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Privacy Critics Raise Alarm over Pokémon GO's Collect-It-All Power


Privacy Critics Raise Alarm over Pokémon GO's Collect-It-All Power

Nadia Prupis, staff writer

The runaway success of the interactive augmented reality game Pokémon GO was overshadowed this week by privacy complaints, prompting the app to issue an update to its policies—but critics, including Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), remained concerned that its parent company is still trying to "catch them all."


Here's an idea. Stay off the damned internet and apps and go out and play hide and go seek or capture the flag with your friends. That way you keep your privacy, get in shape, and still have fun.


This game should set off alarms about privacy. The whole issue has been avoided in the presidential campaigns but it needs to be addressed by Congress. Ultimately, the solution is probably to have companies require people to pay for social media and apps and make that the method by which companies earn money as well as ads. Allowing them to make money by collecting personal data and selling it on the scale that it is occurring should be banned because it can only lead to a loss of privacy which is a very serious matter even if many people do not care at all about privacy. Free social media and apps for the most part are not really free and the price in loss of privacy is steep. When you add to this type of data gathering the advances in facial recognition software and all the cameras in the stores and on the streets we do seem to be heading toward a total surveillance society. Add to that self-driving cars which provide information on wherever you travel and smart appliances which reveal information about what is going on in your home it seems clear this is not the future we want. What is driving this is profit making in Silicon Valley and other places were high tech companies can be found. Because high tech things can be created they are whether we want them or not with goal of making more money.


From the article:

Rotenberg noted to the WSJ, "I think people care about their privacy but the reality is that there is very little they can do about it and they know that."

Actually there is a LOT people can do about it:


Why is it so important to carry a network device, when WE KNOW they are data-mining our lives and personal information?

Can we truly not imagine ourselves demanding, and acting on our demand for, a system that FORBIDS such data-mining and selling of our personal information? Really? Just not imaginable. Certainly not important enough to warrant actually organizing, or SUFFERING the HORROR of slowing down the accelerating pace of technological development, or missing out on Pokemon for crissake! Have some sense of priority webwalk! How can you even allow yourself to imagine life without the latest devices, capabilities, and apps? THE HORROR!

Seriously. We sell our souls for apps, toys, games, and the ability to chat with people who are elsewhere.

But the actual horror, is the intentionally compromised network (corporate and state surveillance spiders web) that we so eagerly join despite it being designed to serve the corporate profiteers and surveillance state, and serve us up to the corporate profiteers and surveillance state.

The true horror is that we CANNOT EVEN IMAGINE demanding that network design and function SERVE OUR NEEDS, instead of SERVING US UP FOR LOOTING AND CONTROL.

We CANNOT IMAGINE giving up any momentary convenience or distraction - let alone imagine undergoing any real difficulty - and fighting until our demands are met. We're just along for the ride, and so excited to play Pokemon. Fer crissake.


1- This is just another form of escapism from True Reality.
2- Technology: A tool to eliminate jobs....... You can blame China & Mexico for job losses, but the real cause is closer to home.
3- Technology may soon give you more free time than you want.
4. Facebook.... more aptly Face Down...as one tracks their screen continuously....

Soon technology will displace the need for humans..... Silcon Valley to Silicon World.


Good old Al Frankin finds a safe place to play "dissident". How quaint.

Okay Al, why not make a speech on the Senate floor about how mass NSA surveillance of citizens needs to stop, and now.

We'll watch to see when CSPAN covers it Frank. Okay Frank, ready, set, GO!!!!!


This is absolutely a red herring. I was proud to not own a cellphone for years but had to get one for work. In the two years since I've downloaded zero apps as I don't agree to Google's Draconian terms and conditions to access their 'app store.' Just by entering the app store you're agreeing to this breach in privacy, regardless of if the app is Pokémon or whatever the hell else the flavor of the week is. I've no doubt they help themselves to my data anyways, I just try to avoid knowingly giving consent wherever I can.


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This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.


Nope, it's the equivalent of opening the door and inviting a total stranger to help himself to whatever is available.

Agree with you. Some people are just too ignorant to use modern technology. They can cause harm to themselves and others.

BTW, apparently this is a free app and there's ways to opt out of certain options in it or one does not have to download and use it if one is concerned about privacy.


Me as well. When I don't have to have it on me, I leave the damn thing at home.


A continuation of the "privatization of the commons". And, yes, we do have a choice.


if the gov't can collect-it-all, it follows suit that corporations will try to do the same. it needs to stop somewhere. I was absolutely infuriated when microsoft decided to change my name on my email account to use my youtube user name- totally without my knowledge! I haven't yet been able to disassociate the two. The only choice anyone has is to not use the internet at all or be completely taken advantage of. For me, I don't consider that a choice. None of these businesses care about their customers! The internet experience has seriously diminished.