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New Facebook Mic Feature Gathers Data on What You're Watching

by Fox Van Allen on May 23, 2014

Facebook's new TV/music identification featureThis week, Facebook announced a new Shazam-like feature coming to its mobile app capable of automatically detecting what song you’re listening to or which television shows or movies you’re watching while writing status updates.

The social network explained how the new feature works on the Facebook newsroom blog. “If you’ve turned the feature on, you’ll see an audio icon moving on the screen when you write a status update. If the feature finds a match, you can then choose to add the song, TV show or movie to your post. Like with any post, you choose who can see it. You can also turn the feature off at any time by clicking the audio icon in the top right of the screen.”

The new feature has two purposes. The first is to make it easier to share what TV shows you’re watching with your friends. The second, of course, is to collect more data about you so you can be effectively advertised to. Facebook told the International Business Times that while “no sound is stored,” data about what you’re watching or listening to will be.

“If a match is successfully made, the data is saved, but all data is anonymized and aggregated,” says Facebook spokesperson MoMo Zhao.

Bottom line: If you feel the urge to share what TV show you’re watching or what song you’re listening to on Facebook, you’re best off doing so manually. Still, if you want to give the new feature a try, it’ll be available on Android and iOS “in the coming weeks.”

You can learn more about Facebook’s Music and TV Identification feature on the Facebook newsroom blog or by watching the short promo video below. For more on managing your Facebook data, check out our Comprehensive Guide to Facebook Privacy Settings.


Facebook, News, Mobile Apps, Android Apps, iPhone/iPad Apps, Music & Video Services, Blog, Privacy, Social Networking

Discussion loading


From Mary Withrow on May 27, 2014 :: 12:23 pm

I dislike facebook, don’t care what song you are listening to or what you had for dinner, lol - Many sites require you to login with facebook or goggle/wordpress, etc. Most of Facebook’s revenue comes from advertising.  Which means we should bring them down! lol



From Julie on May 27, 2014 :: 1:59 pm

If I want my friends to know what I’m watching or listening to, I am very capable of typing it myself. Can’t they just use our interests as a guide to effective, targeted advertising? Maybe I’m just being ignorant, but this whole new eavesdropping seems excessive to me.


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