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Wiretapping for Dollars

Posted by: Rob Hof on September 24, 2007

No, it’s no joke: A company called Pudding Media is offering people free Internet phone service if they allow advertisers to pitch them ads based on the content of their calls. That’s right: They’re going to analyze people’s conversations and run ads related to what they’re saying.

In an era when new privacy concerns rear their head daily, this one seems like a nonstarter. Although the company claims young people aren’t that concerned with privacy issues, I would think this one borders on the creepy for nearly anyone. Plus, Skype’s already free, and even to call regular phone lines, it’s only about two cents a minute. There’s no end of people who recognize this for what it is, a dumb idea. Too bad Pudding’s investors weren’t among them.

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Reader Comments


September 25, 2007 01:13 AM

Uh, yeah. It's creepy. Really creepy.

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BusinessWeek writers Peter Burrows, Cliff Edwards, Olga Kharif, Aaron Ricadela, Douglas MacMillan, and Spencer Ante dig behind the headlines to analyze what’s really happening throughout the world of technology. One of the first mainstream media tech blogs, Tech Beat covers everything from tech bellwethers like Apple, Google, and Intel and emerging new leaders such as Facebook to new technologies, trends, and controversies.



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