Privacy Archives


Big Data vs. NSA PRISM Snooping: Is There a Difference?

Tweet Question: What’s the difference between marketing-related data mining of consumer behaviors (either online or in the “real world”) and the recent revelations about NSA domestic surveillance?  My guess is that it would be very challenging for you to distinguish the two. In the case of NSA PRISM, the agency is accused of capturing huge […]

Facebook Gift Card Could Be Huge Hit

Tweet Facebook previously introduced a way to send actual goods to people (via credit card): Facebook Gifts. However it has now gone further by debuting a plastic gift card that can be used (and reused) at multiple stores. It appears to be leveraging Discover’s network. However the card will work at a range of retail […]

Instagram’s New Privacy Policy: Will the Service Be Around in a Year?

Tweet As you’ve no doubt read by now Instagram changed its privacy policy to pave the way for advertising, including using user-generated photographs in ads. This is driven in part by its new Facebook ownership and the success of Sponsored Stories on the Facebook side of things. Facebook paid nearly $1 billion for Instagram because […]

Opt Out Not Really What Consumers Want

Tweet I was talking to Neustar (TargusInfo) this morning about privacy, display advertising and its AdAdvisor data product. We were discussing how best to balance consumer privacy with greater ad relevance. During the course of the conversation I wound up visiting the uber-opt-out site set up by the ad networks for “self regulatory” purposes: Out […]

CityGrid Lays Off 15% of Workforce, Moves to CPA Pricing Model

Tweet I spoke this morning with CityGrid CEO (and former Seamless founder) Jason Finger. He told me that CityGrid would be cutting about 15% of its staff. Most of those reductions would be in personnel who helped develop the new network infrastructure that the company uses. More significantly Finger said that CityGrid (and presumably the […]

StreetFight Poll Shows People Willing to Trade Location for 50% Off Deals

Tweet Confirming other data in the market, an online poll conducted by StreetFight found just over 50% of consumers would exchange location for access to substantial discounts and deals. According to the results (n=1,000), StreetFight “found that 50.7 percent would consent to a smartphone app that followed their every move if they were to receive half off […]

WhitePages.com’s iOS Apps Now Allow You to ‘Find Everything Nearby’

Tweet WhitePages.com has upgraded its iOS apps for iPhone and iPad and made them more user friendly and comprehensive. The tag line now is “find everything nearby,” which means residences, people and local stores. The new and improved app maintains existing features and adds a range of new capabilities. Among them you can now search […]

Solving the Problem of Mobile Location: More Consumer Education than Technology

Tweet Yesterday at SXSW Geoloqi CEO Amber Case gave the keynote address about the potential for location on mobile devices. I wasn’t present (still on a plane). According to reports, she reiterated a lot of things about location and its potential that are pretty well known among LBS geeks. Her company, which just announced a […]

Forget SXSW, Real People Don’t Want You to Know Where They Are

Tweet Remember the term “lifecasting”? It was in relatively widespread use a few years ago (2007-2009). The term itself seemed to be a metaphor for a cultural shift in attitudes toward privacy. Facebook told us the same thing: traditional privacy was giving way to more open attitudes about sharing personal information, especially among younger people. […]

Survey: People Don’t Want to Be Tracked Even If It Means More Relevant Ads

Tweet A new US consumer survey (n=2,253) out from the Pew Internet Project this morning shows pretty clearly that people don’t want to be tracked and targeted even if that means more “relevant” advertising or search results.  The report, which is focused on search, shows that people like and have generally favorable views of search […]