We all might have heard this, "Big Tech companies used tracking system to collect users information", "Google, Facebook, Twitter tracks you for monitory purposes", and whole lot....
Recently, I also watched the film from NETFLIX named "The Social Dliemma" It just blowed my mind. It won't be erased easily.
Even before this I encounter this tracking issue while using my phone. I would definitely want to share this with you.
I have been using social media for very long. Nearly from 2009, as its been more than a decade now. With Instagram come into market I have been using it and nearly stopped using Facebook. I stick to it since then. Every thing was fine till now.
I used to share stories, photos and videos. Also never checked with permissions I allowed to these apps. I allowed app to use my microphone, media, camera, location, contacts, etc. I never really cared about it.
Once I was talking to my friend on phone call and with on going discussion he mentioned about the new internet connectivity offered from BSNL(Telecom Company from India) Actually it got mentioned more than twice. It was cool conversation till then. And I slept after that.
Next morning, as usual I opened up Instagram and was scrolling through my Instagram feeds. And I observed that BSNL Ads appear not once but whole lot of time that day.
I felt it suspicious. As I never searched for it on internet nor did I searched it on Instagram or any other platform. But suddenly these ads started appearing with just reference in phone call.
There I realised microphone permission that I allowed to Instagram. But how can this app listen to my phone conversation? How do they listed to any of things even though I am not currently using that app? How do these apps monitor me?
To find answers to all these questions I started to play a game. I uninstall the application and started using web version instead. Guess what from that Instagram failed to show me any relevant ads.
And soon after that I started using this app with DuckDuckGo Android App.(Even though its not sponsored) It just keeps me safe from tracking.
I was the person who allowed Instagram to listed to my microphone when needed. But I also assume that it will be required while going live, recording videos and while using Instagram group calls. Instagram never told me it uses your microphone to listen to your conversation and use it for monitory purposes. Or I never though Instagram will do this.
People must be aware of these things. They must be solely aware how ads are shown and how these are changing there lives. But this is most hard thing to do as lot of people tends to ignore this things. (with my experience even though I am Software Engineer)
Definitely law makers should regulate these blind spots along with how data should be used for monitory purposed. As these data is used without peoples concerns. For good of people and the society.
People allowed these apps to use Hardware of devices with some purpose. And these companies are betraying those purposes for there own profits. It clear betrayal of people's trust. With more and more smart home devices and more such systems, this might increase eventually.
I talked with couple of people and they observed same issue. I work in software field and know how things worked. But people I talked with they don't. I think with time these Companies must also change their ways to monetise their platform. As this method was "OK" decade before.
With this monetising policy changes they also change attention problem or social media addiction problem in place. Which I would like to cover in next post.
Note: It's not my only experience. You might meet one on your own! Leave comments for more clarification or more information. I would be happy to help you!