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Author Topic: They listen in on us...  (Read 142 times)

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Online Maxx

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They listen in on us...
« on: January 30, 2017, 04:14:21 AM »
This morning I get my first video Skype call from my daughter. She thinks I am living Texas and I didn't bother to enlighten her that I wasn't. I mention to her that it is nice to have a job to go to or a business or something to occupy your time. So she mentions Uber. That I should try Uber. Even if I was living in the States it is not something that would interest me. Anyway a few hours later I check my Yahoo account. There is an ad for Uber.



So I send her this:

Quote
Maxx <maxx@yahoo.com>
To   Maxine Today at 1:04 PM

Hey Maxxine

Have you ever noticed how you get ads from things you discussed over the internet? You had mentioned Uber to me a few hours ago.  Then the second message I get today is an ad from Uber. You know THEY must listen in on us using voice recognition technology.




The word 'Uber' was never typed or put into a search engine. Neither was a Uber or a related website visited. Just the word spoken a few times in Skype video chat.

Your thoughts?

Online andrewfi

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Re: They listen in on us...
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2017, 05:27:08 AM »
It is possible - Microsoft provides the majority of Yahoo's desktop search results and SKype is a Microsoft property.

However, Uber are advertising hugely at the moment and the ad may have been triggered by other stuff, criteria that would, to most of us, seem entirely unrelated but which, in aggregate, placed you into Uber's campaign demographic.

I did a quick check and I can't see anything that suggests behaviour of the type you suggest - apart from a few nutty folks who think that tinfoil hats are de rigeur in modern society. Microsoft DOES monitor info such as age etc for ad targeting purposes but that is, it seems, for use within the Skype application, not externally.

Remember too that you are living in Georgia. This is a low value area for advertisers and thus not many advertisers will be using traffic within Georgia. That means that for large spenders, such as Uber, who only pay for ads when the ads are clicked on, that such ads might be showing up almost as 'filler' ads. The cost to the advertiser is very, very low but so to is the relevance to any given page viewer.

"For what else is the life of man but a kind of play in which men in various costumes perform until the director motions them offstage?" -Erasmus

Online Confederate

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Re: They listen in on us...
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2017, 09:19:38 AM »
It is possible - Microsoft provides the majority of Yahoo's desktop search results and SKype is a Microsoft property.

However, Uber are advertising hugely at the moment and the ad may have been triggered by other stuff, criteria that would, to most of us, seem entirely unrelated but which, in aggregate, placed you into Uber's campaign demographic.

I did a quick check and I can't see anything that suggests behaviour of the type you suggest - apart from a few nutty folks who think that tinfoil hats are de rigeur in modern society. Microsoft DOES monitor info such as age etc for ad targeting purposes but that is, it seems, for use within the Skype application, not externally.

Remember too that you are living in Georgia. This is a low value area for advertisers and thus not many advertisers will be using traffic within Georgia. That means that for large spenders, such as Uber, who only pay for ads when the ads are clicked on, that such ads might be showing up almost as 'filler' ads. The cost to the advertiser is very, very low but so to is the relevance to any given page viewer.

His skype address is Texas. If you've seen the movie Snowden you would agree this is certainly possible.


Online andrewfi

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Re: They listen in on us...
« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2017, 09:30:59 AM »
In this context, 'they' is ad networks.

It certainly seems that 'they' do NOT listen to what we say although is is true that Microsoft (Skype) now records both audio and text conversations.

One takes it for granted that one's phone conversations are recorded but the sheer volume of data means that state listeners only listen to important conversations or, perhaps, pick up on keywords from people in certain, pre-defined, groups.

For advertising where a Click in Georgia probably nets the ad network 4 or 5 cents per click do you really think that there is profit for the ad network to pay to access Maxx's calls and then, almost instantly, respond to the information therein with particular ads, especially when the ad is not relevant to the viewer and in a country where the service provider does not even operate?

Maxx simply saw a filler ad from a very large advertiser.

"For what else is the life of man but a kind of play in which men in various costumes perform until the director motions them offstage?" -Erasmus

Online Confederate

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Re: They listen in on us...
« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2017, 12:10:48 PM »
In this context, 'they' is ad networks.

It certainly seems that 'they' do NOT listen to what we say although is is true that Microsoft (Skype) now records both audio and text conversations.

One takes it for granted that one's phone conversations are recorded but the sheer volume of data means that state listeners only listen to important conversations or, perhaps, pick up on keywords from people in certain, pre-defined, groups.

For advertising where a Click in Georgia probably nets the ad network 4 or 5 cents per click do you really think that there is profit for the ad network to pay to access Maxx's calls and then, almost instantly, respond to the information therein with particular ads, especially when the ad is not relevant to the viewer and in a country where the service provider does not even operate?

Maxx simply saw a filler ad from a very large advertiser.

In this case I agree with you 100%. I was only saying I believe it is possible. Remember the movie Minority Report with Tom Cruise? We can see how corporations want to track our every move and constantly bombard us.