So how’s that GDPR working out for ya?

One Year Into GDPR, Most Apps Still Harvest Data Without Permission

Protected Media is regularly approached by companies offering to sell data or social graphs. Greiner always makes a point of asking the salesperson how the data they’re peddling was obtained and what’s in it. “Invariably, they can never answer me,” Greiner said, “which leaves me to believe that they’re very rarely asked where they get the data from.”

See also: Websites not available in the European Union after GDPR—that’s a long list.

Ambient Surveillance

Idle Words > Talks > Privacy Rights and Data Collection in a Digital Economy (Senate hearing) (Testimony given by Maciej Ceglowski, creator of Pinboard.)

A characteristic of this new world of ambient surveillance is that we cannot opt out of it, any more than we might opt out of automobile culture by refusing to drive. However sincere our commitment to walking, the world around us would still be a world built for cars. We would still have to contend with roads, traffic jams, air pollution, and run the risk of being hit by a bus.

Similarly, while it is possible in principle to throw one’s laptop into the sea and renounce all technology, it is no longer be possible to opt out of a surveillance society.

The Dark Side of Amazon

Household Object: Amazon Package

While the Nike swoosh embodies confidence and cool, the simple curve of the Amazon logo recalls an obsequious service smile. The soft edges of the grin, and its winking right corner, are meant to put you at ease. No matter how unfair the working conditions, how miserable the workforce: a smile was here. Did I ever see a human smile at Amazon? I can’t recall a single instance. A security guard laughed once, while she was walking among a line of seasonal workers. She was carrying a large bolt cutter and saying, “One day I’m gonna smash one of you.”

Welcome To The Prude Internet: No More Sex Talk Allowed

However, with last year’s passing of FOSTA beginning to eat away at CDA 230, we’re actually moving back to a world described in the original CDA — where plenty of “sexual” content is being barred, in part out of a fear of getting sued under FOSTA. Take for example, the writer Violet Blue, who we’ve linked to many times in the past. Last week, she revealed that Amazon has now cut off her Associates’ account, which she had been using to support herself for years.

Most likely, what the supporters of FOSTA wanted all along.