WARNING: Phone Apps for TV a Bad Idea
When everyone, including competitors across the entire supply chain (production, distribution, outlets) simultaneously start doing exactly the same thing… I get suspicious. So it is with TV viewing apps, and the suspicion is aimed at 5G Network villains.
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Just as suddenly, it dawned on me…
Recently, it came to my attention that virtually every TV network and major ISP service (i.e., Comcast, Time Warner, Cox) is aggressively pushing their apps for watching shows and generally promoting binge viewing. Actually, even TV programming sources without their own channel, and some local TV stations are doing the same. If it’s on television, there is likely one or more Apps which someone wants you to use to watch them on your phone.
While general TV media apps have been around for a while, such specific media apps seem to be a relatively new phenomenon, and I wondered why the heavy promotion seemed to be ‘turned on’ in a flood — all at once, and across the board among various competitors, and across all platforms, including game systems. I don’t like the answer(s), and I suspect you won’t, either. Especially if you are an activist, whistleblower, or anyone targeted by someone else for any reason (TIs take note). Like a lot of technology, weaponization is not that hard, and abuse is almost always a certainty.
Understand, as a privacy and security consultant, I am not a fan in general of ANY App, even most of those which come with your phone. There are two reasons. 1) the more technology you use, the less privacy and security you have. That is exemplified or manifest in several ways, perhaps the most important being… 2) virtually all Apps of any sophistication with wifi interactivity are relatively easy to hack to become a gateway to control of your phone… perhaps to access to your personal files, even to the point in some cases of being able to manipulate the camera and microphone in or out of your use… and/or for tracking your phone’s physical location by several means. In fact, there are even certain advanced methods which can be employed which can impact your brain’s EEG to effect mood changes and your level of alertness; Political Control Technology some people call ‘mind control.’
With my own phone, I NEVER download ANY app, and I only use standard apps* when I must, trying to limit myself to the compass and flashlight. I do zero online work with it, and I leave the phone off when I do not need it, turning it on to check for messages, expected calls of importance, and making calls. Sure, I’ll use the camera, but only when I don’t care if anyone is able to track exactly when and where the snap was taken (or I use special editing software to strip out the encoded data). When not turned on, it is in a foil pouch, because some phones still communicate without a battery, much like RFID tracking chips, drawing the energy from RF signals in the air, and/or other methods, such as slow-discharge capacitors. Learn more about the whys and wherefores of such strategy, from this previous post. But one reason why must also be discussed in more detail, in the next section.
* There is only one app I have downloaded and use which I suggest everyone should have: RSOE EDIS, an alert system for local, regional, national, and international disasters of any kind; natural, terrorism, industrial accidents, biological/pathogen outbreaks, etc. It could save your life. I also have it on my computer, and it is the first thing I see when accessing either the computer or the phone.
Every App usually requires a user agreement which is so full of legalese and so massive in text as to deter actually bothering to read it, on the Sheep-like assumption the Wolves didn’t write it, and it is ‘standard’ in nature. The only thing standard about such agreements, is that they abrogate your rights and expectation of privacy, doing so in terms which fail to so inform by misdirection within all that legalese. It obscures the truth through terms for which the legal definition and application in the real World means something quite different than you think.
They don’t really want you to read the document, or course, as evidenced by the fact that it is IMPOSSIBLE to read it before you download. NO ONE publishes their user agreement online, and NO ONE will respond to a request to provide a copy in advance of download. And good luck trying to read all that text usefully on your tiny phone screen, when you are anxious to fire up the app and see its pretty animated graphics do their thing. They count on all of this to take place. Here’s proof that only one half of one percent of us actually read the agreements before clicking yes… along with reasons why that’s foolish.
Note: Here is an example of a typical response to a request for a copy of the User Agreement for a TV App, this one from HGTV Customer Service: “We don’t have staff available to respond to every email, but all feedback will be shared with the appropriate teams for review and consideration. Please visit our online Knowledge Base for programing, website, sweepstakes, and other information.” Knowledge Base is merely another term for FAQ, and no FAQ ever addresses the question. Worse, they might refer you to a User’s Forum… where people who can’t get answers are supposed to provide answers to people who can’t get answers.
They all read roughly the same in almost every user agreement, regardless of type. They tell you they do not associate your name, address, or account information with any information collected. That won’t matter, because you are easily identified by your device Identification in terms of Web connectivity (the IP address, for instance, and information about your modem and router, or similar information for your phone). So, if anyone wants to reach out directly to you, to check up on you, market to you, hack you, or anything else, they can do it without knowing your name, address, or account data… if they know how, or are authorized.
So one question is, just who is authorized, beyond the firm offering the App?
The general term is ‘partners.’ You are a commodity as much as a customer, and your information is essentially traded between interested players like any other commodity. The list of trading partners can be extensive, especially if their partnering includes rights to access the partner’s partners (not uncommon for firms like Facebook, Google, Cloud involved service companies, and ISP providers like Comcast). In any event, you can expect the answer to be hundreds, if not thousands, of ‘partners’, except that they don’t usually tell you who they are, save an example or two. The list for HGTV, for instance, which I was able to eventually discover (no thanks to Customer Service) is a block of text large enough to roll up and the swat the flies off of a Bandito’s dead body.
The worst of it is not the marketing which will come your way, and the fact that everywhere you go on the Web, ads will be tailored to what is learned about you through the App (and all other online activity), or that you can end up seeing ads for the same product/service hundreds of times a day for weeks. No. THAT activity, which IS tracked by the app (asserted as ‘necessary to provide the benefits claimed for the app’), is what renders you a commodity. No, the real threat is this: should any one of the partners suffer a hack of some sort which accesses their data base, that can be trouble, for you… especially if the purpose is to find end users of the app to target with a secondary hack attack through the app, itself.
Second threat: synchronous and heavy promotion
This is somewhat analytical, and though based on facts, perhaps rightly seen as speculative; the reader should decide for themselves just how much weight the presentation merits toward acceptance as valid concerns. The presentation must start with some technical information having to do with phone network designs and bandwidth capabilities.
The current 4G network was introduced primarily to improve bandwidth due to greater network demands both in terms of the number of users acquiring phones, and the introduction of smart phones able to stream high-data volume video content. More and more people were converting to smart phones, and streaming. I recall binge watching Invader Zim on a phone not long after 4G became available. Nowdays, the phones are faster and have larger screens, and therefore, users demand higher resolution video streaming (4K resolution is going to be increasingly common), all of which requires several orders of magnitude more bandwidth. Almost all phones, today, are smart, and almost all users, stream. 4G is rapidly being outpaced by demand, and in some markets, it is already suffering an inability to deliver full bandwidth to all users at all times.
Ergo: there is a 5G Network in our future ( but is it a ! or a ?).
That trend is not going to change, and in fact, will soon grow dramatically in the near future. Apple Computer, I’m expecting, will soon introduce a very expensive product which is slated to replace their entire product line, save perhaps the watch, all replaced by a single phone-like product with full portable computing capability. It will serve as your desktop or laptop computer, wirelessly communicating with your Smart Tv or special Mac-like displays (including older iMacs/laptops and monitors), or by adapters to any other brand equivalents, and with wireless keyboards/mice… and your smart appliances. It will also plug into a commercial jet’s seat-back monitor, or VR headsets.
It will serve as your modem/router, and your hard drive. It will rely on massive internal memory as well as the Cloud, and Cloud-based software applications accessed through apps on the device through subscriptions or licenses. Other manufacturers will follow suit, if not beating Apple to the punch, ending the Desktop and laptop computer as we know them, today. It will be a huge bandwidth hog, as result, more than quadrupling the wifi consumption per user, and doing so at more times during the day; simultaneous functionality demanding it. Then there is the political question, like it, or not.
Under Obama, the whole thing with ‘Net Neutrality’ came about, in which we Sheeple, having such a short memory for sound bites, have forgotten the truth… NN was a bad thing for users, and a good thing for Big Data corporations like Comcast. Obstructed by activists, the FCC under Obama acted unilaterally to establish NN, and in addition, set out to cancel all local TV station broadcast licenses, forcing their signals to go to ISP providers for distribution. More correctly stated… forcing YOU to go to your ISP to watch your local news and programming, again dramatically increasing bandwidth demands. Now that Trump has cancelled it, of course, the Left is telling us the opposite of reality, claiming Big Data benefits with the death of NN, and the user suffers, and we risk the invasion of privacy. The truth about NN, regardless of which argument you believe, is that it was intended to cater to 5G in ways useful to big Data, more than end users.
Which brings us back to the synchronous app promotions…
All of this, along with the expected demand created by all those TV watching apps suddenly being pushed system-wide, will literally force conversion to the new 5G Network, as more and more streaming demand in full HD (and soon, 4K) takes place. 5G is set to replace 4G, starting… well… now. But there is a problem with 5G; a lot of people, groups, experts and even officials are very afraid of it, seeing it as both a threat to privacy and both physical and mental health, and rightly so.
It has even been likened to a mind control device, especially in combined use with Smart Meters and Smart Appliances, all of which are also intended to go 5G, many already capable of it. In fact, 5G is promoting something called ‘Smart Cities,’ which is the Big Brother of Smartdom components. That, and the fact that 5G ‘cells’ will exist every few hundred feet on every street, is only one of the reasons it is feared as a mind control tool. I will tell you as avowed expert in the topic, that very little of the fears being expressed are entirely out of the question, from the standpoint of technical possibility. Proof, of course, won’t likely exist until its quite too late to object.
Now we finally have the answer to the original question this post is based upon; Why synchronous offerings of TV apps? My deduced answer is, therefore, that the sudden synchronous push by all major ISPs and TV networks to offer apps is intended to bog down the 4G network to the point that we will demand 5G proceed even in the face of the many lawsuits and various government and NGO investigations over safety and other concerns. Not just lawsuits and investigations, but also, outright bans. Use the links to learn more about these very valid concerns.
The forced push strategy I describe will undoubtedly work; Americans at large are well dumbed-down to the point of buying whatever the latest widget is, being offered, doing so without careful scrutiny or consideration beyond the hype of benefits amid images of gleaming hardware, usually involving some form of entertaining commercials promoting ‘feelings and emotion’ over logic and fact. I’m again using the current Left v. Right paradigm; feel good imagination trumps practical reality. Since the phone network, the phones, the app makers, the ISPs, and the TV networks, as well as the bulk of all Internet firms of any importance are themselves all part of one giant media complex, THEY will only tell us what they want us to believe (what to believe), and will seek to minimize or even suppress critical viewpoints such as mine.
Google, for instance, since Obama, and up until just a few weeks ago when Congress began looking at Web censorship by liberal-minded firms, would not let you find my blog posts. Used to be that you need only type in my personal name or trade name (proparanoid), and a few words from the title or topical theme of any of my blogs, and it would pop up in the first few listings on the first page. Since Obama, their censorship model is so efficient, that you could not even find it typing the full title of the post. In fact, it would show you posts of people who quoted from it, before it let you find the actual post, even ten pages down. Understand, there are over 12,000,000 pages which quote or cite my work, and yet, they don’t want you to find my original material, any more, despite that popularity? Political censorship.
I should complain? look at what the Left did to Alex Jones!
On the other hand, if you used Duck Duck Go, it always came up on top. They were/are not controlled by the Left, or the Right. Google is a search engine, but google (lower case), is a verb. Inquiring minds will want to google, but won’t use Google, to do it. I’m advising that they also avoid using apps of any sort, when they do so, but especially, to avoid TV apps. Cheat them out of the demand for 5G, and watch TV on your television, where you can see everything more clearly, and enjoy high quality audio.
Because one thing is for sure: 5G is going to make any social control by whomever is in power vastly easier than it is, today… and today, it is so easy that even a single liberal-minded company willing to be underhanded, like Google, can manipulate the thoughts and actions of hundreds of millions, and do it covertly.