Facebook Applies for Patent to Figure Out Who You Live With

Discussion in 'HardForum Tech News' started by AlphaAtlas, Nov 19, 2018.

  1. AlphaAtlas

    AlphaAtlas [H]ard|Gawd Staff Member

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    Facebook apparently applied for a patent titled "Predicting Household Demographics Based on Image Data" in May 2017, and that patent just went public this month. True to its name, the patent suggests that Facebook intends to extrapolate relationships based on pictures posted to a user's page. The application also mentions an extension to Instagram photos, as well as "photos posted by other users that may include members of the user's household." While it's not clear if Facebook ever implemented anything mentioned in the patent, given Facebook's recent scandals and the crumbling wall between Instagram and their new owner, the timing of this release is inconvenient for Facebook, to say the least.

    Abstract: An online system predicts household features of a user, e.g., household size and demographic composition, based on image data of the user, e.g., profile photos, photos posted by the user and photos posted by other users socially connected with the user, and textual data in the user's profile that suggests relationships among individuals shown in the image data of the user. The online system applies one or more models trained using deep learning techniques to generate the predictions. For example, a trained image analysis model identifies each individual depicted in the photos of the user; a trained text analysis model derive household member relationship information from the user's profile data and tags associated with the photos. The online system uses the predictions to build more information about the user and his/her household in the online system, and provide improved and targeted content delivery to the user and the user's household.
     
  2. the_servicer

    the_servicer [H]ard|Gawd

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    This isn't weird or anything. Facebook deserves a lot of trust and money.
     
  3. nysmo

    nysmo Gawd

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    I'm starting to feel less and less like an anti-social media hipster and more and more glad I deleted my Facebook account last year.
     
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  4. Zepher

    Zepher [H]ipster Replacement

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    they can easily extrapolate that type of data from IP addresses and geo location tags in photos.
     
  5. The Mad Atheist

    The Mad Atheist Gawd

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    Thank god I don't use Dogbook for my private life.
     
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  6. katanaD

    katanaD [H]ard|Gawd

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    Im not sure how this is news. It is known they are doing just that already.
     
  7. nutzo

    nutzo [H]ardness Supreme

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    One more reason I'm glad I never had a Facebook account, and never will.
     
  8. BloodyIron

    BloodyIron 2[H]4U

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    This is a beach of privacy to those who never even signed any Facebook documents...
     
  9. HVAC

    HVAC n00b

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    Just this last summer as I was laying out on the breach someone came up and took my picture, beaching my privacy.
     
  10. BloodyIron

    BloodyIron 2[H]4U

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    On the beach is a public space. In the home is not. You have a right to privacy in the home and known associations too.

     
  11. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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    I can't tell if that was an intentional pun or not.

    That said, there is no expectation of privacy in a public place. The supreme court has repeatedly ruled on this. If you are somewhere visible from a public place, it is perfectly legal to take your picture whether or not you like it. If you are confrontational with anyone doing so, YOU are the one who will likely wind up in trouble with the law. You could politely ask them to stop, but they don't have to.

    I don't have a problem with this traditionally, but traditionally there was a limit to the danger of this policy, as you actually had to have a person with a camera collecting data. These days where all this stuff can be automatically harvested and analyzed with AI, I think we are facing a level of surveillance our founding fathers would have had a very big issue with. This is why strict originalist interpretations of the constitution aren't necessarily always that great.

    Now, as far as the "in your home" or any other private place scenario goes, you would need to give permission for this to be legal. Traditionally this implied telling a guy with a camera it was OK for him to take pictures. These days it could be buried in an EULA that you need to accept in order to use that fancy new device you've been drooling over. This would be perfectly legal, but still problematic.

    Based on this, here are two scenarios in which modern technology have taken privacy issues that used to be very straight forward, and turned them on their head, and a perfect example of why we need new regulation.
     
  12. Krenum

    Krenum [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Now, if Facebook could just figure out a way to delete themselves from existence we'd all be sitting pretty.
     
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