JunkBusters voices concerns of Amazon's new honor pay system...
March 21, 2001 9:25 AM   Subscribe

JunkBusters voices concerns of Amazon's new honor pay system... an interesting link for all of us here, as we've noticed a proliferation of blogs/personal sites (including MeFi) using the system. Do you want Amazon to know you're a MetaFillistine? Comments?
posted by silusGROK (3 comments total)
I didn't mean for that to sound so alarmist... I'm not that concerned because the "snooping" technology is only in-force if I visit a page with the Honor Pay widget present. Matt's been good enough to put the widget on its own page, but not all bloggers have been so considerate.
posted by silusGROK at 9:28 AM on March 21, 2001

As Gluechunk notes, Amazon says:

"Does the Amazon Honor System record the sites that I visit?
"No. Even though the Amazon Honor System generates personalized payboxes, we do not save copies of those payboxes. Most Web server computers automatically create logs of information transmitted over the Internet. The Amazon Honor System uses special software that removes your name and similar information from the system's records before they are stored in our server logs. We do not maintain records on any of our internal computers that track the Web sites you visit or would permit us to construct a record of the Web sites you visit."

Basically, Amazon says, "We won't know you're a MetaFilistine." To which privacy extremists like JunkBusters and Dan Gillmor say, "Sure you won't."

I'm with Cameron, who just this week pointed out that Amazon has always given him reasons to trust it.
posted by luke at 7:39 PM on March 21, 2001

I like Amazon, for the most part. With the exception of certain patent issues, they're one of the few eCommerce companies I'm aware of the get that ephemeral it (not ginger :-) so completely.

But things can change. Lets say, 2 or 3 years down the road, the board that controls the company decides to start harvesting personal data for better demographic information or just as a way to get some more cash.

They don't store it now, which is cool and great, but there's no guarantee in their privacy statements or anywhere else that says "This will never change" which is really the issue that JunkBusters are pointing out.

For now it's all well and good and useful, but it's something to keep aware of for the future.
posted by cCranium at 6:13 AM on March 22, 2001

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