Qantas Is Monitoring Your Social-Media Posts From Its Lounges

Discussion in 'Qantas Airways | Frequent Flyer' started by From NYC, Mar 18, 2014.  |  Print Topic

  1. From NYC
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  2. MSYgirl

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    I don't mind this so much when they are clear they are only searching and tagging information people are posting publicly anyway:

    Later in the article when it discusses Google Glass, while creepy to some, it would avoid having to explain who you are, produce a boarding pass, FF card, etc. It's instant recognition by their staff, and I hope this would provide improved efficiency among the airline/lounge staff.
     
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  3. LETTERBOY
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    Why would people post stuff on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc., if they don't want people to see it? :rolleyes::confused:
     
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  4. Globaliser
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    I agree; but it's amazing how many people evidently believe that you can have private conversations on those platforms.

    Much better to work on the basis that anything posted on them is published to the entire world, whatever privacy setting you may or may not have selected.
     
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  5. From NYC
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    However, the article goes on to note that Qantas sees all, whether related to the airline or not. You are trusting that some employee is not going to spread a non-Qantas-related post. Is a private message also corralled?

    At the very least, they should be letting people know this is going on, no? Put a sign up and that’s fair warning.
     
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  6. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    I'm not sure I understand what's going on... this is a known feature available on many commercial social media software and platforms. Even without specialized software, you can look for social check-ins near you, or you can search for specific locations -- the "owner" of the venue (in this case a Qantas) can monitor check-ins in realtime to any of their locations and receive an alert when someone checks in.

    This happens to me all the time now that I've started to pick up Foursquare more. You check in at the Four Seasons in DC -- either the restaurant or the hotel itself -- and you get a greeting from whomever is monitoring the social media account thanking you for the business. Same thing happened to me at the Alexandra resort in Providenciales of all places.

    It's actually kind of cool to see that a business owner is "engaged" to that extent, and that in the event that you need something you can reach out, or they even go as far as repost pictures that you've uploaded yourself of the venue.

    I certainly don't mind this sort of "intrusion" when it comes to customer service, or even extended from lounges to hotels. Imagine you're checking in and the people behind the front desk know who you are, your elite status, all the details of your registration and whether your room is ready or not, before you even get a word out.
     
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  7. bigx0

    bigx0 Gold Member

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    It doesn't appear Qantas etc. are doing anything nefarious -- they appear to be using facilities designed for exactly what they're doing. If people don't want to be tracked they can choose to not "check-in" with Facebook etc. and can turn off Bluetooth beacons. Or for that matter, not post in a public forum to begin with and not save their social media information into their devices. In this case the companies have the info because we give it to them (perhaps via agreeing to Facebook's, Apple's or Google's terms), not by them inspecting our internet packets and stealing it.

    Of course, there is much potential for abuse and personally, I'm rather careful about giving info away. It might mean I miss out on the chance to get a half priced coffee because I keep my beacon turned off but that's, at least for now, still my choice.
     
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  8. LETTERBOY
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    So what? Once you post something on social media, pretty much everyone has the ability to see it if they look for it. That's what social media is about, isn't it?

    If you trust the airline with your credit card number, I think you can trust them to not intentionally misuse social media.

    No they shouldn't. What should they say? That they're using social media for the one of the purposes it's meant for?

    Warning of what? That people may see things you post on Twitter, Facebook, etc.

    Agreed, and that's the principle I operate on when it comes to using Twitter (the only form of social media I use). If I put something on Twitter, I assume the whole world can see it. If I don't want the whole world to see it, I won't tweet it.
     
  9. From NYC
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    Yes, and Target also had people’s credit cards and look how that worked out, along with so many other “reliable” companies. If they were just scouting public sites for posts related to them, fine. Instead, like the NSA, they are scarfing up all your online activity. That’s different. But if you think it‘s okay for them to record everything you use the web for in their lounges and not to inform you of that, then we’ll just disagree.

    I don’t fly them, have never been in one of their lounges, and will be sure not to use their internet should I ever find myself in one.
     
  10. Globaliser
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    I see absolutely nothing in the report to suggest that this is what Qantas is doing. I don't know where you've got that idea from.

    This paragraph suggests the very opposite, with Qantas capturing posts from people who are posting via channels that don't have them directly connected to the Internet (eg posting via phones):-
     
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  11. Globaliser
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    Well, then, welcome to the Qantas board. Nice of you to drop by.
     
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  12. From NYC
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    “In any case, a recent demonstration of the technology that Qantas conducted for The New York Times revealed various content that users might not normally want to share with their airline. One post bemoaned a previous night’s overindulgence; another critiqued the appearance of a group of fellow passengers, accompanied by an unflattering photo.

    “It is a little disconcerting to me that Qantas could be monitoring anybody’s Twitter stream when it doesn’t pertain to the airline,” Mr. Harteveldt, the analyst, said. “There is a challenge here for any business to understand where does the involvement and engagement begin and where does it end.”“

    ““Using technology to position itself as a forward-thinking airline can have a positive impact on preference” among fliers, said Henry H. Harteveldt, a travel industry analyst in San Francisco for Hudson Crossing, a consulting firm. “But there is a very fine line between cool and creepy.”“

    It’s been a pleasure.
     
  13. Globaliser
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    Neither of those involves the airline monitoring the Internet traffic within the lounge. The user may not be using the lounge Internet to send the post, anyway.

    What the airline is doing is monitoring the posts being published by Facebook and Twitter etc after they've been sent by the user to them.

    So this falls within this sentence of yours:-
     
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  14. LETTERBOY
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    Once you post something on Twitter, it's public, isn't it? Therefore, isn't that what the airline is doing?

    Are they reading private e-mails or tapping private phone calls? If they are, then, and only then, are they doing the same thing the NSA is doing.

    Yes, and it's not what Qantas is doing.

    Again, that's not what they are doing. They are monitoring what people are saying about them on public social networks.

    Anyone who needs to be told that information they post on public social networks may be seen by others isn't very bright, IMO.
     
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  15. viguera
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    It just seems like there's a misunderstanding about what Qantas is doing, or perhaps sensationalizing by the media (as always) to make it seem like it's some egregious invasion of privacy.

    If your twitter profile is public, anything you post can be seen by anybody that cares to look. If you have geolocation enabled and/or care to tag pictures with your location, anybody can do a "nearby" search and see your pictures and/or posts.

    If your facebook profile is public, or if you share something as public, then it's a similar situation. If you equally have no qualms about public check-ins in Foursquare, anybody nearby can see what you post, where you posted it from, etc.

    My best guess is that you have people who are making a ton of public posts, whether they're using the lounge WiFi or not. If I use my phone without WiFi to check-in at a particular venue, or take a picture and share it over Instagram or Facebook or Foursquare and tag it as being in the venue, or leave geolocation on, these can easily be seen by anybody in the vicinity by searching for people nearby, whether I'm tech savvy enough to know this or not.

    I think what you're seeing now is a lot of people that are paying more attention to the fact that what they blast out on the internet as "public" is just the same as shouting it out from a street corner. If you stand in a hotel lobby and start yelling about how somebody looks stupid because of their shoes or how the hotel smells like boiled socks, somebody is going to notice and bring it to your attention.
     
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