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News Disney testing smart speakers in guest rooms at Disney's Yacht and Beach Club

bpadair32

Active Member
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:rolleyes:

Given what we've learned about so-called smart phones, so-called smart TVs, and devices like Alexa, is that an unreasonable topic to discuss?
Nope. Not unreasonable as long as people can talk in facts. Most people can't. Look at earlier parts of this thread "my friend said... my family member told me..." etc. People discuss these issues with techno-panic and anecdotes instead of facts.

The fact is that any technology that you carry with you on a daily basis or have in your home has the possibility of being used by bad actors or to gather your data in a way you don't like. It is also a fact that there are benefits to be had from accepting that risk. Each person has to decide if that trade-off is worth it to them. Its fine to think its not worth it. It is not fine to act like people are dumb or misinformed if they do want to accept it.
 

TinkerBelle8878

Well-Known Member
Although, on the other hand if this thing is listening in, and based on everything known about these speakers, they do, why not tell them how overpriced the tickets are and how the parks have fallen so far from what they once were. I'm sure if all the speakers in the rooms resortwide pick up mass dissatisfaction, this pilot program will end. Blast it with old school Epcot attraction music and videos. Talk about how all this IP shoehorning in is awful and next time the family will just go to universal. If they want to know, lets tell them :) But more seriously, there should be the option of turning these things off (really off) or taking them out of the rooms for guests who don't want them.
 

AndyS2992

Well-Known Member
A local hotel to me supposedly tried something like and they were all stolen within a month lol Anyway, it always amuses me when people are such against these speakers when your phone, iPad, PC, your TV, are always listening, and watching if they have cameras. Any device with Siri, Alexa, Cortana or Google Assistant is always listening but no one has a problem with that, just with the speakers, which for the most part don’t have cameras.
 

kevlightyear

Well-Known Member
The fact is that any technology that you carry with you on a daily basis or have in your home has the possibility of being used by bad actors or to gather your data in a way you don't like. It is also a fact that there are benefits to be had from accepting that risk. Each person has to decide if that trade-off is worth it to them. Its fine to think its not worth it. It is not fine to act like people are dumb or misinformed if they do want to accept it.
The difference is that putting one of the devices in your pocket or keeping it in your home is a choice YOU make. You get to research which device, what company, how much you share. You are in control.

Checking into a hotel room where the hotel has made all of those decisions for you removes your agency, and limits your personal freedom. These devices should be opt-in, not opt-out.
 

bpadair32

Active Member
The difference is that putting one of the devices in your pocket or keeping it in your home is a choice YOU make. You get to research which device, what company, how much you share. You are in control.

Checking into a hotel room where the hotel has made all of those decisions for you removes your agency, and limits your personal freedom. These devices should be opt-in, not opt-out.
Your personal freedom? Please, that is ridiculous hyperbole. If it bothers you that much just unplug it and move on with your life.
 

DisAl

Well-Known Member
When the thing can get my wife to get ready faster then they will have something worthwhile.
Otherwise, can it tell me what time the 3:00 o'clock parade is? ;)
 

kevlightyear

Well-Known Member
Your personal freedom? Please, that is ridiculous hyperbole. If it bothers you that much just unplug it and move on with your life.
I absolutely would. But a LOT of people wouldn't even know it was there or what it was capable of, and it would be listening to them anyway, without their consent. That's where the problem lies. You really can't understand how people would be against this?
 

bigrigross

Well-Known Member
I absolutely would. But a LOT of people wouldn't even know it was there or what it was capable of, and it would be listening to them anyway, without their consent. That's where the problem lies. You really can't understand how people would be against this?
If people had a problem with this, then they would give up their smart phones, cars, and amazon wouldnt be selling their ever popular Fire TV. People are so jumpy the second "CONNECTED" is used for any device. So long as cameras are not being used and I am not being recorded 24/7 by it, I am all for it. Vizio and Samsung learned their lesson from that massive lawsuit for the always on audio recording. I do not think any other company wants to start that up again if they value their stock prices.
 

Obobru

Active Member
I always find people who go on about VPNs and not having their internet traffic logged are often doing something they shouldn't be and should be watched extra close around kids at Disney. If you are not doing something dodgy why would you care or even think someone was reviewing your mundane internet history or listening in on you, or maybe it's ego where people think they are more important than they are and like to think someone actually cares about their boring life.
 

Kamikaze

Well-Known Member
That seems like a better idea than the Apple product. I still think Google is even beating out Alexa, which would also be in front of the Apple product
No chance that Google Home is outselling Echo devices. Literally zero.

Edit: It appears Amazon has a 2:1 (100m to 50m) lead in devices sold as of the beginning of 2019. Much closer than I thought, to be honest.
 

Kamikaze

Well-Known Member
I always find people who go on about VPNs and not having their internet traffic logged are often doing something they shouldn't be and should be watched extra close around kids at Disney. If you are not doing something dodgy why would you care or even think someone was reviewing your mundane internet history or listening in on you, or maybe it's ego where people think they are more important than they are and like to think someone actually cares about their boring life.
I work in IT. This isn't always true. I have some people that are paranoid about being watched, some that want to do less than legal things, and some that just do it just to do it. And others that want to appear to come from a different area, say to watch MLB.tv of a local team which you can't do from the teams broadcast area. Which means if you don't have cable/TV, you can't watch your team even if you pay for MLB.tv. If you use a VPN and grab a server in the next state (or any other area) you can watch your team just fine. Theres also a client who is the father of an Oscar nominated director who doesn't want anything between him and his son to be unencrypted. So they both use an encrypted VPN.

While you're correct, people do use VPNs to hide doing illegal things like torrenting, and I might possibly have done so myself, you can't say thats the only use.
 

Kamikaze

Well-Known Member
These types of speakers are going to be very common place in homes, and I think the expectation will be that they will be available in hotel rooms. I think Disney is wise to test this out - privacy will of course be a big issue however. It should be easy enough to offer a way to opt out - either power off or remove from the room.
The Google Home devices only keep 1 second of listening when they are not active (by saying 'OK Google' or 'Hey Google'). That second is constantly rewritten. There is also a physical mic on/off switch on each device which will disable listening completely.

Echo devices work much the same way - constant 1 second recording which is rewritten - but the chances of a word sounding like 'Alexa' are a lot more common than the Google wake words (mostly because its two words). There are definitely cases where it records things you wouldn't want it to, but these are fringe cases and not a normal occurrence. Changing the Echo wake word (other options are Amazon, Echo, and Computer (for the ST:TNG fans)) will also cut down on the accidental activations since those words don't sound like many other words. Most Echo devices do not have a physical on/off mic switch, however.
 

jaxonp

Well-Known Member
Alexa/google-

Order me room service
what time does the magic kingdom open
What’s the current wait time for flights of passage
How do I get to the California grill
What is the weather tomorrow
What time is sunset
Wake me at 7am
Turn the coffee on at 6:50am
Turn off the tv
Change the temperature of the room to 70 degrees
Close the blinds
Dim the lights
 

bigrigross

Well-Known Member
I always find people who go on about VPNs and not having their internet traffic logged are often doing something they shouldn't be and should be watched extra close around kids at Disney. If you are not doing something dodgy why would you care or even think someone was reviewing your mundane internet history or listening in on you, or maybe it's ego where people think they are more important than they are and like to think someone actually cares about their boring life.
Clearly you are not tech savvy. I use a VPN to remote into my houses network to get into my PC, router, NAS, etc. basically it allows me to get in while protecting my data when on a public access point as I am on the road for work about 30% of the year. But sure, go ahead and generalize a group of people. I could say the same thing about a bunch of grown ups who are on a Disney forum. Wouldn’t want them around kids either but oh wait....
 
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