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Agree to share stuff with LG or it’ll make your Smart TV ‘stupid’

Published May 21st, 2014 5:15PM EDT
LG Smart TV Privacy Policy

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LG is apparently taking a more aggressive approach to collecting user data from Smart TVs that can be then sold to advertisers, TechDirt reports, as the company is ready to turn a Smart TV into a rather “stupid” TV for users who fail to accept its privacy policy.

“Because I will not agree to LG’s Privacy Policy, I can now no longer access/use any of the TV’s network based programs: Iplayer, Skype, 3D etc,” a reader wrote to the publication.

He continued, “As of the 7th May following a software update to our less than two-year old LG TV, I was confronted with a message asking me to read and agree with a couple of important new documents. So like a good little citizen I read and agreed with the first doc regarding use of said TV. But having read the Privacy Doc I was not best pleased with the company’s assumption that I would simply agree to their sharing all our intimate viewing details (plus whatever else they can see) with all and sundry.”

In its privacy policy, LG clearly explains that it won’t make certain smart features of its TV available to the user unless he or she accepts the conditions. Furthermore, the company reveals what data it collects, saying that it wants to know how you interact with the program content, how you view it, what terms you use to search for content and what you do while you watch content, including search activities.

What’s disconcerting, but unsurprising considering that many companies collect user data for advertising purposes, is that LG wants to share that data with others. “When you use LivePlus, we may share certain Viewing Information, Device Information, and Basic Usage Information with third parties for advertising or analytics purposes and to enable the provision of information relevant to what you are viewing,” the privacy policy reads.

However, it doesn’t look like it’s perfectly clear to an LG Smart TV buyer before the purchase that the smart features of the TV will only be available once he or she agrees to the privacy policy, and only while he or she agrees with LG’s demands.

This isn’t the first time LG has been accused of messing with users’ privacy on its Smart TVs. A previous report revealed that LG was collecting far more data from its TVs, without the user’s knowledge, including data taken from third-party devices connected to the TV for content-watching purposes.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.

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