Ssshhh! Alexa is listening!

Flashy

Well-known Member
Almost like they knew people played that game. Lets not forget the Ford Probe.
One of my friends is still reminded of the time, more than 20 years ago, when he said in all seriousness: “I wouldn’t say no if someone offered me a Probe.”
 

imightbewrong

Distinguished Member
Many, many years ago a buddy of mine got pulled in off the street to watch an advert for a 'new Ford' (the Probe, before it came out) - and give his opinion. He was hesitant but they offered him a Mars bar in payment so he went and watched it. After the video the first question was "Ok, what was the car called?" His answer "errr..... <shrug>". I bet the marketers were a bit sad about their video after this.
 

Lee

Moderator
I hope some of you aren't saying out loud what you are typing around Alexa because there will be some interesting adverts/emails coming your way.
 

Hixs

Distinguished Member
Not Alexa related, but similar - I posted on here the other day about getting a bottle of whiskey to make some Irish Coffees. So i bought a bottle off Amazon and it arrived Thursday. Now I'm seeing lots of whiskey ads on FB.

I know FB makes money from ads, and from knowing what people buy, still, it's 'odd'.
 

adam-burnley

Distinguished Member
Not Alexa related, but similar - I posted on here the other day about getting a bottle of whiskey to make some Irish Coffees. So i bought a bottle off Amazon and it arrived Thursday. Now I'm seeing lots of whiskey ads on FB.

I know FB makes money from ads, and from knowing what people buy, still, it's 'odd'.
If avforums did adverts...

Screenshot_20201017_001032.jpg
 

Hixs

Distinguished Member
Ah! I do allow ads on this site. The only one too! It's a useful place, so best they get a few pennies from me.
 

reevesy

Distinguished Member
I was watching one of those consumer programs on telly when they were taking about this... especially if you use it for phonecalls

Only use mine for music

Can't remember exactly where it is but if you go into your Amazon account you can request the data they have...gets sent to you a couple of days later

Think you can delete it too ?
..I did it out of curiosity
 
I would not allow a device like Alexa in my house. I even tape over the camera on my computer.

As to the ringing in your right ear - I have mild tinnitus at about 11 KHz in both ears. Once or twice a day I feel a slight pressure - always in the right ear - accompanied by a gradual increase in the volume of the tinnitus. It lasts about 10 or 20 seconds and then slowly decreases back to background level. I unscientifically attribute it to my time in the army 55 years ago when I shot the rifle right-handed so that the report was closer to my right ear.
 

keithwiggins

Well-known Member
I have an Echo Dot with in built clock on my bedside cabinet, it's a great device for setting alarms, and generally asking Alexa what the weather forecast is etc.

This morning, I was sat in bed having my first coffee of the day, and quite unexpectedly in my right ear, got a touch of 'whistling' and a blocking out of all other sound. It only lasted a few seconds, but was unusual enough to mention it to my wife. Now I didn't mention tinnitus, I just described the symptoms, and that it had cleared very quickly - my wife, a GP, didn't seem concerned in the slightest. And that's where we left it.

I open up my emails a few minutes later, and, having never seen an advert for this before, there was an email, offering solutions to tinnitus!

Call me paranoid, but I think it's awfully suspect that I mention my brief hearing issue one minute, and a few minutes later, a random email from a tinnitus clinic drops into my inbox!

Could be a total fluke - I mean, if Alexa were listening all the time, then my inbox should be flooded with adverts for battery operated marital toys, and penis enlargers - oh wait...... j/k :D ( or am I)? :blush:;)

Anyway, just be careful what you say around your Echos. Now, where did I put that tin foil?....
I Beleive they are always listening, its wether or not it bothers you, just started watching NeXt on kodi, if it doesnt bother you know, then neXt, gives a real possibility of potential down sides.
 

DPinBucks

Distinguished Member
In the interests of scientific endeavour, I went around all day yesterday saying things like "I'm thinking about buying a new camera", where Alexa can hear me.

So far, not a peep about cameras. All I'm getting are the usual random ads for stuff I bought last week.
 

Kelmscott

Active Member
Ford got a group together to brainstorm a name for their latest model.
Guess what they came up with?



Posted by Kelmscott - Systems yst. Like my new job title?
 

yclark

Member
Not Alexa related, but similar - I posted on here the other day about getting a bottle of whiskey to make some Irish Coffees. So i bought a bottle off Amazon and it arrived Thursday. Now I'm seeing lots of whiskey ads on FB.

I know FB makes money from ads, and from knowing what people buy, still, it's 'odd'.
If using FB through a pc or laptop FB Purity is a brilliant extension. You can block all ads and also block anything else that you don't like seeing that FB force on you. If you don't like the new version of FB it also lets you go back to the old version.
 

jeallen01

Active Member
TG, I won't let such "devices" into the house!

Very rarely use my Android phone, all but one of the laptops & tablets (haven't used mine for a long time and can't find it now!) have tape over the cameras and most have fairly strong ad/tracker blockers, the TV is a recent LG without a camera (don't know about the audio side!), the car's an old one with no internet connections - nowhere near perfect, but "I'm really trying" to avoid all that "intrusive listening".

Weak areas appear to be the audio side of the laptops and maybe the TV, and my wife's phone and tablet (she uses that a lot for FB Messenger and so on, and feels very isolated now we are in Tier 2 and so I won't do anything to those).
 

iamtheetube

Distinguished Member
My wife and I often talk about how our devices are listening and got the chance to put it to the test a few weeks ago when talking about getting suitable MTB clothing for our daughter.
I couldn't remember the name of a company I'd seen advertising so for a laugh I picked up my locked phone and said "kids mountain bike clothes. Kids mtb gear..."

Lo and behold later that day
630EF3E7-13DA-4E06-B07B-751054F91529.jpeg
 

imightbewrong

Distinguished Member
Still no one has topped mine, where I saw a spot of oil on the drive - I got out my phone and typed "how to" and Google's first autocomplete suggestion was "remove oil spot from drive". If it can read minds it's no wonder it can listen.
 

Tempest

Distinguished Member
I'm wondering if some of this, other than coincidence is down to the access/permissions certain apps have, and you have granted them on your phone.
I'm sure many of us who follow updates to the OS on phones have seen the recent improvements where you can select to stop mostly social media apps from having access to aspects of your device even when they are not running.

Perhaps an app like facebook was still able to gather some microphone input due to it running in the background?

I've never been able to cause ads to come up by simply talking, and deliberately repeating the name of a product whilst being near my phone, pc, tablets, cameras, smartspeakers.

I have a mate who's nuts about this.
He genuinely believes Google, Amazon, Apple actually employ people so sit there and listen to all the smart devices they have sold to spy on you 24 hours a day.
Can you even imagine the impracticality of something like that? It's bizarre to even think something like that is happening.
 

mjn

Distinguished Member
I have a mate who's nuts about this.
He genuinely believes Google, Amazon, Apple actually employ people so sit there and listen to all the smart devices they have sold to spy on you 24 hours a day.
Can you even imagine the impracticality of something like that? It's bizarre to even think something like that is happening.
Plenty Governments around the world do it.
 

imightbewrong

Distinguished Member
I'm wondering if some of this, other than coincidence is down to the access/permissions certain apps have, and you have granted them on your phone.
I'm sure many of us who follow updates to the OS on phones have seen the recent improvements where you can select to stop mostly social media apps from having access to aspects of your device even when they are not running.

Perhaps an app like facebook was still able to gather some microphone input due to it running in the background?

I've never been able to cause ads to come up by simply talking, and deliberately repeating the name of a product whilst being near my phone, pc, tablets, cameras, smartspeakers.

I have a mate who's nuts about this.
He genuinely believes Google, Amazon, Apple actually employ people so sit there and listen to all the smart devices they have sold to spy on you 24 hours a day.
Can you even imagine the impracticality of something like that? It's bizarre to even think something like that is happening.
It's human nature. We see hundreds or thousands of adverts a day without a second thought. If we see one we were talking about earlier in the day, it instantly springs to mind.
 

Doug the D

Member
Many, many years ago a buddy of mine got pulled in off the street to watch an advert for a 'new Ford' (the Probe, before it came out) - and give his opinion. He was hesitant but they offered him a Mars bar in payment so he went and watched it. After the video the first question was "Ok, what was the car called?" His answer "errr..... <shrug>". I bet the marketers were a bit sad about their video after this.

My mind read these two words the other way round, I had to re-read what you typed :rotfl:
 

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