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 Post subject: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 12:07 am 
Klamath
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I'm not sure if this is correct section for this thread but the Xbox One is hardware, right?

At any rate, I just wanted to bring something up that I really think should be discussed. The Xbox One has the capability to be quite a nasty little spying device, not only for Microsoft but for hackers, government officials, and perhaps even terrorist types that manage to hack the device. Now sure, the terrorist part is stretching it a bit, but the possibility is still there. Now I'm not saying it should be outlawed as I suppose people have a right to be spied on if they want, although then I guess it isn't "being spied on" so much as being monitored, but I digress. I do, however, think it should be absolutely mandatory by law that Microsoft put on it's Xbox One packaging in a clear and visible manner (on the front) that the Kinect sensor MUST be connected to the Xbox One for it to function, and that Kinect will be "On and monitoring" by default (if it indeed is on and monitoring by default). It would also be nice if they detailed on the packaging, once again in a clear and visible manner, that the Xbox One requires a mandatory 24 hour internet check-in to be able to play games on it. There are millions of potential buyers, even now, that don't know all the anti-consumer measures Microsoft has implemented on the Xbox One.

And as you're probably aware, there were hackers that would actually turn on people's PC web cams and spy on them from afar on their computers, so is it really so far fetched something like that could happen on the Xbox One?


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 7:21 am 
Smithfield
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What if you cover the camera and microphone with tape?


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 7:56 am 
Klamath
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Well, you are supposed to be able to turn the camera and microphone completely off, but I think it's on by default when you first connect it to the Xbox. Even when it is off it still must be connected I think. When it is turned on it constantly 'listens' for someone to say "Xbox on" to turn the Xbox One on. I suppose you could put tape on the camera lens and microphone just in case someone hacks it and turns it on but the whole thing just seems silly to me. Basically they are forcing you to pay the $100 extra for it, since it comes with the Xbox One, and making it mandatory to have it connected and forcing you to rig it so it isn't invading your privacy.

I have been a loyal Xbox owner since the original Xbox and have been a satisfied customer throughout the years and have always defended Microsoft, but these invasive, restrictive, and at the very least inconvenient policies show Microsoft has zero trust in it's customers and is perhaps just plain getting greedy. I suppose I can give Sony a shot and get a PS4 when it launches but apparently word is that they are leaving it up to publishers/developers to decide if their respective games use DRM, so it might not be much better on that front with the PS4. At least I don't have to have a monitoring device connected to the PS4, and they are allowing Indies to self-publish so that's a good thing. I'm sure it will have some great games and it is 50% more powerful and $100 less so it just seems like a no-brainer at this point. And if the day comes that these tyrannical, invasive, untrustworthy policies are practiced by Sony and Nintendo as well then I'm going to have to just stick with my PC. Windows 8 is still nice. It doesn't require me to have a webcam watching me at all times... yet. :P


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 8:05 am 
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I'm not usually a member of the tinfoil hat brigade, but I do think that concern over this trend has some merit.
I personally can't think of any real need for a camera or a microphone on a gaming console - sorry, family entertainment device - unless the owner wants them for multiplayer gaming.
There is always the potential for hacking and abuse of any device connected to the internet. I'm not a gamer and I don't own any consoles. But even I am looking at M$'s Xbox One hype and its DRM and restrictions and always-connected nature and think it's far too big-brother-ish and restrictive for my tastes.
It will be interesting to watch the upcoming PS4 vs Xbox One sales figures.. if they can be believed, that is.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 8:34 am 
Klamath
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OvenMaster wrote:
I'm not usually a member of the tinfoil hat brigade, but I do think that concern over this trend has some merit.
I personally can't think of any real need for a camera or a microphone on a gaming console - sorry, family entertainment device - unless the owner wants them for multiplayer gaming.
There is always the potential for hacking and abuse of any device connected to the internet. I'm not a gamer and I don't own any consoles. But even I am looking at M$'s Xbox One hype and its DRM and restrictions and always-connected nature and think it's far too big-brother-ish and restrictive for my tastes.
It will be interesting to watch the upcoming PS4 vs Xbox One sales figures.. if they can be believed, that is.


Ya I know what you mean. Throughout my life I've met a couple.. well.. almost militant anti-government, conspiracy type people that stockpiled guns and were well prepared for the "Y2K disaster". I've never believed we were in any real danger of "The Mark of the Beast" Government enforced "Chips in the body", definitely not any time soon and most likely not by America's Governenment. However, it just stands to reason that in this instance you must ask yourself "Why?". Why do I need a kinect connected to my Xbox if I don't want to use it? I consider myself a hardcore gamer and have no interest in playing casual motion control games. I get it.. the logical answer is that they want to saturate the Xbox user base with the device so it will have a high adoption rate and thus have more companies develop games for it and thereby giving the Xbox One a unique aspect that will attract more buyers and generate more cash. But I think just the opposite is going to happen. They already seemed to have turned away an enormous amount of potential Xbox One purchasers that would be willing to spend the $500 on a system and buy $60 games. I saw no problem with having kinect as an optional peripheral for those that wanted to purchase it separately and use it with compatible games on the 360, and lots of us have had brand loyalty for Microsoft for a long time. Where is the customer loyalty from Microsoft? Oh well, big business is big business I suppose, but we the customers helped them create a video game empire and it's a shame that they so easily took a stance to exploit their customers.

I'm sure going to miss Halo.. lol.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 8:56 am 
Klamath
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And really the daily internet "check-in" with Microsoft's servers that is required to play even single player games is equally as off-putting as the always-connected kinect. Then you have the no used game sales fiasco. That is going to drive many of these "Mom & Pop" stores out of business and of course Microsoft most likely has even less concern for them than they do their loyal customers. I'm not even trying to sway people away from buying an Xbox One with this thread, but I think these concerns should be voiced and I do think an informative (or "warning") label should be visible on the Xbox One packaging about the Kinect being always connected and what risks that poses with an 'alway connected' computing device.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 9:58 pm 
Smithfield
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Well here's something to think about. You know that microphone thing? If you own a cellphone you should be afraid, because allegedly someone can turn on the microphone and listen in.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 11:05 pm 
Klamath
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LatiosXT wrote:
Well here's something to think about. You know that microphone thing? If you own a cellphone you should be afraid, because allegedly someone can turn on the microphone and listen in.


Sure, and your phones could be tapped, etc. But ever since the invention of phone they have been "always on", so to speak, waiting for a call to come in. People are quite aware of this and I'd wager most people are aware it is possible to "tap" a phone so the entire conversation can be heard by a third party. Everyone has seen this happen in movies and television. This is very different than video game consoles, however. for the first 20 years of consoles' existence they couldn't even be connected to any form of communication line, and only in the last 10-15 years have they been connected to the internet and even then it was optional. Many people will be unaware that the Xbox One will require a daily internet check-in, as well as require a monitoring device to be connected at all times as no console has gone to these extremes before. I just think people should be properly informed. Microsoft WILL be collecting data about users. They have said you have control over what data is sent to Microsoft, but I doubt in some people's tech savvy in properly configuring their next gen consoles. And what does Microsoft do with this information? I have several negative ideas about what they could do with it but I just think people should be properly informed and educated about the situation.

I would gladly still buy an Xbox One if it doesn't pan out as Microsoft hopes and they drop these ridiculous DRM requirements, as they have tons of great games coming out for it. But until they do I, and many others, I believe, will be just fine playing on the 50% more powerful and $100 less expensive Playstation 4.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2013 7:50 am 
Smithfield
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I wouldn't have a problem with where they were going with the digital age and all that (after all, we all love Steam, but you can't sell your games or give them to someone else, period). But it has asinine requirements, like limitations that EA or Ubisoft has imposed on its DRM on PC games. At least with Steam, I have unlimited reinstalls and an offline mode... third party DRM notwithstanding.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2013 8:55 am 
Klamath
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I agree, I do like Steam. Man, I hope it's a loooonnnngggggggg time before the Steam servers go permanently offline. I have so many games on there. But I don't mind it because for one they constantly run fantastic sales, 75%+ off usually. Now, true, it took until Steam had a substantial library and customer base to be able to offer those sales but I'm not so sure Microsoft would offer discounts like that even if the Xbox One became wildly popular.

Another thing is that I like having a backup gaming system if my internet goes down. Steam has pretty much taken top spot as my gaming platform of choice. If there is a PC/Xbox multi-platform title I usually choose Steam to get it on. However, I do have plenty of Xbox games and I enjoy having the freedom to play my Xbox games if I can't connect to Steam. Now I know Microsoft wants to be top dog and be everyone's "platform of choice" but it's just not that way for me. The Xbox One is just not the right product for me. I will really enjoy my PS4 I think as I have never really given Sony's Playstation a fair shake as I have always been a Sega and then Microsoft guy. I know there are dozens of gems on PS3 and more coming out on PS4 though. I hope they get the streaming backwards compatibility feature working on the PS4.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2013 11:29 pm 
Klamath
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So apparently Microsoft has now removed the requirement of having to have a Kinect connected to the Xbox One for the Xbox to function. That is great news. I am now not so sure-fire determined to get a PS4. Just about everything I disliked about the Xbox One has been reversed by Microsoft (No used games, Internet Check-In, Kinect, etc.). I like the overall launch line up for Xbox One better than PS4. I used to be a Killer Instinct fan when I was younger and would like to have the new version. Forza 5 will most likely be a great game and Sunset Overdrive looks promising. The only thing
really holding me back is that it is $100 more for less powerful hardware and you are forced to purchase the Kinect (which of course contributes to it being $100 more.) If they can lower the price by offering a Kinectless SKU or even keep the Kinect and still lower it (I know they'd take a major loss of cash on each unit that way though) then I would probably opt for the Xbox One. I'm glad to see they reversed their controversial and anti-consumer requirements and policies and the decision for me, and many others perhaps, on which system to get has become much more difficult. So what do you guys think? If you're going to get a Console this year which one is it going to be? Or even if you're not going to get one, which one would you purchase if you were?


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2013 11:40 pm 
Smithfield
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I'm still sticking to the PlayStation 4 for several reasons.
  • The PlayStation lineup historically has a better variety when it comes to console exclusives, especially from genres I enjoy.
  • If it's going to be like the 7th generation, if I cant find it on PS4 but on XB1, chances are it'll get a PC release anyway.
  • I never liked how Microsoft handles their customers for the 360. On the surface, it looks like they're great. But on the other hand, if they could make a quick buck or two, they would do it. i.e., they're always finding ways to force people to sign up for Xbox Live Gold.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2013 11:56 pm 
Klamath
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Hi Latios. Ya, all the restrictions they were planning on putting on the Xbox One until they saw the pre-order numbers really leaves a bad taste for me, but I am willing to forgive and forget since they have, regardless of the reason, changed those restrictions. I have never been really too interested in Sony's exclusives. The Uncharted series, Journey, Echochrome, and now The Last of Us do interest me, however, and I was planning on enjoying those through the possible backwards-compatible streaming option the PS4 might have. I'm going to have to wait until after gamescom and probably a month or two after the release of both systems to really decide on which one is for me. I know what you mean about the Xbox games going to PC.. that is also something else I have considered in my decision. I'm just at "wait and see" status right now.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2013 12:18 pm 
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don't forget that Microsoft was one of the first to sign up with the NSA to install their secret software and share everything they know about you with the government.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2013 3:26 pm 
Smithfield
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Regarding PlayStation exclusives, I don't look at just what Sony's first/second party developers made, I look at what third party developers have also made.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2013 3:47 pm 
Klamath
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g.m.waters (red ranger3) wrote:
don't forget that Microsoft was one of the first to sign up with the NSA to install their secret software and share everything they know about you with the government.


I had glossed over something like that on a website or two but never really read up on it. That's definitely not a good thing, IMO, if they did that.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2013 3:53 pm 
Klamath
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LatiosXT wrote:
Regarding PlayStation exclusives, I don't look at just what Sony's first/second party developers made, I look at what third party developers have also made.


Give me some examples. I'm still going Playstation at this point. I asked around yesterday and everyone I know is in the PS4 camp and I want to be able to game with my friends. I, however, would gladly lone wolf it and go XB1 if things continue to get better and better for it (i.e. even more great games announced & Kinectless & less expensive SKU). I'd like to know what games you enjoyed on PS3 that were exclusives though.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2013 4:31 pm 
Smithfield
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Mostly games from Japanese companies. For instance, I'm enjoying Tales of Xillia right now.


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 Post subject: Re: Xbox One and Privacy.
PostPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2013 4:49 pm 
Klamath
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LatiosXT wrote:
Mostly games from Japanese companies. For instance, I'm enjoying Tales of Xillia right now.


Cool. My first RPG was Phantasy Star in the 80's on the Sega Master System. Still my favorite game of all time, well, perhaps that and Sierra's peerless Quest For Glory series. I've since kind of moved away from Japanese RPGs over the years, though, finding I prefer Western RPGs like Knights of the Old Republic and Dragon Age. I would definitely give any highly acclaimed JRPG PS4 games a try though, like perhaps Final Fantasy XV. But I do hope all the Western RPGs on XB1 come to PS4 too, however. :D


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