This phenomenon of companies just outright turning our webcams on without our permission seems to be relatively new. At around the beginning of this year, Microsoft was doing this practically everyday, but they appear to have scaled back on this intrusive activity as of late; that, or they just figured out a way to get around the anti-virus protection. One can only speculate what these massive tech corporations are doing behind the scenes.
Unfortunately for us, several companies are now following in Microsoft’s footsteps, and if you have external anti-virus protection installed on your laptop, you might have noticed that many websites are attempting to turn on your webcam now, not just Microsoft. One of these websites you probably know very well: Youtube.
Before the internet was completely taken over by the big tech corporations, there would’ve been a vicious public backlash if something like this were to happen. The internet would’ve been flooded with memes, videos, and massive threads with thousands of comments, and the mainstream media might have actually been forced to cover the story. Turning our webcams on? People would have said, “No Way”. You can listen to me, you can put me in debt, you can lie to me, and you can steal from me, but you are not watching me in my house.
Boy have things ever changed
Today, anything that challenges the established narrative is quickly blocked by the algos or moderators, and things have gotten so bad that Facebook is even shadowbanning people for using the wrong keywords. Nothing is organic anymore, and everything you see online is completely controlled.
Average people struggle to produce viral content because the MSM has forced their way to the top of every major social media feed, and Facebook has even gone so far as to start banning private messages. Yes, even your private conversations are not immune to the over bearing scrutiny of the big tech corporations, and as you will see below, they aren’t even try to hide it anymore.
According to safetydetectives.com, an estimated one-fourth of PCs are not protected with antivirus software, and when you take into account the total U.S. population, this means 10’s of million of people are being watched (and potentially listened to) without their knowledge.
They aren’t just watching us, though. Bloomberg recently reported that Amazon employees are listening to their customers with Alexa:
“The team comprises a mix of contractors and full-time Amazon employees who work in outposts from Boston to Costa Rica, India and Romania, according to the people, who signed nondisclosure agreements barring them from speaking publicly about the program. They work nine hours a day, with each reviewer parsing as many as 1,000 audio clips per shift, according to two workers based at Amazon’s Bucharest office, which takes up the top three floors of the Globalworth building in the Romanian capital’s up-and-coming Pipera district. The modern facility stands out amid the crumbling infrastructure and bears no exterior sign advertising Amazon’s presence”.Bloomberg: Amazon Workers Are Listening to What You Tell Alexa
They signed non-disclosure agreements?
Is this really happening? Has the Orwellian spy grid gotten so bad that they can literally listen to us in the comfort of our own homes, yet when we have questions as to why this is happening, they just don’t have to tell us?
It gets worse. At the beginning of this year, a 14 year old boy accidentally discovered that with a simple phone call, he could automatically turn on his friends speaker phone without needing him to answer.
How long will it be before the victims of this egregious invasion of privacy have no recourse whatsoever? They already block everything from going viral — even private messages — so how long will it be before these tech companies can just instantly bury one of these stories with some kind of Orwellian algorithm that can sense and deboost anything that poses a threat to their hegemony? Are we already there?
First of all, let’s just be honest with ourselves: it wasn’t a bug. Almost immediately before this “bug” incident, Apple reported spending $3.9 billion on R&D in the 4th quarter of 2018, so it seems highly unlikely that they didn’t have redundancies in place to detect a problem like this. Sure, you might be able to make the “bug” argument if this was just an isolated incident, but with all the other problems we have been experiencing, it should be pretty hard for you to stomach this “bug” theory at this point.
The news media sure had no problem regurgitated this story. Remember, average people are not allowed in the news feed anymore, and the big tech companies (and their executives) can instantly block whoever they want with the use of machine learning algorithms, and keep them blocked. The only way to get around this is to use several devices and VPN’s, but nobody has the time for that.
Just take a look at the top search results for FaceTime bug
One can only imagine the conversations that went on in the board room that day:
“We will call it bug, just feed that story to the media, and hopefully they will buy it. If they don’t, well, we can just pay them off, and if that doesn’t work, we’ll just block them”.
Just recently, there was another report of a big tech company paying contractors to transcribe our conversations without our consent. This time it was Facebook
From Bloomberg, by Sarah Frier
“Facebook Inc. has been paying hundreds of outside contractors to transcribe clips of audio from users of its services, according to people with knowledge of the work.
The work has rattled the contract employees, who are not told where the audio was recorded or how it was obtained — only to transcribe it, said the people, who requested anonymity for fear of losing their jobs. They’re hearing Facebook users’ conversations, sometimes with vulgar content, but do not know why Facebook needs them transcribed, the people said.
On Wednesday, the Irish Data Protection Commission, which takes the lead in overseeing Facebook in Europe, said it was examining the activity for possible violations of the EU’s strict privacy rules”. Read more
Then there was another. This time it was everybody’s trusted Nest Security System; the very thing you would expect to prevent these types of situations.
“Sexual expletives”; “I’m going to kidnap your baby”; “I’m in your baby’s room?” WTF
Is this just the way it is now? Are we always going to have to worry about some sick freak lurking behind every one of our devices, and for the rest of our lives? How is there not massive protests on every street corner right now? They are literally turning our webcams on without our consent, and hiring independent contractors to spy on us, yet when we ask why they are doing this, they just don’t answer us; and when we try to speak out, they just censor us.
They can even ban congressmen now. Yes, congressman.
Twitter allows the most hardcore sadomasochistic porn one can imagine on their platform, but an elected official posting a video of people threatening him outside of house — banned. The porn is so bad that wordpress won’t even allow the link to be posted in this article. Talk about hypocrisy.
What is the solution, you ask? There’s always a solution, isn’t there? We live in the Western World, so we can just vote the people responsible for this out of office….. right?
Common everybody, you and me both know that this is not going to work.
Unfortunately, no, there is no longer a solution at this point. It’s gone too far. Say bye bye, we are not in Kansas anymore, and we left a long time ago. It’s back to the old days, where the media has full control over everything we see, hear, and believe; only now it’s just worse, because now they can watch and listen to everything we say, do, and probably think, and if we don’t like it, they can just say, “don’t use the internet”, “get an analogue phone”; “these are private companies and they can do whatever they want”.
Facebook, Microsoft, Google, Apple, and Amazon; companies with a combined market cap exceeding the GDP of every single country in the world other than China, Japan and United States, with a virtual monopoly over all online activity; they are just private companies, and if you don’t like what they are doing, go somewhere else.
If you want to use a smartphone; if you want to use the internet; if you want to watch a video or talk to your friends and family, you’re just gonna have to accept the fact that your speech, your ideas, and even your deepest most guarded secrets can be used against you, and if you try to speak out against this; click, banned. Oh, and by the way, we’ve been watching you through your webcam for years, so you better hope we don’t find anything naughty that you might have been up to in the privacy of your home when we decide to go through all that footage. This is our Brave New World