Xbox One’s Kinect 2.0 could be affected by proposed “We Are Watching You Act”

Wednesday, 19th June 2013 19:44 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

Xbox One’s Kinect may violate a new bill representatives from Massachusetts and North Carolina have submitted to the House.

According to the bill drafted by Mike Capuano (D-MA) and Walter Jones (R-NC) called the “We Are Watching You Act” the bill could make certain tech, like Kinect 2.0, warn users with alterns letting them “know” they are being watched and that their data is being stored by the device.

“This may sound preposterous but it is neither a joke nor an exaggeration,” said congressman Capuano in a House of Representatives press release. “These DVRs would essentially observe consumers as they watch television as a way to super-target ads. It is an incredible invasion of privacy. Given what we have recently learned about the access that the government has to the phone numbers we call, the emails we send and the websites we visit, it is important for consumers to decide for themselves whether they want this technology.

“Think about what you do in the privacy of your own home and then think about how you would feel sharing that information with your cable company, their advertisers and your government.”

“Allowing this type of technology to be installed in the homes of individuals without their consent would be an egregious invasion of privacy,” said Congressman Jones. “When the government has an unfortunate history of secretly collecting private citizens’ information from technology providers, we must ensure that safeguards are in place to protect Americans’ rights.”

If passed, the bill would make sure the warnings were flashed before the customer used device, or “allowing for screen prompts indicating when data or users are being monitored, recorded or watched is always helpful,” reports Cinema Blend.

At present, the bill is taking issue with telecommunications companies using DVRs, but the bill would encompass anything targeting user generated data taken from the privacy of one’s home.



  1. OlderGamer

    Makes me wonder does my DVR collect info of me and what type, and who receives it?

    #1 2 years ago
  2. ayman03


    #2 2 years ago
  3. Stephany Nunneley

    @1 Same here! Makes me want to call DishNet and know if someone other than the billing department knows I bought Superhero Whores 5… I mean…. that Disney movie…. (J/k LOL) but now seriously, it makes me wonder if they tell TBS how many hours I spend watching it.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. salarta

    The senators probably can’t use this example themselves since it would make some idiots start calling them conspiracy theorists, but a better way of imagining the issue is to ask how it would feel to have those private home moments passed along to your boss or your friends. It may seem like it’s no big deal with the government, under the assumption that the government is some non-human entity, but there’s nothing to say that the government’s information about you couldn’t leak out.

    @3: Superhero Whores 5, eh? I shudder to think how many scenes of that have Christian Bale in a thong. :P

    #4 2 years ago
  5. Ireland Michael

    …wouldn’t it make a lot more sense to simply make those invasions of privacy illegal?

    Mind you, the EU already has laws in place regarding the collection of personal data. The laws are so strict you even have to tell people that your site uses cookies, which I personally think is hilarious.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. Tavarish

    @2 I’m not even from US and I hope this bill goes through and MS has to make huge pop up about theirs surveillance device :D

    #6 2 years ago
  7. salarta

    @6: It’s not much of a shocker for someone not in the U.S. to hope such a bill goes through. What one country does can set a precedent for other countries to follow, and alternately it could force a company to change their behavior and plans in ways that the changes have to be duplicated in other areas.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. ps3fanboy

    *cough*…*cough*.. erm… (kinect robot voice) yes you in the room. before you will play your game i must inform you that kinect will record all video and sound, then send the information to NSA. press (a) to accept or (b) to shutdown the xbone… LMAO!.

    #8 2 years ago
  9. fearmonkey

    Xbox Prism – I still think that is a better name than Xbox One, and possibly more fitting.

    #9 2 years ago
  10. MCTJim

    OMG another article full of crap. It doesn’t collect any personal information about you unless you let give it permission or opt in.

    Nice headline again…MAY violate, well you MAY get hit by a truck when you leave work or you MAY have ice cream for a snack…so misleading… when you can go right to MS’s site and read what MS has said about it..its have to OPT in or give it permission.

    If you interested in what the NSA is doing..which is completely wrong btw and it does bother me that my own country spys on conservatives please visit the foxnews page or Mr conservative’s page.

    #10 2 years ago
  11. manamana

    Catchy headline indeed but isn’t it noteworthy that Microsft really has some daily (albeit negative) attention since E3?

    #11 2 years ago
  12. Tech-N9ne

    Here we go again bitching about Kinect, yet everyone carries around a smartphone with at least 1 cameras, a microphone, at least 3 sensors, with all your private info and messages, always connected to the internet, always with you at work, in the bus, on the train, in bathroom, when your sleeping, when your &%^#.
    Yet I don’t see anyone bitching about that. Instead your bitching about a stationary device in a corner of you living room that can be unplugged!

    Yep, very smart people!

    #12 2 years ago
  13. lookingglass

    This will never pass in its current form. Smartphones have always on cameras too. And targeted advertising? Sign me up. I’m tired of seeing adverts targeted at +60 year olds and other stuff I don’t care about or can’t use.

    This sounds like a ploy to get lobbying money. Generate publicity while we’re scared from the NSA stuff, propose a doomed to fail bill, sit back and wait for media and tech companies to offer hush money. American politics at its finest.

    #13 2 years ago
  14. ps3fanboy

    @12 i have and sony ericsson phone from 2007. there is no always online bs on it… its not everyone has a smartphone. smart people dont…

    #14 2 years ago
  15. Stephany Nunneley

    @12 “stationary device in a corner of you living room that can be unplugged” if you mean while you are not playing the system? Sure, you can. But not while the console is in use, no.

    And to the others: I have not said ONE BAD THING about Xbox One since it was announced. Never even offered my opinion on either console. So, there. :p

    @14 I have a Jitterbug. (j/k)

    #15 2 years ago
  16. OwningXylophone


    Come on now, MS already adressed all of this. You can disable Kinect while using the XBone.

    Edit: swapped turn off to disable to be more accurate

    #16 2 years ago
  17. zinc

    Wait… You mean my smartphone is constantly watching the inside of my pocket!


    #17 2 years ago
  18. sg1974

    @12 Alleged goings on in NSA etc aside, the authorities (mostly in the US and EU) regularly look at privacy and security around devices such as mobiles. Explain why they shouldn’t take a look at Kinect 2.0 as well?

    #18 2 years ago
  19. Stephany Nunneley

    @16 I didn’t say you couldn’t “pause it” or not have control over the “privacy bit”.

    #19 2 years ago
  20. melonbuster1

    Lol this is the most anti Microsoft site I’ve ever seen

    #20 2 years ago
  21. OwningXylophone

    I took that as implied, so apologies. Yeah, it has to be plugged in but can be disabled.

    They absolutely should look into whether Kinect 2.0 invades privacy, but assuming Kinect does exactly what MS are saying, in the way they are saying, then this bill shouldn’t be an issue.

    #21 2 years ago
  22. sg1974

    @20 Not anti-MS. Anti-DRM and anti-confused privacy policies.

    #22 2 years ago

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