• Hey, guest user. Hope you're enjoying NeoGAF! Have you considered registering for an account? Come join us and add your take to the daily discourse.

German federal commissioner for privacy protection: "Xbone is a surveillance device"

Bedlam

Member
Peter Schaar, federal commissioner for privacy protection in Germany, is concerned about MS putting a surveillance device under the guise of a toy into living rooms:

SPIEGEL ONLINE: 'Datenschützer: Schaar nennt Xbox One "Überwachungsgerät"'

So far, reactions to the Xbone in the German mainstream media have been very sceptical in general. The reader comments are usually overwhelmingly negative as well.

It seems MS has quite a few obstacles ahead of themselves in European countries. Consumer rights and privacy protection are huge issues over here and I fully expect MS to run into legal trouble when the Xbone hits the market.
 
 
I can see how people would be worried about this, having to be plugged in and it tracking the amount of people in your room and you, yourself.

Least of my personal concerns at the moment though. It'll be interesting to see if there are any country wide bans based on privacy going forward.
 

confuziz

Banned
As has been mentioned before, MS does't give a shit about Europe (and Japan). But yeah, this was expected. Other countries in the EU will follow.
 

Globox_82

Banned
meh who cares USa and Uk don't mind big brother in their homes. Since those two make 60%+ of the market, xbonita will be fine
 

McNum

Member
This is no surprise, really. The EU is unforgiving when it comes to surveillance and consumer rights. Germany in particular. The Xbone is heading into troubled waters over here.

It's going to be interesting to see what form the Xbone will have once it gets released here, I wouldn't be surprised if there will be a special European Edition of it, much like Windows had a special edition that didn't come with Windows Media Center due to anti-trust issues.
 
It seems MS has quite a few obstacles ahead of themselves in European countries. Consumer rights and privacy protection are huge issues over here and I fully expect MS to run into legal trouble when the Xbone hits the market.

Well, this could be interesting.
 

bitoriginal

Member
The fact that Kinect is required and needs to be plugged in really concerns me. I hope MS get sued. It should be a personal choice to put a camera on your tv, not mandatory.
 

Raide

Member
MS already pointed out you have plenty of options for turning things off, especially the camera. If people are still thinking "They might be lying and really its spying on you" have more issues to deal with than a new console launching.
 
I've said since the beginning that the Xbone isn't going to fly in the EU. Way too many concerns, from privacy right down to used game sales. Microsoft clearly doesn't give the remotest fuck.
 

DigitalOp

Banned
Its shocking to me just how many people write this off. IMO this is no small matter. This thing will be gathering data 24/7. Its not a paranoia scare, you really will be surveyed people for ad data.

Who knows what else they can see.

And just the fact that it exists means ANY COMPANY can access that data with the RIGHT CHECK.


You really think Uncle Sam won't be the least bit interested in taking a look in America's homes?


It is your choice, you don't have to buy an XBO at all.

And I sure as hell WONT
 

waypoetic

Banned
MS already pointed out you have plenty of options for turning things off, especially the camera. If people are still thinking "They might be lying and really its spying on you" have more issues to deal with than a new console launching.
Where can i read about that?
 

Gun Animal

Member
MS knows that Europe and Japan are both a lost cause for them. MS is making a console aimed at what was already their core demographic, which is what any game company should do in the first place, right?
 
I simply cannot believe MS would not check compliance with European law. It defies logic that such a massive company would make an investment of many hundreds of millions without checking whether it could be released in its second best market.

Sure, the US would always be its main market, but come on, Europe is a market of 500 million people. For growth in the Xbox brand Europe was surely Microsoft's best chance. Especially with the always connected strategy means developing nations would not be expected to deliver the growth.
 

Wiseblade

Member
As has been mentioned before, MS does't give a shit about Europe (and Japan). But yeah, this was expected. Other countries in the EU will follow.

meh who cares USa and Uk don't mind big brother in their homes. Since those two make 60%+ of the market, xbonita will be fine

Except that the rest opf Europe/PAL is a huge market worth fighting for and that an EU ruling against the Kinect could restrict the XBO's sale in the UK too. Better for Microsoft to play nice and make the Kinct less required while there's still time.
 

2MF

Member
And that's before we get to the used games issue which hasn't been clarified yet.

MS knows that Europe and Japan are both a lost cause for them. MS is making a console aimed at what was already their core demographic, which is what any game company should do in the first place, right?

I see what you did there, but it fails. Sure, EU is not as big as the US for Xbox, but it's still an extremely important market.
 

jimi_dini

Member
MS already pointed out you have plenty of options for turning things off, especially the camera. If people are still thinking "They might be lying and really its spying on you" have more issues to deal with than a new console launching.

Right, because Microsoft wouldn't lie. I mean, those voice commands were totally honest and real, right?
 

Bedlam

Member
You can turn the camera off.
It's not just about the camera. The fact that, in order for the voice-activation to function, the Kinect mic has to be in a constant stand-by state is a concern for many. What will also matter is how well MS will inform consumers about the implications of the Kinect functions, that they are active by default etc.
 
Out of interest, do he feel the same way about the front facing camera in the Galaxy S4? Wouldn't that also be considered a surveillance device considering it's always on?
 

Risette

A Good Citizen
I simply cannot believe MS would not check compliance with European law. It defies logic that such a massive company would make an investment of many hundreds of millions without checking whether it could be released in its second best market.

Sure, the US would always be its main market, but come on, Europe is a market of 500 million people. For growth in the Xbox brand Europe was surely Microsoft's best chance. Especially with the always connected strategy means developing nations would not be expected to deliver the growth.
This is the same Microsoft that couldn't provide coherent answers to any question regarding features/restrictions that any rational team would've seen coming, either.

It is becoming increasingly clear with every passing day that Microsoft actually has no idea what they're doing. They're not daring, visionary, or forward thinking -- they're throwing random shit at the wall without rhyme or reason in a state of complete idiocy.
 
MS knows that Europe and Japan are both a lost cause for them. MS is making a console aimed at what was already their core demographic, which is what any game company should do in the first place, right?

No. Growth and the maximization of profits is what any company should be aiming for. Currently, the Xbox One and Microsoft look like they are taking opposite measures to obtain this goal.
 
Out of interest, do he feel the same way about the front facing camera in the Galaxy S4? Wouldn't that also be considered a surveillance device considering it's always on?

It's probably more due to the fact one of the selling points of Kinect 2.0 is the amount of data it collects on you including facial reactions, heart rate and stuff.

Less to due with the camera and more the ability the technology has to collection information on it's users.
 
There's no happy ending for them when it comes to this. This is what happens when you tie yourself to a peripheral that has to be always on. Either it stays on and people get uncomfortable or they allow you to turn it completely off and it gimps all of the features they've been peddling. Bad news for them all around. That's the end game.
 
Top Bottom