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It's Time for Action on Data Privacy (time.com)
114 points by deca6cda37d0 27 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 101 comments

Cook's version here is significantly stronger than Jobs'. Not that Jobs was wrong as far as he went, but merely being informed that you're about to be punched in the face doesn't actually make being punched in the face acceptable.

What we're missing today is the option to use normal products and services without any of this data sharing and telemetry going on when they aren't necessary for the normal functioning of the product or service, which the kinds that upset or concern people almost never are. We need to sever the ties between using everyday things and participating in data-based schemes that make the suppliers more money but are otherwise not necessary for what the customer was buying. Clearly the market has failed here and is in a race to the bottom, and that is the point where regulation/legislation should step in.

> What we're missing today is the option to use normal products and services without any of this data sharing and telemetry going on when they aren't necessary for the normal functioning of the product or service

You hit the nail on the head here, as far as I'm concerned.

I want to be able to use my real name, date of birth, gender; share my location or my medical information; input my financial details or my real phone number, all the while knowing that it's being used for exactly the purpose I keyed it in for to being with and not something else, on the side, via a third party, that I never asked for, paid for, or agreed to (because it was a buried in a 90,000 word legal document.)

I believe we will start to see a big wave of indie app developers bringing forward very privacy friendly apps just like we're seeing a big push in the indie gaming market for short, story heavy games opposing the 100-person Battle Royale, no-story junk we have today.

I'd love for you to be right. I would love for users to be happily willing to pony up for services that respect their privacy instead of free ones that don't.

How much do you think your average user is willing to pay each month for an email account?

I think it's pretty clear that the average user isn't willing to pay anything for an email account.

They are often "necessary" for monetization though, aren't they? A few privacy-minded people would probably pay a few bucks a month to use Google without tracking, ads etc, but I doubt that it would be a lot. And it wouldn't be cheap either, I'm afraid. Let's say you take what Gmail offers for free and buy it at ProtonMail - that'd be 20-30 euros a month just for Email. Who would spend hundreds of dollars a month to get today's average digital experience but with solid privacy? And who could actually afford to?

Be real on your price tag here, I pay 30€ a year (since around ten years) for an email/domain provider. More mainstream I also pay 2,99€ a month for iCloud storage wich also include email (should I wanted to) and lots of services.

Theses services are cheap, they are just not as mainstream as they should be. But your hundred dollar a month estimation is just a fear mongering excuse to stick with privacy reselling model.

On the side note, Google should start to wonder what drive the double digit growth of Apple services revenues. iTools was an experiment, .Mac was clumsy, MobileMe was a setback... But I think Apple pretty much nailed it with iCloud.

I'm not (knowingly) engaging in fear mongering, I just looked up what I'd pay at ProtonMail (privacy first) to have equal storage space I get at GMail (19GB; privacy last), and that's 20-30 euros. Looking at a web search engine, how much would that cost me? What about a place that syncs my images from my cell phone? Or Analytics for my blog? An OS for my smart phone? Google provides all that for free and finances it by mining the data users give them in return.

Apple gets something like $9bn a year to let Google be the default search engine. That's revenue for Apple, coming directly from Google's wish to get more data. If you remove that, will iphones be 10-20% more expensive?

It's not so much Google I'm worried about. I can choose to use other online services.

But I should be able to buy a car without the vendor tracking me everywhere I go, or a phone without it becoming a beacon that stores use to follow me around as I do my shopping, or a TV that just lets me watch a show without phoning home to tell the manufacturer all about it. None of the data sharing in these cases is in any way essential to the device I've bought, it's just being added because it can be, as an extra revenue stream at the expense of my privacy and potentially security.

I agree, but it would increase the prices, right? Would you buy a phone that doesn't include "we'll sell the user's data" in the financial planning at twice the price? And pay another premium for a mobile provider that doesn't actively track you & sells profile data?

I'm not so sure about it being added just because they can make a few extra bucks. I believe it becomes part of the revenue system and drives down the margin they make on the actual product. Once somebody starts, everybody has to follow or they can't compete because their product is expensive.

With privacy minded people being a small minority, it probably doesn't make sense financially to cater to them in many markets. Emails is relatively simple, building a cell phone, or running a cell network, is not, so you don't do it for a handful of users.

What you describe may well be what is happening, and that is exactly why it is necessary to intervene at this point. By the same argument, if we didn't have safety or environmental standards, manufacturers would be in a race to the bottom in those areas as well. Sometimes you just have to say that a certain behaviour isn't acceptable, for the good of all. If that puts prices up, so be it, but I'm betting that since people managed to make and sell these products at commercially viable levels for many years before all this data grabbing came along, they'll manage just fine if the grabbing gets cut off as well.

I agree completely, if we want to change that, government has to be involved. There's little to no incentive for a company to change.

I doubt many users are fine with a price increase, and for some it may be prohibitive, and they'll not be happy to no longer be able to afford a smart phone. If your electricity provider only offered affordable rates in exchange for giving up a certain amount of privacy, I'm sure most people would still go for it. Most people need electricity much more than they need privacy.

I feel that's an externally enforced dichotomy though. Somebody said during a board meeting "let's force people to make this choice and we know they will choose convenience and cheap over privacy".

But it doesn't have to be this way. We need new players in the market that aren't that sleazy.

Will those "good players" be able to compete? And will they even get funding if it's required to start their business?

Unless you force everybody to not just dump toxic chemicals into the river, the company that doesn't will have to charge a lot more, and customers will go with those that do (if they live far enough from the river, or upstream from the dump site).

That is of course the crux of the issue.

I'd like to think -- believe if you will -- that things are changing. Many people want a safer environment for their kids and are thus more politically active.

Sadly they are a drop in the ocean still.

Even with that however, this crazed consumerism cannot last forever. Things will change. Not sure you and I will live to see it though.

The irony that the article isn't available in the EU because of data/privacy laws that time.com obviously thinks is too restricted so they decided to block the EU.

With uBlock Origin it works, a gray overlay on the page disappears after a while, but it still contacts:

- Cloudflare

- Google (several domains, fonts, Google proper, JS)

- https://segment.com (I read the landing page and don't understand what they do)

- wordpress.com

12 other domains are blocked

I think of Segment kind of like a routing layer for behavioral tracking data. Rather than installing N trackers on your site, you just add Segment's and then in your configuration for Segment you tell them where to route the tracking events (to Google Analytics, Mixpanel, whatever).

I think it goes beyond behavioral tracking data use cases as well.

So that's why I'm getting a "The page isn’t redirecting properly" message from my browser?

welcome to cookie policies in 2019. EU privacy breaks the internet for european IP ranges.

Well actually I'm glad that I'm protected by GDPR.

If I can't read time.com, that's their loss, not mine. If they are blocking EU users, that can only mean they were using ad bidding exchanges that violate users privacy and I want nothing to do with such publications.

Or maybe the rules are too crazy to keep up with and not worth their time and resources?

Who knows.

Rules are simple really - if you can identify me, you must provide a way for me to tell me what you know about me and to stop tracking me for any purpose at my discretion. Is it much to ask for?

If that's all it was, it would be easy. The problem is that GDPR compliance is a negotiation with lawyers and an ongoing threat of lawsuits for any precieved misstep. It means maintaining a legal entity (your Data Privacy Officer) who either reviews everything or who sets internal policies (both approaches have risks). For some companies it is worth it. For some it is not.

The lawsuits are mostly initiated by “ambulance chasers” and for that reason most of them will fail.

Also the data protection authorities are there for guidance too, not just for giving fines. You don’t need to hire lawyers, you can just contact your local DPA. And if you do that, and take steps to be compliant, you’re acting in good faith.

Fact of the matter is most publishers are not compliant because most publishers use bidding exchanges and the bidding exchanges currently leak user data in a way that cannot be GDPR-compliant, even with user consent.

But in such a case it is naive to blame the GDPR. We are talking about an entire industry built on profiling users based on leaked data and that needs to change.

Well said.

I can read it in Firefox if I allow scripts from time.com and cloudflare.com (using NoScript). I'm in UK. It also works in Dillo, which has no JavaScript support.

I have no problem accessing from Norway.

Even if qualified as an instance of “do good and talk about it”, Tim Cook's stance on this matter is rather untypical for not only the IT industry (see other comments in this thread). I for one see no alternative to legal regulations for stopping this race to the bottom.

And it is time for running whatever we want on our device.

I agree, but that problem can wait. Rooting out corporate mass surveillance before it strangles democratic society... that can’t wait.

I disagree. Limit what we can do on computing devices we own is the worst offence to a democratic mind. Data privacy is of course important, but we don't need Apple to fix that, we can fix it on our own once the first problem is addressed.

That is horrifically naive, as it would only solve the problem for the few. It would create a two tier society where the highly technically literate get privacy and everyone else are limited to whatever the big companies ship by default.

Apple's products already respect my privacy; they don't need to be "fixed." Further, it is absurd to contend that there will be a net gain in privacy by letting the unwashed masses choose random shit they found on the internet to control the core of their devices. After all, installing random shit from the internet has totally never been a problem for privacy, ever.

that doesn't seem to hold.

Once MS was forced to deal with their monopoly IE issues Firefox and then Chrome took off. Now to the point that Chrome is number 1 by user choice even if you remove Android from the picture.

It would most likely be number one on iOS as well if Apple actually allowed Devs to implement a browser engine because Chrome follows 10s possibly even 100s of standards that Safari is dropping the ball on.

The only single reason Apple can get away with this is their control over the platform and not allowing competition in that space.

That's not just bad for iOS users and lack of choice (Chrome is provably more secure than Safari so by not allowing it Apple is not allowing users to choose a more secure browser ... see vulnerability lists), it's also bad for the entire web at large. By Apple controlling all iOS users access to the internet they have an effective stranglehold on what standards get adopted.

> Chrome is provably more secure than Safari

What's the point of a "more secure" web browser that encourages you to sign in to the entire browser application with your Google account and leak huge amounts of your browsing habits to a company that derives incredible profits from your tracking your activities?

> Chrome is provably more secure than Safari

You’re going to have to back this up with evidence. Both browsers are similarly secure, which is to say, they are probably good enough that you probably have other things to worry about than how secure your browser is.

> Chrome follows 10s possibly even 100s of standards that Safari is dropping the ball on.

I went almost full Apple 14 months ago and I am yet to find a single website that I need that's not working at all or even well enough in Safari, desktop or mobile.

The only argument I've seen so far is "but standard X is new, we need it!" without ever saying why do you need it.

Care to elaborate?

Umh, for a long time people could use old IEs and say the same. I assume IE11 people will also not have any problems. Yet IE11 is why many people will not be able to use CSS Grid for a long time. Your argument makes no sense unless you say you WANT devs to exclude people with left-behind browsers.

You are shifting the topic with a flawed analogy. IE was breaking websites left and right. Safari doesn't.

Give me an example of Safari users getting significantly worse experience in a web service that they need in their everyday lives.

I'm not. I'm telling you why your argument makes no sense. People don't use features that would break safari.

> I am yet to find a single website that I need that's not working at all or even well enough in Safari, desktop or mobile.

This isn't a particulary great argument, since web developers are generally forced to adopt the lowest common denominator of what popular browsers implement.

"We need the latest standards" isn't a particularly great argument either. Web existed and flourished long before 90% of these new standards even came into being.

Once MS was forced to deal with their monopoly IE issues Firefox and then Chrome took off.

God no. MS abandoning their browser for a decade is the reason for why alternatives became dominant.

Chrome is #1 because of Google’s enormous marketing blitz for it, including advertising it directly on google.com.

To show the kind of real respect for privacy, we need to access every piece of code that we are running. If you don't have time or technical ability to do that, there are enough eyeballs out there.

Can apple do that? Or are you going to simply trust?

If you want to run entirely open source software on entirely open source hardware with every software component compiled by a personally verified compiler and with every hardware component manufactured under your personal scrutiny then you might have a point.

Otherwise you are ultimately forced to trust someone—probably many someones—and I'd rather place that trust in as few entities as possible.

For myself I've chosen an entity that I believe has an economic incentive to respect my privacy and has proven with their actions that they deserve my trust.

You are equivocating additional weak points and additional verifiers when you are using the word "trust" for both.

Having an additional entity the failure of which would lead to a failure of the system/product is an additional weak point. Obviously, you want as few of those as possible that you have to trust.

Having an additional entity that watches/checks what is going on is an additional verifier. Obviously, you want as many of those as possible that you can build your trust on.

You argument is essentially that you want fewer verifiers in order to have fewer weak points. That's just nonsense. By the same logic, you should prefer an intransparent dictatorship to a transparent democracy, because there are "fewer poeple to trust".

All things being equal thought, it’s always better to have access to source code rather than none at all.

Absolutely. And it's great that the option exists for anyone who has the technical literacy to understand how to benefit from that openness. But as soon as you encourage grandma to download Android roms, you can be certain that the internet will be flooded with dangerously exploited copies.

These things seem simple for us because we deal with them every day. We understand how to interpret the components of a URL. We understand the reason why these critical downloads are paired with sha256 hashes.

For most people on Earth, understanding computer security and the modes of trust in open source software is as likely as speaking Esperanto.

Yes, I’m well aware of the trade off here, and unfortunately I have not yet been able to find a solution that combines both benefits. As a technical user, I’d love to be able to mess with my device, but I can see the problems it can cause and why Apple might not want this to be available to their users.


>we don't need Apple to fix that, we can fix it on our own once the first problem is addressed.

AOSP has been around for 10 years. People choose the Android model every day, and it droves higher than they choose the iOS model.

Tankie arguments transferred to the data privacy world. This is great.

Sorry, I don’t understand what that means.

Tell that to the manufacturers of TVs, cars, home alarms, AV receivers, smart watches, digital cameras, smart home devices, dash cams, game consoles, universal remotes, cordless phones, cable tv boxes, baby monitors and printers.

The world is full of devices that are not open platforms for alternative operating systems. If you don't like Apple's choice in focusing on their particular solution which involves intimate software-hardware integration, the answer is to buy from a competitor. There are lots of them and they make an extremely diverse array of alternatives.

Personally I'm pleased that Apple is making the product the way they do. If Apple changed to suit your needs, that would come at the expense of my needs.

"If Apple changed to suit your needs, that would come at the expense of my needs."

Not really, if apple locks down iOS devices by default, and would create the ability to opt-out for developers/people who want to be able to create/install their own code, nothing changes for you/most people. Much like how SIP works on macOS, enabled by default, ability to disable if needed.

This is an interesting idea. Say, on first boot of your new iPhone, you get a screen that says, "Which experience do you want?" with options, "Apple's curated" or "Choose your own adventure" with the proper caveats for the latter: "Choosing this option will allow you to install 3rd party software not reviewed by Apple. Such software could contain features which could harm your device. Some award-winning features designed by Apple will be unavailable in this mode. You may revert to the "Apple Curated Experience" at any time by navigating to Settings -> General -> My Experience." In other words, keep the walled garden, but give your users a key to the gate. The question is, will we then see users demand Apple make their software available outside the gate? I would want Apple to make no commitments to developing there. No Music.app, no iCloud, no iMessages, no Safari. You get a 3rd party store with 3rd party apps on Apple's hardware.

This is a textbook example of Whataboutism. No one is saying that TVs, etc. shouldn't be different, but asking for more flexibility of software on Apple's devices is a reasonable follow-up to Tim Cook's stated desire for more data privacy.

Your following statement is roughly equivalent to saying the following, which I don't endorse: "If you don't like Google's choice in focusing on their particular solution which involves intimate user-data integration for more intelligent assistance, the answer is to buy from a competitor."

You can buy from a competitor to avoid data privacy issues as well. However, to some people that doesn't justify offering and marketing an option that compromises that value.

> "If you don't like Google's choice in focusing on their particular solution which involves intimate user-data integration for more intelligent assistance, the answer is to buy from a competitor."

No, that's exactly right.

Competitors exist. Using them makes them stronger.

well, phones and pads are good starters

update: I compare it to computing slavery.

Yes, taking on large market monoplists has always worked so well in the past, let's try that again /s

You don't need to demand Apple change. There are countless phones and pads available from other companies, many of which will satisfy your requirements.

Look, I am not saying these things to satisfy my personal needs, and I am not demanding Apple anything, that's only a piece of advice. A reminder that there is a bigger elephant in the room. I have been using Android since my iphone6 retired, and everything is great.

Also time to give up user data to the Chinese government, apparently.


Being forced to follow local laws in the countries where you do business is one thing.

Who is forcing Google to buy copies of everyone's credit card transaction data so they can expand the surveillance of their users in their offline life?

>Google has been able to track your location using Google Maps for a long time. Since 2014, it has used that information to provide advertisers with information on how often people visit their stores. But store visits aren’t purchases, so, as Google said in a blog post on its new service for marketers, it has partnered with “third parties” that give them access to 70 percent of all credit and debit card purchases.


Apple gives iCloud data to the US government too, and, as a sibling comment has mentioned, only gives data to the Chinese government if you are a Chinese citizen. The correct response to this is not “Apple is selling us out to China”, it’s “Apple should encrypt iCloud data at rest and end-to-end, without storing the keys, so nobody can have it”.

If Apple did this then they wouldn't be able to offer a password reset feature, leading to user data loss. For a consumer-oriented company, data loss is unacceptable.

Only if you're a Chinese citizen in China.

From the article: "Apple to move Chinese iCloud keys to China servers...Once on Chinese soil, government agencies will be able to request information through the Chinese legal system, which lacks the transparency, checks or oversight of its American counterpart."

If you think the US Government would never act without transparency, checks or oversight, you are being delusional. And factually wrong.

Apple is complying with the local laws, just as it does in all other countries. The suggestion that Apple should breach these laws—or exit the market entirely—is absurd and unproductive.

The difference is that traditional "free" governments don't maintain the entrenchment of existing political officials and the competitive dominance of their own domestic industry as a defensive justification for using their legal system to force companies to disclose, steal, falsify, or destroy information in secret.

Companies like Apple, Google and Microsoft are free to challenge court orders from the US or other friendly governments, even those ordered in secret, and they regularly do so. You don't hear about it, but it's pretty common. And these cases do get the scrutiny of many eyes, following similar legal paths as more traditional court challenges, only without all the news coverage.

Have you tried replacing "China" with "Hitler Germany" in your argument? Do you think it still applies? Or can you explain why not?

Interestingly, IBM successfully used similar arguments after WW2 and escaped with barely a scratch on their reputation.

He says there should be a

"Federal Clearinghouse"

Where users can

"Correct and delete personal data online"

How does that not definitionally centralize data...

Straight into Governments' view?

Can Apple refuse to give information to the US government? Can they even disclose it if they do? After the Snowden NSA revelations it seems any corporation in the US is suspect. And that's not even counting the fact that all the telecoms sell your data anyway.

I don’t think so, no. But I believe that they are moving towards the goal of keeping data in an encrypted format that they cannot read themselves, or not collecting it all.

Is "content" "data"? (Assume "content" is something the user generates and intentionally shares with one or more other users via a computer network. It could be a text message, a web page, a PDF, a photo, a video, whatever.)

For example, when he says companies should avoid collecting identifiable data is he arguing against companies that collect user "content" (e.g., a cache of googleusercontent webpages, or a backup of photos stored in an Apple iCloud datacenter)?

Or is he arguing against promoting user "accounts" where users identify themselves to companies to receieve the "benefits of signing in" or perhaps as a absolute requirement for access to "content" created by someone else via the company middleman?

Much of the "data" that concerns privacy activists is what they might call "metadata". It is not the collection of "content" that alarms them, and no doubt the companies collecting it would remind us this content has been voluntarily shared.

However... without the collection of "content" first by a middleman, there is no metadata for these companies to collect.

We could have a debate about regulating the middlemen. We could try to define what their obligations should be toward users. A more interesting conversation IMO would be about how we can use technology to eliminate the middleman.

Tim Cook has been a single light of hope in this vast dark ocean of surveillance capitalism. I’m so tired of hearing the “nothing to hide, nothing to fear” type responses.

Privacy is not “hiding.” I shouldn’t have to hide to keep my business, well, my business. I believe I have the right to carry on with my life without this all-seeing eye recording every part of me and using it to con me into buying, or selling it to the highest bidder.

I was such an idealist about freeing information and empowering people. And I’m no fan of government regulation. But we know business won’t regulate itself when it’s either the bottom line or what’s best for people.

Yes, it’s time for action.

It's not the "nothing to hide" folks you fear, its the general crowd who couldn't give two shits that their tech is phoning home all the time until something they find private gets leaked and causes them embarrassment.

suprisingly few people have been burned badly enough for anyone other than Apple to take this stance on privacy. Apple is doing a good deed fighting for privacy and data control being returned to the consumers but its a fight against human laziness and the willingness to go with the easier option, instead of chosing the platform that actually respects their privacy and rights to data.

Apple by definition is in the minority when it comes to fighting for privacy and at this point its a little too late for anyone to care other than tech savvy apple users who intentionally chose apple for privacy. The rest of the market has traded privacy for all you can eat buffets of information and content. And people actually like all you can eat buffets, who would've thought?

It's not the "nothing to hide" folks you fear, its the general crowd who couldn't give two shits that their tech is phoning home all the time until something they find private gets leaked and causes them embarrassment.

I'm not sure that's a fair criticism. Among my non-technical friends, several have expressed concern or even active disapproval about things they know are happening in this area. They just don't see that they have any alternative. How do you buy any modern phone or participate in any modern social networks or buy any modern car -- all things most regular people need to integrate with society and live a normal life today -- without surrendering huge amounts of your personal privacy and potentially security?

Until Apple enables a user to deny all Internet access to an app then they haven't really committed to data control.

This is a strange benchmark. Along those standards, Linux or BSD also haven't committed to data control. Like Linux or BSD, you can set up the packet filter to do so. Like Linux or BSD there are no user-friendly, out-of-the-box ways to do it.

On macOS it is at least easy to do using third-party applications (e.g. Little Snitch or TripMode).

> Along those standards, Linux or BSD also haven't committed to data control.

Well yes, they haven't. Not in a convenient way anyway. I've had a sysadmin friend explaining me the lenghts you have to go to to achieve such results. To him it was easy. I just said "feck that".

The fact that every single app isn't sandboxed is also pretty disappointing.

  unshare -n

Thank you for illustrating my point ;).

It was mostly a joke, but at the same time this is what makes Docker, et al possible. A firewall alone is not much of a sandbox.

Not sure why you're downvoted. I'd jump with joy if the next iOS / Win10 / Linux / BSD / Android version allows you to completely stop an app from using a network connection, Wi-Fi or otherwise.

Disallowing 3G/4G to apps is not enough.

But of course nobody is gonna do it since ads are served in hundreds of thousands of Bejeweled clones and Apple/Google wouldn't want displeased app developers letting that ad revenue dry up. :(

I think this is a thing in China, where you can turn off all data access to apps?

Whether he's the origin or just fond of the sentiment, the "nothing to hide" argument is commonly attributed to Joseph Goebbels in the 1930s. I feel like that should be pointed out more. Perhaps it would make people question that line of thinking more...

While I usually question the sincerity of the leadership of large ccompanies (whether they really believe what they are saying or if they are just trying to increase shareholder value). But it strikes me that Tim Cook, being a professional gay man of his age, almost certainly has had times in his past where privacy was a big concern. Especially during times when it was much less acceptable to be gay, especially in the corporate world. He likely intimately understands the reality of the "nothing to hide" farce.

My understanding is that it is only after Apple failed at setting up their own advertising business that they jumped into the privacy bandwagon.

Now I agree that when you want to achieve something, there is nothing to be gained from questioning the motivations of powerful allies (which in this case I think are more about attacking the competition than guenine concerns about privacy). But it does mean that Apple’s stance could change quickly if its business interest evolves.

Not complaining, I am all for privacy regulations, merely a word of caution.

My understanding is that it is only after Apple failed at setting up their own advertising business that they jumped into the privacy bandwagon.

- Introduction iAd: 2010

- Introduction of iMessage with end-to-end encryption: 2011

- Introduction of the secure enclave: 2013 (iPhone 5s). Remember that Apple plans several years ahead, so the secure enclave was probably already in the cards ~2011.

- Shutdown iAd: 2016

The timelines just don't match up. Apple has been pursuing a focus on encryption and privacy since at least 2011. Remember that Apple was the first to roll out an end-to-end encrypted messenger to hunderds of million users, years before WhatsApp.

(I am not contesting that their focus on privacy is for marketing reasons. We don't know, it could be or Tim Cook has strong beliefs on this topic.)

iAd stood out because it didn't share customer data with advertisers as was the standard in the industry.

>Apple has a lot of knowledge regarding its users,but what it doesn’t do with that data is share it with advertisers very freely. That makes Madison Avenue very mad.

>rather than offering a cookie-based ad-tracking and targeting mechanism, it essentially requires partners to tell it what kind of audience it needs to reach, and then trust that Apple will handle the rest, AdAge says. And it’s well worth noting that Apple prioritizes customer privacy here over a big potential upside in ad revenue.

>what it doesn’t do is hand over the keys to all that data and let advertisers plug into it directly with their own data-mining and targeting software. That’s not standard for the ad industry and that’s likely the reason a few Madison Avenue feathers are ruffled over their approach.


It's not impossible to sell ads without spying on users on behalf of your advertising customers, it's just less profitable.

iAd failed because they refused to compromise privacy.

Apple failed at the business of mining users private data, its CEO takes a moral stance against it.

On some level you take what you can get.

We already have a good definition and framework for privacy, thanks Tim.

We don't need a watered-down definition that plays to your current business model and leaves out bits that don't.


Which roughly translates to: "competing devices are too cheap".

You’re going to have to provide more context here, since otherwise your comment doesn’t seem very substantial.

continue button doesnt even work without disabling all my browser security. no thanks.


> Sure, Tim, so why is the App Store infested with apps that phone home to Google Analytics? Why does every other IOS framework report to FaceBook et al?

Because the App Store did not have guidelines for this sort of thing, and unfortunately retrofitting these would kill the App Store completely.

> Or, they would provide their own analytics service that works the way Tim says it should.

Why would anyone use it, given that it would be less useful than Google Analytics?

> Locking every iDevice by default so that it can’t be reused


> grinding up products for recycling instead of keeping them in service just to make an extra buck

The materials are then reused for manufacturing. It's not like that goes straight to a landfill.

> they would relay a message to the owner of a locked iPhone/iPad so they would have the option to unlock it for those who bought it second-hand but didn’t know to get the device taken out of Find-My-Phone, and for those of us who run charitable re-use centres—-we get locked iPads & iPhones because the owners who donated them didn’t know to unlock them. They’re e-waste.

I don't think you understand how this works, at all. If you can unlock a locked phone, then there's no point of there being a lock on it…

> why don’t you stop releasing a new OS every year and focus on fixing the bugs in every framework that render them both unusable and insecure

What do you think the thousands of engineers at Apple are doing?

> We don’t need new emojis or stickers

You don't need new emojis and stickers. Over a billion people use iPhones, not just you.

> Sorry, but this guy is the worst leader Apple has ever had, including Scully.

> Tim Cook, you are a liar and you suck.

This is just a straight up personal attack. There's no substance in your comment at all.

> > Locking every iDevice by default so that it can’t be reused

> What?

A big problem when buying/selling used ipads is the "icloud lock". Essentially it's an anti-theft lock. But it's often frustrating in many non-theft cases.

If you buy an iPhone or iPad and it's not unregistered from the original owner's icloud account, there is no way to do that. At all. You cannot factory reset it. You cannot erase it's disk (it'll refuse to activate).

So this makes a great many iDevices useless. It does, I must say, prevent theft. It's certainly not a one-way street.

It only took you 5 sentences to then go on an off-tangent about the "locked iDevices", ecology and buggy frameworks. Especially having in mind that everybody else is already doing 100% recycling and their frameworks are flawless! And of course, they all have unlocked bootloaders. Right?

You're basically just ranting.

Please stay on topic.

I think you're making some fair points but the fact that you're going ad hominem very much detracts from that. One man alone wouldn't have the power to change a whole culture of misuse and overreach.

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