COMMENT: Ray-Ban Facebook Sunnies A Direct Threat To Privacy
Ray Ban could regret the day they teamed up with questionable social media Company Facebook, in an effort to take what is an essential item, sunglasses, and tried to turn them into tech glasses that are a massive threat to peoples privacy.
The glasses, called Ray-Ban Stories, are now available for $449 they allow users to capture images and video and upload them to Facebook servers and their social media accounts, via an app called Facebook View.
Besides two 5-megapixel cameras, the glasses have three microphones and built-in speakers, so they can respond to voice commands and also be used for calls.
The big question is whether they are Ray Ban glasses that lack selfie appeal or are they Facebook glasses that are diametrically opposed to privacy as both a principle and a right.
All the big consumer electronics retailers JB Hi Fi, The Good Guys and Harvey Norman, are not selling the new Ray Ban specs as many of them are still struggling to sell the Bose Frames Alto Audio Sunglasses, that consumers appear to have shunned despite the Bose offering being a simple combination of glasses and audio, with no camera.
We all know that Facebook don’t give a stuff about privacy, all they want is information that they can on sell to questionable traders who really don’t care where the information came from.
Pictures taken with a pair of Ray Ban glasses that a person was surreptitiously wearing in a coffee shop, or that perv walking along a beach shooting video of girls in their bikini’s, how about them being the ideal accessory for the local paedophile stalking play areas for young children.
Facebook realise that it’s really easy to film people without alerting those around you to what is going on.
Facebook anticipated a privacy backlash to these sunnies and got five “third-party” privacy groups involved as consultants, and if you guessed that four of them were funded by Facebook to come up with the excuses needed to try and justify these glasses you were right.
Trying to argue, that these glasses are okay was described by the Wall Street Journal as being like prosecuting a case that alcohol is great for “enhancing concentration”.
Joanna Stern writing in the WSJ said “Look, did I feel creepy recording my mother and my aunt without them knowing? Or my barista? Or a random couple at the coffee shop? Or my Uber driver?
James Bond would have been proud of these glasses but how about the reputation of Ray Ban.
Can you imagine if someone gets caught out surreptitiously recording in a public place and the wrong person takes exception to being recorded especially if they know all about these Ray Ban glasses and how much information they can capture.
Lets’ face it Facebook is already known for trying to manipulate the political debate and are known to censor comment they don’t agree with, how about dirt files from data sitting on their servers that have been captured using a pair of Ray Ban sunglasses.
Users will be able to share content on Facebook and other Facebook-owned platforms, including Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger, as well as non-Facebook apps such as Twitter, TikTok and SnapChat.
Recent claims have been made that Facebook’s privacy breaches extend to WhatsApp.
That was the fear behind the data backlash earlier this year, and this new warning that the big social media network is reading encrypted WhatsApp messages is “undermining privacy protections for its 2 billion users.” claims Forbes magazine.
Forbes went on to claim that there is an inherent and awkward sensitivity across WhatsApp’s user base, that the world’s largest secure messenger is owned by the world’s most avaricious data harvester.
That’s why there was such a fierce backlash when WhatsApp ill-advisedly insisted users accept new terms of service, designed to facilitate tighter integration with Facebook, seemingly opening the door to more data sharing. And that’s why any suggestion Facebook is compromising WhatsApp security hits extremely hard.
Now the social media giant has a new data capture tool in their arsenal, Ray Ban sunglasses and their Italian owners Luxottica Group appear to be quite okay getting into bed with an organisation that prosecutes private information.
Luxottica Group is an Italian eyewear conglomerate and the world’s largest company in the eyewear industry.
Their best-known brands are Costa, Ray-Ban, Persol, Oliver Peoples and Oakley.
Luxottica also makes sunglasses and prescription frames for designer brands such as Chanel, Prada, Giorgio Armani, Burberry, Versace, Dolce and Gabbana, Michael Kors, Coach, Miu Miu and Tory Burch who recently teamed up with Samsung.
In January 2017, Luxottica announced a merger with Essilor. Today the combined entity commands more than one quarter of global value sales of eyewear.
Can you image the cross sharing of information that is now going on between Facebook and Essilor Luxottica as they now like to be called?
On one side you have a $100 billion dollar eyewear Company and on the other side a $1.64 trillion-dollar social media Company that appears to not give a stuff about privacy.