feb 03, 2009 8:45 am UTC

Actually Malice, I think you missed the point EstLladon was trying to make about it being more secure with facial recognition. I believe he was implying that facial recognition data would be tied into your credit card, preventing anyone but a very similar looking person from using it as well...

...but it looks like he made that implication with a misunderstanding of what you were saying as well. Perhaps for a moment you should both step back from tackling each others words to putting out what you're thinking instead and clarify to each other (though from the current conversation, I'm thinking EstLladon is the one who needs this more).

And as for the topic at hand, I've personally got no issues with cameras up in public spaces. You already don't know what random person running around snapping pictures/shooting video with their camera phone has picked up in the background on accident, and while I'm certain this may sound a little silly, but I'm sure plenty of people who'd prefer not to get snapped up in those has been. But I've yet to hear complaints of people making use of these camera phones in public.But then again, I'm a rather apathetic person as it is.

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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Iori_Yagami » Tue Feb 03, 2009 9:10 am UTC

Note to self: always wear Saw pig-mask when going into a shop. Always! :twisted:
As for EstLladon, I think there is a misunderstanding. I speak Russian as my primary language, and I have a hard time of finding the equivalent word for 'privacy' at all. In fact, I'd go that far as to suggest the the whole concept of 'privacy' was non-existent in USSR and now in post-USSR space, beyond basic decency (you do not stalk ladies in their dressing rooms). EstLladon refers only to potential crime possibilities (such as stealing things that belong to someone else by using confidential information). However, the issue is deeper here.
I suggest listening to song 'Маркетинг" by Russian-Ameriсan band "Центр". It nicely touches those topics. :mrgreen:
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby EstLladon » Tue Feb 03, 2009 9:26 am UTC

Amnesiasoft wrote:Actually Malice, I think you missed the point EstLladon was trying to make about it being more secure with facial recognition. I believe he was implying that facial recognition data would be tied into your credit card, preventing anyone but a very similar looking person from using it as well...

For example yes. I didn't state the actual way it can be implemented, but this kind of technology can certainly be used for you to be actually more protected from unauthorized access to really important information about you. I think it is ok when people know things about me. It is not ok when they can pretend to be me to somebody else, though.
Amnesiasoft wrote:...but it looks like he made that implication with a misunderstanding of what you were saying as well. Perhaps for a moment you should both step back from tackling each others words to putting out what you're thinking instead and clarify to each other (though from the current conversation, I'm thinking EstLladon is the one who needs this more).

I think that it is possible that society with more openly accessible information can be no more possibly harmful to individual person in average than it is now.
Iori_Yagami wrote:As for EstLladon, I think there is a misunderstanding. I speak Russian as my primary language, and I have a hard time of finding the equivalent word for 'privacy' at all. In fact, I'd go that far as to suggest the the whole concept of 'privacy' was non-existent in USSR and now in post-USSR space, beyond basic decency (you do not stalk ladies in their dressing rooms). EstLladon refers only to potential crime possibilities (such as stealing things that belong to someone else by using confidential information). However, the issue is deeper here.

Yeah. I guess all my friends use word "прайваси" that is direct transliteration of "privacy". And it is probable that I do not understand the "deeper issue" here. Does it have something to do with sense of personal security? Can it be that some people want to know something about you only because you are hiding it? Forbidden fruit and what not. Sometimes I wonder if the fact that nobody ever asks stuff about me is because I tell if they ask.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Malice » Tue Feb 03, 2009 10:14 am UTC

Bubbles McCoy wrote:For the time being though, forbidding technological progress for the sake of fear of stalkers comes off as absurd.


Pretending for a moment that this is what I was doing, technological progress should always be considered based on a cost-benefit analysis and not just blindly approved. The benefits of the internet far, far outweigh the increases in crime and decreases in security; in fact, it has proven to be an excellent tool against government tyranny and private trespassing, precisely because the internet aggregates both information and effort, and because the government/criminals are small compared to the number of people out there with the will to pay attention and stop them (and, as I said, with equal access to the same information). My conclusion is that the technology is most definitely worthwhile.

This example is almost the opposite in every way. These recordings would be private, not public, available to criminals and vast, powerful corporations but not consumers, so they don't self-correct for the potential power abuses inherent in the system. And there appears to be no worthwhile benefit to this implementation of the technology--at least, not one to the public at large who has to deal with the problems. The only "positive" result is targeted advertising, which as many in this thread have pointed out, can be incredibly annoying, invasive, far off-base ("all girls want to buy make-up, not video-games!"), and to the sole benefit of large corporations who seem to be doing fine without it.

Therefore I am perfectly happy to stand in the way of any "progress" which, when you look at it closely, reveals itself to be regression.

--

Amnesiasoft wrote:Actually Malice, I think you missed the point EstLladon was trying to make about it being more secure with facial recognition. I believe he was implying that facial recognition data would be tied into your credit card, preventing anyone but a very similar looking person from using it as well...


I did not miss it. I read it, agreed with it, and therefore ignored it to address the part of his post I felt needed a response.

--

EstLladon wrote:
Amnesiasoft wrote:Actually Malice, I think you missed the point EstLladon was trying to make about it being more secure with facial recognition. I believe he was implying that facial recognition data would be tied into your credit card, preventing anyone but a very similar looking person from using it as well...

For example yes. I didn't state the actual way it can be implemented, but this kind of technology can certainly be used for you to be actually more protected from unauthorized access to really important information about you. I think it is ok when people know things about me. It is not ok when they can pretend to be me to somebody else, though.


Look at it this way. If you were a criminal, you would wish to hide your activities, yes? You would probably not say "I think it is okay when people know things about me," because you would be trying to keep your crimes separate from your life and vice-versa. Hopefully you would logically decide that you prefer not to be recorded in public places.

If I've gotten you that far, now imagine that some integral piece of your identity has been criminalized. It is now illegal to be of a certain nationality or gender or race. You're in the exact same situation, only now it's the government that's at fault, not you. You're just trying to live as a white/male/Russian (or whatever), and the cameras everywhere are making it very easy for the police to find you and put you in jail. In that case, you would also decide that you prefer not to be recorded in public places, and you would come to that decision out of a fair sense of self-preservation.

Theoretically a network of cameras recording people in public would have few, if any negative effects. In a perfect world they would catch shoplifters, show you exactly the products you need, make shopping easier. In reality, however, they will lead to crime, to further advertising invasions of privacy, and possibly to political persecution. It is a tool too powerful to be left in the hands of a private organization, too powerful to be left in the hands of the government. It's a line we shouldn't cross.

Just because you don't value your privacy does not mean it is not valuable.

I think that it is possible that society with more openly accessible information can be no more possibly harmful to individual person in average than it is now.


Just to repeat myself: one of the problems with this information is that it would not be openly accessible. It would be accessed only by employees of a private company, acting on either the orders of profit-motivated superiors or their own criminal agendas.

Can it be that some people want to know something about you only because you are hiding it? Forbidden fruit and what not.


Some people want to know stuff about you so that they can impersonate you, steal from you, harm you, get you to pay them more money, or punish you undeservedly. They're the ones you need to be worried about.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby EstLladon » Tue Feb 03, 2009 10:34 am UTC

Malice wrote:Look at it this way. If you were a criminal, you would wish to hide your activities, yes? You would probably not say "I think it is okay when people know things about me," because you would be trying to keep your crimes separate from your life and vice-versa. Hopefully you would logically decide that you prefer not to be recorded in public places.

If I've gotten you that far, now imagine that some integral piece of your identity has been criminalized. It is now illegal to be of a certain nationality or gender or race. You're in the exact same situation, only now it's the government that's at fault, not you. You're just trying to live as a white/male/Russian (or whatever), and the cameras everywhere are making it very easy for the police to find you and put you in jail. In that case, you would also decide that you prefer not to be recorded in public places, and you would come to that decision out of a fair sense of self-preservation.

Why would somebody want to be a criminal? I think that increasing accessability of information will increase tolerance to different races, sexual preferences etc. not decrease it. These things can be criminalized only if only small fraction of people get caught on being for example gay. You cannot enforce anti-gay law against all 10%(or how much it really is) of population that are gay.
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Re: Advertisements watching people

Postby Malice » Tue Feb 03, 2009 11:31 am UTC

EstLladon wrote:Why would somebody want to be a criminal?


I never said they would. I said that if a particular law is unjust, people may inadvertently become criminals, and it is better if the tools to catch them are not perfect.

I think that increasing accessability of information will increase tolerance to different races, sexual preferences etc. not decrease it.

Could you explain how this will increase the availability of information? It's not as though Macy's is going to make its recordings public.

Also, I did not mean that this will lead to intolerance. I said it would make destructive actions based on intolerance easier. For example, if police officers had X-ray vision, it would allow them to search for people with stolen goods but it would also allow them to search for people with, say, a Koran in their house. Increasing invasion of privacy does not necessarily make the abuse of power more likely; it "merely" makes abuse of power more effective.

These things can be criminalized only if only small fraction of people get caught on being for example gay. You cannot enforce anti-gay law against all 10%(or how much it really is) of population that are gay.


It's been done before. To use just one example, Americans enforced laws against the Japanese during World War II (using the technology and techniques available at the time to find the Japanese in order to force them into internment camps). There are plenty of others. You can target specific people, or squelch political dissent (look at what the SS did).

But what you're essentially saying is that civil disobedience becomes overwhelming as long as a large enough area of the population is motivated by personal danger. Ignoring the risk of this happening to smaller groups, my point is that as technology advances and privacy shrinks, the number of people required to successfully resist government oppression goes up.
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