Smart Barbie Puts Child's Play In The Cloud - InformationWeek

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4/5/2015
11:06 AM
Ariella Brown
Ariella Brown
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Smart Barbie Puts Child's Play In The Cloud

You won't see children's dolls talked about much on InformationWeek. But we couldn't let Smart Barbie pass us by without a word.

(Image: ToyTalk Blog)

(Image: ToyTalk Blog)

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Ariella
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Ariella,
User Rank: Author
12/21/2015 | 9:55:39 AM
Re: Permissions required
Barbie keeps making the news here Bluebox offers a whitepaper on all the security vulnerabilities found in the connected toy. See http://offers.bluebox.com/resource-whitepaper-hello-barbie-app.html
Ariella
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Ariella,
User Rank: Author
4/7/2015 | 10:25:42 AM
Re: Permissions required
@moarsauce123 I'm sure many agree with you. My daughters were never really into Barbie dolls, and one of them found any animated doll creepy. That was even without the benefit of personalized answers.I'm more in the camp of not seeing this as healthy because it has the child engage in pre-scripted conversations with a doll rather than in real conversations with other people. The developmental benefit of playing with dolls is that it enhances imagination for a child who plans out scenarios and conversations. This technology eliminates that. 
moarsauce123
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moarsauce123,
User Rank: Ninja
4/7/2015 | 7:40:11 AM
Re: Permissions required
Yes, it only records when the button is pressed, but that recording goes to a third party and there is really no telling what they do with that data. On top of that, this kind of surveillance toy is just creepy beyond repair.
Ariella
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Ariella,
User Rank: Author
4/6/2015 | 9:44:29 AM
Re: Permissions required
LOL @Whoopty It only records when the button on the belt is pressed. Parents are actually able to get data reports and to declare certain terms off limits for the record. Nevertheless, privacy advocates are concerned about the children's susceptibility to suggestion for marketing based on what they give away about themselves. I'd also think there's some concern about things said in confidence (to one's doll) should be kept sealed from any other ears -- even parental ones -- rather like a diary.
Whoopty
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Whoopty,
User Rank: Ninja
4/6/2015 | 9:01:17 AM
Permissions required
Just like Microsoft's Kinect and certain always-on smart TVs, I really don't like the idea of people listening constantly to my home. Hopefully there's a time based limit to how long it listens for, otherwise I think you'll find parents pulling the batteries out of this thing whenever they get the chance. 
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