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Facebook is like a Casino. They'll try to maneuver to keep you engaged and contain you in their bubble. However, if you're able to leave or cut your usage, they extend no influence whatsoever. (Don't have mobile apps installed, block their trackers, don't use Facebook login, etc) There are lots of ways to communicate outside of Facebook, including other messaging apps that help you form social networks outside of it. My extended family use Line for communication.

Google on the other hand is like the road. You can't avoid the road.




> However, if you're able to leave or cut your usage, they extend no influence whatsoever.

My friends often upload pictures of me, tagged with GPS coordinates and user; And even though most have stopped tagging me (as I have asked), Facebook often does offer them to tag me, which means that Facebook has enough pictures of me to identify me in random pictures (even though I never uploaded a single one myself).

Google collects information from users themselves, and have some info from people mailing them (if you are not on google yourself, it's likely more than half your emails are still coming or going to a google server).

But Facebook has co-opted your friends and family to spy on you, all day every day. Very much big brother.


When you upload photos to Facebook as part of an album, my experience is it doesn't even ask: it just goes ahead and tags people it recognizes, and it even sends them a push notification that you did that even before you click "save" on the album (it even attempts to live synchronize the text you are typing as the album description, which is insane).


In my imaginary screenplay, a guy is hiding from the US government, but the NSA will find him because they have access to Facebook's face recognition system, and he happens to be in the background of a photo a tourist took.. "We have a face recognition hit, he's in... Thailand!"


What do you mean by live synchronizing the description?


Like, every few seconds the description of the in-progress album is synchronized to the live album you don't even realize is live yet.


Facebook is worst than the KGB


You can turn this off. You don't need to ask your friends to stop. https://www.facebook.com/help/187272841323203


I'm willing to bet the difference is purely cosmetic. Facebook likely still runs facial recognition on all uploaded photos even if it doesn't suggest tags.


Not only that, they need to do facial recognition for that setting to work.

>When you turn off tag suggestions, Facebook won’t suggest that people tag you in photos that look like you.

Otherwise, how would they know it looks like you?


> which means that Facebook has enough pictures of me to identify me in random pictures (even though I never uploaded a single one myself).

Facebook probably uses more than just facial recognition, it can also use the metadata. They know who uploaded it, so they can narrow down the "list of candidate faces" from 7 billion to the much smaller number of people your friend knows/tags people in photos.


You can't avoid FB either. It tracks you even if you're not logged in, and even if you don't have an account. And by tracking you across sites it can infer your age group, gender, sexual orientation, political leanings, income bracket, and other personal preferences through simple co-visitation mining. And they know your rough location via geolocation, too, as well as how many people live in your household, whether you have kids and how old they are (assuming they browse the web), etc. None of this requires you to volunteer any data about yourself, and none of this (in the US) requires your consent.


> It tracks you even if you're not logged in, and even if you don't have an account. And by tracking you across sites it can infer your age group, gender, sexual orientation, political leanings, income bracket, and other personal preferences through simple co-visitation mining.

I've logged into Facebook in incognito mode for the last decade. It's really not that difficult to avoid doing this. By contrast, I might visit a dozen different Google services over the course of the day, their apps are a lot more indispensable (mobile web Maps is no fun), etc so it's a lot higher effort to do so for them.


Sure you can -- install an adblocker or one of the other extensions that allows you to block FB tracking. I agree that that only protects those tech-savvy enough to know how FB is tracking you and what to do about it, but there are steps we can take while fighting against corporate mass surveillance.


The book Addiction by Design is really good for understanding the science of casinos and how social media may or may not be using those tactics. Not hard to spot the coincidences


The Classic "HOWTO" for software: Hooked by Nir Eyal (2009) https://amzn.com/dp/B00LMGLXTS

A New "History": Irresistible by Adam Alter (2017) https://amzn.com/dp/1594206643/

Your Recommendation: Addiction by Design by Natasha Dow Schüll (2014) https://amzn.com/dp/0691160880


Thanks for the links!


(thankfully I guess) there's so much trash in fb it's actually making it less engaging


Roads are pretty benign, and they don't steal your location data and store it in their database


I hate to break it to you but the state police and most toll road authorities have put an entire network of cameras on every major interstate and road system to be able to track cars.


Even outside the US this is true. I live in Lithuania and a couple years ago I started noticing cameras along the side of most highways. They've now started using them to enforce average speeds, but to everyone here it should be pretty clear they are tracking the movements of vehicles (whether intentional or not is a different question).

A lot of other European countries have automated toll roads (sometimes just for HGVs) which do the same thing.


One of the upshots at least of living in countries other than America that follow its worst practices are that they're generally much worse in execution, i.e. they end up making it obvious

So that's good at least


If that were true would there still be a need for amber alert?


Yes because cameras do not cover all parts of every road.


I don't live in America :P


Looks like you're from Wales. Here's a great national site that you can see the live traffic cameras:

http://www.traffic-wales.com/?lang=en-GB

Just filter the map by CCTV and choose the icon to view the live video.

Enjoy!


Seems like a single photo only for each camera, no "live"?


Most developed countries have similar systems in place. Heck, I'd wager that the US is lagging behind other countries in this area, primarily due to its size.


What is this list of most countries? I am certain this is illegal in Sweden, for example.



Having cameras and having an effective tracking system based on them is a big difference. (No idea about the swedish situation, but in Germany proposals to give police access to information from traffic enforcement cameras for criminal cases have been a huge topic)


If I can access the feed I can build a tracking system (how effective it is, is always a big variable).


No, but there are plenty of cameras in South Wales.




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