The year is 2019 and I can’t buy a good majority of consumer technology because we lack privacy legislation and consumer protections. Example: it’s absurd that my TV came with spyware that can’t be turned off or avoided; I had to stop it from phoning home at the network level. It also came with an arbitration clause and a clause waiving the right to a class action lawsuit.

@retrohacker Simply reprogram all of the things. It's not… actually, it is pretty hard.

Also be aware that clauses waiving the right to a class action lawsuit are meaningless and unenforceable in some jurisdictions.

@wizzwizz4 I would love a future where consumer hardware is mostly fungible and easily flashable. I don't see that happening here, I strongly suspect they sell these TVs below manufacturing cost expecting to make money back w/ the spyware.

@retrohacker My parents didn't understand why I was annoyed at them when they bought a "Smart" TV. But then when I looked into it, it's pretty much impossible to get a
TV that doesn't connect to the internet these days. A TV should do one thing, and only that: be a display. If you want smart stuff, glue a raspberry pi to it or some other thing. Trying to do two things at once like a smart TV does is a recipe for disaster

@Matter @retrohacker is it possible to buy a "smart" TV then take its guts out and drive it with an off-the-shelf SoC?

@grainloom @retrohacker possible? Yes. But then again, it is possible to do many things, but probably not practical or reasonable :D. It probably depends on the device, some might have the display driver be decoupled from the computer part, which would make it easier to just neuter the computer part. Some might have both on the same board which would make it necessary to make or get (somehow) a display driver for it. Probably easier to just not connect it to any network and ignore the smart part

the worst is that people just don't understand the implications.
our organization needed a large display, and bought a smart tv (no other choice at a reasonable cost).

People keep on insisting to connect it via Ethernet, and when I ask why it's "because it can".
then explain what it "can do" then, and they accept but still seem to be annoyed somehow.
Seems like I'm missing some use case..
And these are somewhat technical people

@norwin I'm excited to see the "TV Landing Page" wars, it's going to be beautifully dystopian. Where HDMI inputs are considered hostile by the TV manufactures because they bypass the manufacturer's spyware.

the people I talked about mostly don't use HDMI already, but Chromecast or some similar solution.
but DRM is built into both, so whatever :D:

Why connect it to the network in the first place? From an end user perspective, no embedded device is trustworthy these days.

@retrohacker under most legislation, it's impossible to contract oneself out of a human or civil right. If your legislation has a right to privacy, then you would still be able to instigate a class-action lawsuit for violation of privacy

TV's have been a really bad idea for awhile. If you expose anyone you care about to msm programming, you are damaging them.
I go with a great stand alone monitor, and feed it as i see fit.

@mydogisahusky I use them as a screen for HDMI inputs that go into a RaspberryPi. It's hard to find a 55' 4K HDMI monitor for $350.

@retrohacker "Vizeo exec: we'd have to charge a premium on 'dumb' TVs to make up for the money we'll lose by not spying on you"

@Mycroft this is exactly it. I couldn't believe I got a 55' 4k TV for $350, and then I plugged it in and realized why. I'm fairly confident this TV is sold below manufacturing cost with the expectation that the spyware will make it profitable.

@retrohacker not even inner party members can turn off the telescreen #1984

@retrohacker we live in the Star Trek future we were promised and all it cost us was our privacy.

@attilakinali @retrohacker I as going to say. Some folks think that because governments have coercive power, everything they do it bad. But I think the GDPR is proof that even neoliberal states can do good things, if pushed hard enough. It's one piece of really good legislation that solves so many problems.

In Europe, a lot of people are irritated because GDPR goes too far in some areas. E.g. if you are a concert photographer, you are not allowed to take pictures without prior and written consent of everyone present. Or if you were running the website of a yearly recurring event, including photos of past events, you are forced to take down all pictures for which you cannot acquire of everyone depicted.

@attilakinali @retrohacker it's my understanding that you need only provide clearly posted notices that photos will be taken and old photos are fine as long as you did that. Which is best practice anyway. There's a lot of confusion about the law, alas and people being overly cautious.

It's my second favourite EU law. (My first favourite is the one about allergens and my third favourite is the one about mobile phone roaming.)

These notices are not enough anymore. Explicit written agreements are required. Also, you need to provide them retroactively for pictures taken in the past.

@celesteh @retrohacker
BTW: as with all European directives, GDPR are implemented slightly different in all countries. So, depending on where you are, you have to do things differently.

@attilakinali @retrohacker This appears to not actually be true:

Also, event organisers have a legitimate interest in documenting their event, which means the old notices should be good enough.

There's a lot of anti-GDPR fud and I don't know if it's coming fro ad-tech companies who will be forced to finally behave, but I have my suspicions,

At least in Germany it's because the law has been formulated in such a general and ambiguous way, one cannot be sure how it really applies.

@attilakinali @retrohacker Germany had a law like that dating back to 1908 when Bismark was papped on his death bed. The law being weird/bad for photographers stretches back more than a century in Germany

dont buy TVs anymore. Just separately purchase a monitor, a tuner and a small amp for audio out. You will end up with better sound, and a toolchain that only does what you need.

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