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Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Facebook’s creepy new speakers are freaking people out

Facebook is rolling out its first-ever tech gadget — and it’s every bit as creepy as you’d expect.

The social-networking giant on Monday unveiled a new line of voice-activated home speakers with screens that enable video chats with friends and family — but critics said they sound more like Big Brother spy devices.

In addition to collecting data on users’ commands with Alexa-powered artificial intelligence software, the Portal and Portal+ speakers are equipped with cameras that can follow users around a room and enhance the sound of their voices when they talk.

“Facebook’s like … look at this cool new gadget that eavesdrops on you and does creepy stuff with the info it collects,’” tweeted Ido Kolovaty, a professor at the University of Tulsa College of Law.

Indeed, CEO Mark Zuckerberg this spring reportedly pushed back the Portal’s launch date by nearly half a year after the Cambridge Analytica privacy scandal blew up.

Anticipating the privacy concerns, Facebook said Monday it is equipping the Portals with a cover to block the camera lens when users want privacy.

Users can likewise deactivate the microphone by pressing a button on the device — although critics noted that it’s not clear if there’s a way to turn it off with a voice command.

In a Monday blog post, Facebook noted that it “doesn’t listen to, view, or keep the contents of your Portal video calls.”Modal TriggerFacebook



Anonymous said...

Yes, i ((predicted)) this Event #Years# ago.! The Rise of the Machine's. Yes. They ((NWO liberal puppet maters)) want Robots to take ""Youre"" mind! Mindless drone s for There bidding! Say No ! To Soros and Socialist Robots .! "

Anonymous said...

Saw the original film '1984' many years ago. Alexa, Siri, whatever FB is calling their version...all are creepy and I can't understand why anyone would have one in their house?

Anonymous said...

Not in my house. People act as though those things are mandatory. Probably would have been if Hillary Clinton had been elected. Don't get one.