Some of them can be. Gotta RTFM unfortunately. At least some TVs permit turning off the always-listening feature; something else to look for in the manual.They say smart tv's record conversations. I can't verify that, but I've noticed the little pilot light on them still on when they're turned off and in a dark room. Are they in a stand-by mode?
Bolded/underlined is the key.Some of them can be. Gotta RTFM unfortunately. At least some TVs permit turning off the always-listening feature; something else to look for in the manual.
I'm running Sony TVs that are at least ten years old and still looking good enough that it's hard to make a case for new ones. However when the time comes I'll be making sure that replacements either don't have a listening feature or that it can be completely disabled. The feature can't add enough to my life to justify the risks.
Risks like others in new technology that people seem to not understand, because it's hard to believe that they just don't care about it.
For example, Amazon (same company, what a coincidence!) is already selling massive facial-recognition database access to police forces and commercial clients. The system offers a database of hundreds of millions of facial photos of people attached to profile information about them gathered from all over the web and collated in Amazon's systems.
Anyone subscribing to the system can submit a photograph - let's say it's a picture of you entering their store. The picture will be matched to other pictures of you (taken from Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, etc., etc. - anywhere else that you've allowed a photo of yourself to float on the internet) and the client will receive back whatever information the database has about you. Could be name, address, phone, etc., could be (if not already then likely in the future) a profile of your interests or things you like or often shop for, etc.
Here's a story about it from the Washington Post, which is owned by Amazon's Jeff Bezos so be aware of soft treatments in the article.
Amazon is selling facial recognition to law enforcement — for a fistful of dollars
I really don't consider myself a paranoid person, but all these things seem so obvious, which leaves me wondering why people aren't more concerned.My attitude changed when I found out (in the mid 80s) that digital PBX phonesets, like the one on everyone's office desk, could be used to bug you. The hookswitch did not interrupt the audio path or kill the microphone in the handset as it did in the old, analog '500' sets. If one thinks about 'why', well, it's pretty hard not to see conspiracies all over the place, and how bad this could be in the long run.
Now I'm suspicious of nearly everything that is offered to us to improve our lives or make them easier. Especially the products that are relatively cheap or free. Facebook? Yea, a lot more than just ad revenue going on there. Cellphones are another gaping hole that we can't do anything about, but have become essential in the 21st century (they can be used as bugs so easily, it is really just a legal issue for governments to regulate or exploit as they see fit). I'm not at all surprised that mics that are opened to the www (like those Alexa things) are going to be used against us - if not now, then eventually.
But people seem to, for the most part, not care about personal security. They willing expose themselves to all sorts of risks, even the ones they should be aware of. I guess just have to hope we are small potatoes and no nefarious groups would actually bother going after us? Because the tools are certainly there if they do want to.
You're dead wrong, again. Demand for hydro has been falling for years in Ontario (and likely elsewhere). Ontario routinely dumps electricity it doesn't need at below-cost prices to customers in the U.S.People whine about their electricity bills constantly, yet the number of "power vampires" (things that stay on and powered 24/7 so they can be operated via remotes) multiply and multiply. Yes, such devices are lower power, and not the same current draw as leaving a bunch of 100W incandescent bulbs on all day, but at a certain point all this "convenience" is why the demand for hydro, nuclear, solar,and wind power keeps going up and up.