"Smart" sex toy company sued for tracking users’ habits

Strangely, it conservatives who claim to want government out of our personal lives who think that government belongs in women’s vaginas…


Honey, I caught Squirtle! You can put your Diglett away.


It pixelates your genitals if you are Japanese.


Are CDMA and GSM firewalls a thing? If they aren’t yet, they should be.


It’s anonymous to everyone but Peter Perv in IT and his web-ring…until the time when (not if) the company’s third party data warehousing service is hacked, at which point it’s anonymous to anyone without an internet connection. Doesn’t bullshit corporate security doublespeak just give you warm fuzzies*?

*disclaimer, section 83, ¶32: exactly how many fuzzies it gives you and at what temperature can be purchased as a package with thousands of client fuzzy metrics which we’ve “anonymized” by placing associated emails and other personal information in an unexcrypted .txt file anyone can un-hide in file explorer. Blackmail? Spam? Dirty tricks? We’re your one-stop shopping for criminally negligent security practices protected by eighteen layers of shell corporations farmed out to a PO box service in Bumfuck, Idaho incorporated as an LLC under an assumed identity.

Funny. I’m really sick of the lack of availability of non-“smart” devices because greedy fuckers have found ways to monetize the intimate personal lives of their customers without meaningful consent by burying their intention to use them as unpaid labor in the arcane legalese of a EULA longer than the Encyclopedia Britannica.


If your phone is rooted, then yes, but I don’t think that most firewalls will work on a non-rooted phone.

Well, I guess that’s how the term has evolved courtesy of self-serving manufacturers, sort of like how the word “home” has evolved courtesy of real estate agents to mean an empty or soon-to-be empty structure built as living space. When I think of “smart device” I would prefer it to mean “does things I want it to automatically or via the internet or by my instructions,” not “surreptitiously monitoring me and monetizing my activities.”


Hear hear! My next car is going to be a used car. Pardon me, “previously-owned?”


No. Smart phones are called smart phones because they are able to handle more kinds of applications and have a user interface that allows the device to act like a personal computer that you fit in your pocket. The difference between smart phones and feature phones has more to do with the user interface than the Internet connectivity, because a smart phone is STILL a smart phone, even when you can only get 2G connectivity or no connectivity at all.

Also, any responsible developer of applications that deal with private information knows that you should inform users about what data you collect, what you use that data for, and whenever possible allow people to OPT IN to data collection rather than having to opt out, or worse, being forced to give personal data to use the tool. Your sexual behavior is pretty private data. Not making their data collection policies BOLDLY CLEAR and allowing people to opt in to properly anonymized data collection is a sign of very lazy development and/or very crappy business practices.


I’m deeply tempted to add this story to the basic list of links in the Geeks Without Bounds accelerator curriculum as a case study in why protecting data is so important. I’m torn, though, because we work with some folks who might be scandalized by a case study based on a sex toy. On the other hand, it sure does knock the personal privacy issue home.

There is no excuse for gathering non-anonymized data about people’s usage of a sex toy, and the idea that they are doing this without allowing people to opt-in/opt-out is pretty awful. Trust is important in sex and in networked applications.


That sounds painful.


I do need something to take the edge(s) off.


“Mostly anonymized” comes from the same family as “partly pregnant”

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It’ll keep running, trying to update, until the battery is dead.

That’s a clear sign the user’s wants/needs are secondary to the manufacturer’s


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