Verizon Wireless' Solution To Tracking Fears: A Warning Sticker You'll Ignore

from the but-we're-doing-something! dept

With the new questions being raised about how much tracking data is being recorded (and potentially sent to others) from your mobile phone, Verizon Wireless has come up with a solution that allows it to wipe its hands of the problem: warning labels. Yes, the ever-popular liability minimizing trick of affixing a warning label has made its way into this debate:
I'm sure that will settle everyone's concerns.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. icon
    Fzzr (profile), Apr 29th, 2011 @ 5:04pm

    Verbal confirmation

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. icon
    Fzzr (profile), Apr 29th, 2011 @ 5:07pm

    Verbal confirmation


    How about require that a salesman verbally confirm that you understand those things before selling it to you? Of course then you get into "I don't remember agreeing to that!" territory verbally, which is is even harder to confirm... hmm...

    Nope, I guess the only way to make these things safe and fair to consumers is a transparent Opt-In.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. icon
    deathsbedbug (profile), Apr 29th, 2011 @ 6:30pm

    Verbal Confirmation....really?

    I mean really guys...if people aren't willing to read up a little on that $400 phone they are buying, it shouldn't be the company's responsibility to verbally make sure they understand.

    I agree it needs to be more prominent than the tag being displayed, and definitely in the manual or in the setup of the phone. Agree to it, or the phone doesn't work. But how many people read what they are agreeing to? They could be agreeing to give away their firstborn child and still click 'I have read and accept these terms'.

    You can't idiot proof everything, the world just builds a better idiot.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. icon
    Jon B. (profile), Apr 29th, 2011 @ 7:17pm

    Would you feel better if it read like this?


    Verizon is a cellular service company. That means we have to have a general idea where you are. How else do you think you make phone calls?

    Also, that GPS thingy that makes the maps so useful? Well, of course, it knows where you are, too. And if you're dumb enough to download apps that ask permission to access your GPS and then transmit that data to someone else, don't start bitching to us about it later. Just so you know.

    Also, coffee is hot. That really has nothing to do with this phone, but if you found this note to be helpful, you probably shouldn't drink your coffee too fast.



    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 29th, 2011 @ 8:27pm

    Is the small, squarish projection near the top left corner where they affix the adhesive?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. icon
    Jon B. (profile), Apr 29th, 2011 @ 8:31pm


    I imagine it's a tab that will go behind the battery door. You'll have to see the message to insert the battery the first time.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. icon
    The eejit (profile), Apr 29th, 2011 @ 11:10pm

    Re: Re:

    I just yank those bastards out. I know what my phone does, each app tells me. That's why I switched my GPS off.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. icon
    G Thompson (profile), Apr 30th, 2011 @ 2:27am

    This Warn You

    I think the opening Warning text in “The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: The Black Dossier”, written by Alan Moore says what I think here

    WARNING: Docs after in oldspeak. Untruth, make-ups only. Make-ups make THOUGHTCRIME. Careful. Supervisor rank or not to read. This read warn you. THOUGHTCRIME in docs after. SEXCRIME in docs after. Careful. If self excited, report. If other excited, report. Everything report. Withhold accurate report is INFOCRIME. THis warn you. Are you authorised, if no stop read now! Make report! We know. Careful. Any resemblance, living or dead, is ungood. Make report. If fail make report, is INFOCRIME. Make report. If report made on failing to make report, this paradox. Paradox is LOGICRIME. Do not do anything. Do not fail to do anything. This warn you. Why you nervous? Was it you? We know. IMPORTANT: Do not read next sentence. This sentence for official inspect only. Now look. Now don’t. Now look. Now don’t. Careful. Everything not banned compulsory. Everything not compulsory banned. Views expressed within not necessarily those of publishers, editors, writers, characters.

    You did it. We know. This warn you.

    [for a printable version click here]

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9. icon
    Christopher (profile), Apr 30th, 2011 @ 3:16am

    Re: This Warn You

    This Engrish from Communist China or something?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10. icon
    Christopher (profile), Apr 30th, 2011 @ 5:55am

    Re: Verbal confirmation

    Easy solution to that: a form that they have to sign saying that the salesman told you these things!

    Really, I don't understand why we have these things TURNED ON BY DEFAULT in the phones anyway. Just doesn't make sense.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11. identicon
    Wolfy, Apr 30th, 2011 @ 7:41am

    Or, we could start trying to breed for intelligence for a change...

    Oh, wait corporate and religious "authorities" wouldn't want that.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12. icon
    Derek Kerton (profile), Apr 30th, 2011 @ 9:35am

    Re: Re: Verbal confirmation

    " I don't understand why we have these things TURNED ON BY DEFAULT"

    The government requires it.

    How's that for irony?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13. icon
    The eejit (profile), Apr 30th, 2011 @ 10:52am

    Re: Re: This Warn You

    Nope, that's the actual text. IT's soemthing to do with pre-hynotic suggestion, if I recall correctly.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14. identicon
    Gene Cavanaugh, Apr 30th, 2011 @ 12:33pm


    After a long string of real winners, TWO losers in a row!

    "I'm sure that will settle everyone's concerns."

    So, doing nothing is better? That's even superior to "yes, dear" for dumb remarks!

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15. identicon
    abc gum, May 1st, 2011 @ 6:44am

    As always - buyer beware

    and ... just because you disable a function, does not mean they are not tracking you

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16. icon
    ComputerAddict (profile), May 2nd, 2011 @ 6:28am

    Re: Re: Verbal confirmation

    Simple, It makes some really useful apps work.

    Google tracks where android phones are to see where phones are clustered on roadways. This way they can deduce where traffic jams are and tell their other customers to avoid that area. With an Opt in there wouldn't be as much data, and hence the service would suffer. Or to be able to re-use your last GPS coordinate in order to speed up the next one.

    Why Apple feels it needs a years+ worth of data... Well as scientists know more data is better. But really it was probably just some quick code that never got checked, they said only keep 2MB as they felt that was a small value of data( I mean thats less than one MP3! ). As it turns out txt is really small, and apparently a year's worth of location data fit inside that 2MB.

    Good ideas, Poorly Executed.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17. identicon
    Chris Brand, May 2nd, 2011 @ 12:03pm

    Can it really determine my location ?

    Why do they call out "its (and your) [...] location" ?

    Can it really tell where I am ? Is this some new feature so that if I leave it at home and somebody calls, it can tell them where to find me ? Or if I leave it on the bus it can tell some passing stranger where to go to return it to me ?

    I can just hear this "Hello, this is Bob's phone. He left me on the dresser this morning when he went to work, so you could try his work phone. But not right now, because he just went to the washroom. I expect he'll be back at his desk in 10 minutes or so".

    Truly amazing what they can do with technology these days...

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18. identicon
    Digger, Aug 24th, 2011 @ 8:54am

    Re: Verbal Confirmation....really?

    No, what they need to do is keep that data isolated, usable only by apps that the user agrees to allow access to it, then not allow it to be transmitted anywhere, including the cellular provider. So your little how do I get there app can use it, the feds and or your what eateries are close by cannot.
    Configure the API so that certain cells or sources of data cannot be transmitted, copied, buffered anywhere..

    Not that difficult.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19. identicon
    Digger, Aug 24th, 2011 @ 8:57am


    So you're saying that Idiocracy was really a prophetic vision of what's to come?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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