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Disney Wants To Track You With RFID

timothy posted about 2 years ago | from the disney-himself-just-relaxes-in-the-nitrogen dept.

Privacy 278

Antipater writes "Disney parks and resorts have long had a system that combined your room key, credit card, and park ticket into a single card. Now, they're taking it a step further by turning the card into an RFID wristband (called a 'MagicBand'), tracking you, and personalizing your park experience, targeted-ad style. 'Imagine booking guaranteed ride times for your favorite shows and attractions even before setting foot in the park,' wrote Tom Staggs, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, in a blog posting on Monday. 'With MyMagic+, guests will be able to do that and more, enabling them to spend more time together and creating an experience that's better for everyone.' Disney does go on to talk about all the things you can opt out of if you have privacy concerns, and the whole system seems to be voluntary or even premium." With a theme park, at least, you can also choose to avoid the place entirely; that makes it, however creepy, a bit different from compulsory education settings, or mandatory car tracking.

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Due to Recent Acquisitions (5, Funny)

eldavojohn (898314) | about 2 years ago | (#42520939)

After watching their recently acquired [slashdot.org] film THX 1138, CEO Bob Iger hailed it as a "feel good" movie although the ending had some flaws and promised to turn all Disney parks and resorts into the futuristic "utopia" from the film. Iger announced at a press conference that Mickey Mouse would replace OMM 0910 as the only approved deity of worship. Iger sat upon a chair made of the late Congressman Sonny Bono's remains while wearing his Grand Dragoon Mousekateer helmet although he refused to answer any questions from reporters who had not been taking their performance enhancing medications.

Re:Due to Recent Acquisitions (0)

Sir_Eptishous (873977) | about 2 years ago | (#42521727)

Wish I had some points.
Brilliant!

Why is this creepy? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521035)

I admit I don't get the reflexive "defend my privacy" stance on slashdot. Why is this "creepy"? You can opt out if you choose, but you can use the system to enhance your experience at the park if you choose. Plus, it gives Disney data to understand patterns and behaviors of people who enjoy the park, and thus allowing them to enhance and modify the park to meet their customer's desires, which makes their experience more enjoyable and increases the value of the park which ultimately makes it more profitable; that sounds like a win-win.

Can someone please explain a scenario, especially when this is voluntarily opt out, where this is a bad thing for people? Note it's also based on your room card/ticket to the park, so it's not like they can track you outside of the park, only when you're on their facility.

Re:Why is this creepy? (1, Troll)

Dan667 (564390) | about 2 years ago | (#42521073)

Because it eventually leads to this.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Lives_of_Others [wikipedia.org]

Especially for corporations.

Re:Why is this creepy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521467)

You wish. The point of that movie is that thye Stasi-officer protects those he's supposed to spy on. As for "big brother is watching you"... That ship has sailed. Yopu *are* under 24/7 surveilance one way or the other.

Re:Why is this creepy? (1)

Dan667 (564390) | about 2 years ago | (#42521995)

maybe you missed that this is how people actually lived for years and years.

Re:Why is this creepy? (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 2 years ago | (#42521621)

What, a kind hearted act and appreciation?

Re:Why is this creepy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42522207)

Corporations don't have the power to spy on people for any reason whatsoever the government reserves that power to itself. Corporations also are a lot about making money not stealing people's girlfriends.

Re:Why is this creepy? (5, Interesting)

flaming error (1041742) | about 2 years ago | (#42521211)

"I don't get the reflexive "defend my privacy" stance on slashdot"

I love that about slashdot. It's a great reflex. But after the reflex should come a little thought / analysis.

I have lots of reflexes, and one is to distrust Disney. But like you, in this case I'm really not seeing the problem.

Re:Why is this creepy? (0)

darkHanzz (2579493) | about 2 years ago | (#42521283)

Read 1984, by George Orwell. That gives a hint.

Re:Why is this creepy? (3, Insightful)

Altus (1034) | about 2 years ago | (#42521383)

Thats what we call a straw man. I have read 1984 and this is not 1984, not even close.

Re:Why is this creepy? (3, Interesting)

Trashcan Romeo (2675341) | about 2 years ago | (#42521579)

The government no longer needs warrants to place trackers on your car and record all your communications. [Because, you know, Terrorism.] When it introduces national identity cards with trackers and a law requiring you to carry it at all times, resistance will have been weakened by people's acquiescence in these Disney style schemes.

"The safest road to Hell is the gradual one--the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts." - C.S. Lewis

Re:Why is this creepy? (1)

kelemvor4 (1980226) | about 2 years ago | (#42521969)

The government no longer needs warrants to place trackers on your car and record all your communications. [Because, you know, Terrorism.] When it introduces national identity cards with trackers and a law requiring you to carry it at all times, resistance will have been weakened by people's acquiescence in these Disney style schemes.

"The safest road to Hell is the gradual one--the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts." - C.S. Lewis

You're right, we should have put a stop to computers long ago!

Re:Why is this creepy? (4, Insightful)

darkHanzz (2579493) | about 2 years ago | (#42521903)

1984 covers an all-watching government. I responded to a comment about "reflexive 'defend my privacy' stance on slashdot". 1984 explains that stance quite well. This articale is about an all-watching disneyland. That's not the same as an all-watching government, but really guys, don't take literature literally and a 1:1 resemblance is not required to explain why people don't like the idea of being tracked.

Re:Why is this creepy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42522227)

In 1984 you couldn't opt out. At Disneyland, you can. I don't see the problem with tracking if the person being tracked has the right to do so, it adds to their experience, and it is only useful in the normal course of utilizing a facility you choose to go to. If you don't like it, don't go to Disneyland. Or don't participate in the tracking service. 1984 is not even remotely relevant.

Re:Why is this creepy? (4, Insightful)

houghi (78078) | about 2 years ago | (#42522099)

It is indeed not 1984. It is the prequel.
I have no fear of my privacy taken away from me. I am afraid of others GIVING theirs away. Because that means that I will not have mine anymore in the end. I know that many people do not believe that untill it will be too late.

Privacy is a bit like virginity. You can only loose it once.

Re:Why is this creepy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42522127)

Read 2013, also by George Orwell.
What, you never heard that George Orwell wrote a novel with this name? And you cannot find any evidence that he did?
Well, what further proof do you need? :-)

Re:Why is this creepy? (1)

Joehonkie (665142) | about 2 years ago | (#42521531)

Maybe my copy of 1984 was defective? Where did it cover voluntary donation of tracking data while at an amusement park?

Re:Why is this creepy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521959)

today voluntary, tomorrow mandatory! won't someone think of the children!

Re:Why is this creepy? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42522107)

Using slippery-slope arguments always starts off so innocently, but by the end of the debate it results in nuclear war!

Re:Why is this creepy? (2)

Mister Whirly (964219) | about 2 years ago | (#42522071)

In the prequel - where all kinds of little benign seeming things happened and people kept saying "I don't see a problem with this."

Re:Why is this creepy? (2)

Minwee (522556) | about 2 years ago | (#42521581)

Read 1984, by George Orwell. That gives a hint.

Is there now a Disney ride called "Room 101" complete with animatronic rats?

Re:Why is this creepy? (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 2 years ago | (#42521643)

Maybe you should read it before using it, becasue this is nothing like 1984.
I did a couple of papers on 1984, so I look forward to your fumbling around for a bad comparison.

Re:Why is this creepy? (1)

i kan reed (749298) | about 2 years ago | (#42522137)

How is this anything like institutionalizing suffering so that the state can be the only benefactor in the lives of its citizens?

Re:Why is this creepy? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521503)

The problem is the slippery possibility of racking up charges when your RFID passes through certain checkpoints. Remember, it's tied to your card.

Also, is the RFID crap going to be extended to kids? What could creepy wierdos find out about your proximity to your kids with this?

Re:Why is this creepy? (1)

skids (119237) | about 2 years ago | (#42521785)

For the most part, in an amusement park setting, assuming it doesn't include hotels, I find it hard to find this very creepy. It's not like you go to such a park to engage in seditious plots, or do not go in expecting to be aggressively advertised to while you are there.

What could creepy wierdos find out about your proximity to your kids with this?

This, however, is a tenable argument as to why it should feel creepy, because companies historically bungle such security concerns. Also the potential for the tech to be piloted in this setting and applied in completely different settings where it would indeed be very creepy.

Re:Why is this creepy? (1)

RKThoadan (89437) | about 2 years ago | (#42522097)

Actually the article made it clear that tying it to a credit card was optional.

As for what someone can find out about your kids. The most likely scenario is that the RFID bracelet just storing a GUID, and all the real data is in a back-end database. The only way a creepy wierdo is going to find anything out about your kids is if said weirdo is a Disney employee with access to the database - which is certainly a possiblity. However, the NY Times article made it clear that parents have complete control over what information it stores about kids.

There's a lot of bad uses for RFID, but there are also some cool and good uses for it. There will certainly be evil marketdroids at Disney data-mining the heck out of this stuff, but in their case there are also people trying to genuinely make your visit more "magical". If the privacy controls are as robust as they say, this is a decent implementation.

Re:Why is this creepy? (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | about 2 years ago | (#42521573)

Reflexes exist for a reason; they help keep you alive.
You can always change your choice after a "defend my privacy" reflex, you can't after a "please take my privacy" reflex.
That's not to say a reflex is always the best option, but it's never the worst.

Re:Why is this creepy? (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 2 years ago | (#42521611)

One way it's creepy is that this will probably include kids. Maybe the message they're getting is "It's okay when corporations track you at all times. In fact, it's MAGIC! (TM)"

I have the same concerns about schools doing it, but with that, it's school, so maybe they'll associate being tracked with negative memories of being forced to do algebra. With disneyland, it would be a positive association. That said, when I went to Disneyworld as a kid, I was so excited about it that I was a whiney bitch the whole time. A 5 minute line was THE WORST THING EVER TO HAPPEN TO ME!

And if they're using this thing to enforce whatever the priority system they have going (something like "Pay an extra arm and leg and you get in the short line") kids might also get the message that tracking like this is just a way of fucking you over.

The targeted advertising is also a bit creepy. I'm guessing it will mainly be seeing which bathroom kids go into, and then they'll know whether to blast "Buzz Lightyear" or whatever it is their marketing staff tells them girls like. Ponies and ribbons or something like that. But considering how exceptionally greedy and efficient Disney already is about getting into your wallet through your kids, I can't imagine this will work out well for me.

Re:Why is this creepy? (2)

nametaken (610866) | about 2 years ago | (#42521565)

Besides which, they already have this. You take your card, put it in a machine at the ride or show, and it gives you a "come back at X time" ticket. This is doing that with rfid.

It works great. You come back and go in a second line, pass all the suckers in the regular line, virtually no wait. :)

Re:Why is this creepy? (4, Interesting)

JWW (79176) | about 2 years ago | (#42521585)

There's also a key in the name of the system -- MyMagic+. This soooo sounds like something Disney will be charging a premium to get.

And heres the value proposition they are selling: How much is it worth to you to schedule your visit to their theme park such that you completely minimize the amount of time you spend in lines throughout the day?

They already know in the basic sense where you are since you bought a ticket to their park, how important is the privacy of what ride you are on at what time?

While I loathe Disney's policy with respect to copyright, these people know how to run a good theme park. I love the Disney theme parks.

Re:Why is this creepy? (1)

SomePgmr (2021234) | about 2 years ago | (#42521669)

I don't think they will. This works well for them... it's opt-in scheduling of all your park guests. They're already masters at controlling the flow of people, now they're going to get much better.

It makes the park experience better for everyone involved, and that's great for them. No reason to charge... and they don't charge right now for this same feature (it's magswipe and paper tickets, currently).

Re:Why is this creepy? (2)

Sique (173459) | about 2 years ago | (#42521671)

I don't want the hotel crew to ruffle through my belongings, and I don't want the park operators to track my behaviour. It's that simple. And yes, I happen to have dirty laundry in my bags, when I am travelling.

Re:Why is this creepy? (5, Insightful)

dpilot (134227) | about 2 years ago | (#42521773)

Disney already collects a ton of information about how their parks are running. It's just not noticeable during normal times. My wife loves WDW - a few years back we went the day after Labor Day and the part was practically deserted. The information collectors were much more visible without the big crowds to hide them. Twice going on the Haunted House ride we got the "wait-time measurement passes" from one of the information people. He gave it to us, and we handed it to the last attendant before the Doom Buggy started into the ride. On this occasion it basically measured our walking time and the delay in the little room.

We also got a chance to chat with one of the information collectors while waiting for a bus. He explained how most visitors felt the day's experience was good if they'd gotten on 6-8 major rides, and they do what they can to make sure everyone has a good experience. After all, that's what gets you back and spending money again.

Really that's their goal - to get you into the park, spending money, and feeling good about it so you'll do it again. (and again, and again, ...)

Re:Why is this creepy? (3, Funny)

kelemvor4 (1980226) | about 2 years ago | (#42522067)

Disney already collects a ton of information about how their parks are running. It's just not noticeable during normal times. My wife loves WDW - a few years back we went the day after Labor Day and the part was practically deserted. The information collectors were much more visible without the big crowds to hide them. Twice going on the Haunted House ride we got the "wait-time measurement passes" from one of the information people. He gave it to us, and we handed it to the last attendant before the Doom Buggy started into the ride. On this occasion it basically measured our walking time and the delay in the little room.

We also got a chance to chat with one of the information collectors while waiting for a bus. He explained how most visitors felt the day's experience was good if they'd gotten on 6-8 major rides, and they do what they can to make sure everyone has a good experience. After all, that's what gets you back and spending money again.

Really that's their goal - to get you into the park, spending money, and feeling good about it so you'll do it again. (and again, and again, ...)

Sounds like a solid business plan. Sell a product or service, do what you can to make your customer like it enough to become a repeat customer. Maybe even get some word of mouth advertising out of it. I think I may have heard something about that in a class somewhere...

Re:Why is this creepy? (4, Interesting)

SomePgmr (2021234) | about 2 years ago | (#42522105)

Really that's their goal - to get you into the park, spending money, and feeling good about it so you'll do it again. (and again, and again, ...)

And they're f'ing amazing at it.

We were just there, and outside Epcot my little nephew said something about only needing two more stuffed characters to complete the list of ones he wanted. I said something like, "not tonight buddy". It was late and after hours (we were headed out at the time).

A young man working customer service, behind glass, heard him say so and asked us to hold up. Remember we're actually outside the park at this point. He asked my nephew what his favorite characters were, grabbed a comp book from behind the counter, and left the customer service area. He walked over to the store next door where he got both of the toys my nephew wanted.

He talked to him a little, signed his character book for him, took a picture... and that was it. The little guy gave him the lucky penny he'd been carrying for days... felt like he had to give something back.

Stuff like that costs Disney about $0.20. They empower their employees to do things like that if they're so compelled. They don't have to have a reason or answer for it later. Meanwhile, the story was worth way more than the little gifts alone and it'll be worth thousands to Disney when we (certainly) come back.

Small story. Seem like nothing... and you only know about it because I told it. But it demonstrates the depth of mastery they have at creating an experience people love.

Re:Why is this creepy? (2)

Jawnn (445279) | about 2 years ago | (#42521775)

Because the notion that some system is making note of your every move during your entire visit, with the express aim of manipulating your behavior (buying more shit) is nothing if not creepy.

Re:Why is this creepy? (5, Funny)

alen (225700) | about 2 years ago | (#42521811)

this is slashdot, people are morons

using google phone with NFC and google wallet with google now in your phone tracking all your movements so they can use it to market and advertise to you is awesome

disney doing the same thing so they can improve the park layout and organization, evil

Re:Why is this creepy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42522141)

using google phone with NFC and google wallet with google now in your phone tracking all your movements so they can use it to market and advertise to you is awesome

Not me. I live in Denver and the Broncos are in the AFC.

Just one question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521049)

... they take the wristband off you when you leave, right?

Right?

Re:Just one question... (1)

DickBreath (207180) | about 2 years ago | (#42521105)

But it's a Magic Band. That's better than an ordinary wrist band. Why would you ever want to take it off?

Privacy concerns? What privacy concerns? This is Disney we're talking about. What could you possibly be concerned about?

Re:Just one question... (1)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about 2 years ago | (#42521251)

evil Mickey for one.

Mirror, Mirror (1)

Thud457 (234763) | about 2 years ago | (#42521511)

I forget. Is evil Mickey is the one without the goatee?

Re:Mirror, Mirror (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about 2 years ago | (#42521555)

I forget. Is evil Mickey is the one without the goatee?

No, they're all evil.

Re:Just one question... (1)

Altus (1034) | about 2 years ago | (#42521405)

yea someone might find out that you rode "Its a small world" 57 times when you were at the park.

Hang on there (1)

John Napkintosh (140126) | about 2 years ago | (#42521067)

Local news media are already saying it's not even available to everyone. They're bundling it for certain people and making it an optional extra for others, and they're really going to have to stretch to come up with good reasons why someone would want to pay extra for an RFID band on a single-day ticket, considering that single day admission is already nearly $100, and you'll be lucky if you get to ride 6 or 8 rides due to the length of lines.

Re:Hang on there (1)

brian1078 (230523) | about 2 years ago | (#42521297)

they're really going to have to stretch to come up with good reasons ... and you'll be lucky if you get to ride 6 or 8 rides due to the length of lines.

You gave the reason right there. People with single day tickets would benefit from the ability to reserve/schedule ride times to maximize their time in the park.

Re:Hang on there (1)

circletimessquare (444983) | about 2 years ago | (#42521703)

RFID is a solution they are trying to the two problems you mention

Sounds great (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521097)

This isn't for you people, its for the rich assholes who don't like to wait in queues with the common folk.

The RFID is for security in case you want to walk among the normals.

Re:Sounds great (2)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | about 2 years ago | (#42522123)

So where are we drawing the "evil rich scum" line this week? $200K? $100K? Anyone who makes more than you?

What about invasion of privacy? (0)

realsilly (186931) | about 2 years ago | (#42521133)

I know it's their park, but since Walt Disney World was granted a 20 year tax break from the government for it's purchase and setup in Florida, I don't quite see it as a private company, even though it is. Even still, if we gripe about something like this being done in Walmart or Target or airports, why the hell would we not gripe about it from an entertainment perspective.

I've paid my entrance fee, to have free roam of the park in certain areas. I do not feel they have the right to track my every move.

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (1)

chemicaldave (1776600) | about 2 years ago | (#42521243)

You said it yourself. It's their park, not yours.

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (3, Funny)

vlm (69642) | about 2 years ago | (#42521401)

You said it yourself. It's their park, not yours.

He said it himself, its not their park its ours, because we paid for it. We should have more say in how something we paid for is run, vs private property. If you don't like the rules for welfare, get off welfare.

Walt Disney World was granted a 20 year tax break from the government

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#42521439)

And you can choose to not get the badge. Besides, you do realize all theme parks such as this use extensive CCTV systems to monitor the park, right? You've never really had privacy when you were in the park to begin. The whole argument is based on a flawed premise:

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (3, Informative)

geekoid (135745) | about 2 years ago | (#42521559)

" its not their park its ours, because we paid for it."
BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHahahaha.
No, they got a tax breaks to put it there, it's not the same as paying for it. A tax break that brought in a lot of jobs, BTW. Jobs that pay taxes.

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521577)

Tax break != you paid for it. By stating that Tax break = you paid for it, you must first make the assumption that all money belongs to the government and they only pay you what you are allowed to keep. Is that how you do your taxes? Asking the government how much of their money you are allowed to keep at the end of the year, or do you send them a portion of your money?

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42522075)

OK, we grant you full control of the square millimeter you paid for.

Way to be another self-important, whining, entitled, pampered geek. Cry some more. Shake your wittle fist.

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521267)

I do not feel they have the right to track my every move.

Then don't get the wristband. Wow, that was hard, right?

the whole system seems to be voluntary

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (2)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#42521351)

And why is this RFID any worse than the extensive CCTV system they already use to monitor the entire park? You aren't dumb enough to think you have privacy in a theme park, right? Outside of restrooms that is.

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (4, Interesting)

vlm (69642) | about 2 years ago | (#42521529)

My decades long experience with CCTV is its mostly anti-employee rather than anti-public. When the rentacops aren't creeping at the hotties, they'll gather evidence against people on someone's list. "Oh look, kid-who-boss-wants-to-fire went to the can for more than the defined 3 minutes".

Adding RFID means those poor bastards in costumes will now have numeric metrics of how many kids they hugged and will be paid WRT competing with each other and so forth. As a social trend/goal I don't think its anything to be proud of or look forward to.

"human flesh worker drone 2426625-131253, the computer reports that your walking speed is 2.8 MPH and we have a meaningless metric that says we must terminate all human flesh worker drones who walk slower than 2.9 MPH so good bye security will escort you off the property" Yeah I bet that's a fabulous place to visit. Then again Alcatraz and the German concentration camps have a lot of visitors and they were not exactly the peak of human happiness, so maybe not so bad.

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521501)

They also have the right to refuse your entry if you disagree to their terms. Simple solution: don't give them your business.

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 2 years ago | (#42521525)

"I've paid my entrance fee, to have free roam of the park in certain areas."
well, you don't. You might want to read it some time.
That said, how does this prevent that?

"I do not feel they have the right to track my every move."
that's great that you feel that way, but they do.
Just like you have the right to track guest in your home.

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521537)

I know it's their park, but since Walt Disney World was granted a 20 year tax break from the government for it's purchase and setup in Florida,

Just to present the other side of the argument, they did create about 60,000 jobs in an area that prior to their arrival was primarily known for its orange groves.

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (1)

vlm (69642) | about 2 years ago | (#42521667)

Just to present the other side of the argument, they did create about 60,000 jobs in an area that prior to their arrival was primarily known for its orange groves.

Ah who needs civil rights when you can have jobs... After all, we need to frame the argument as a binary either or, even though it isn't.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proslavery_in_the_antebellum_United_States [wikipedia.org]

and

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mudsill_theory [wikipedia.org]

Re:What about invasion of privacy? (2)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#42521797)

Civil rights? Over a voluntary RFID badge? Hyperbole much?

Obligatory Bender (5, Funny)

dkleinsc (563838) | about 2 years ago | (#42521137)

"I'm going to build my own theme park! With blackjack! And hookers! You know what- forget the park!"

Re:Obligatory Bender (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521927)

One thing kids like is to be tricked. For instance, I was going to take my little nephew to Disneyland, but instead I drove him to an old burned-out warehouse. "Oh, no," I said. "Disneyland burned down." He cried and cried, but I think that deep down, he thought it was a pretty good joke. I started to drive over to the real Disneyland, but it was getting pretty late.

Its.. (0)

NecroPuppy (222648) | about 2 years ago | (#42521151)

An Orwellian world, after all...
It's an Orwellian world, after all...

Re:Its.. (1)

jasper160 (2642717) | about 2 years ago | (#42521607)

I am sure some toad at the DHS/TSA is looking into this.

Calm Down (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521201)

It's a wristband. You take it off when you leave the park.

I took my family on a Disney cruise and you booked all sorts of things before leaving port. It was nice and the combo room key/charge card/etc was super convenient.

I don't think Disney is hiding the fact that they want to squeeze you for every penny you are willing to give them. Any adult with half a brain can figure that out within a few hours of visiting a park/boarding a ship. They manage to make sure that no matter your budget you can have fun with them and that is no small feat.

Be realistic about your budget and stick to it. I for one really liked going up on deck to a pool that wasn't crowded and having someone bring me a bucket of beers that I had already picked out and paid for - without asking or waiting. If that isn't your style, you can always go with the competition and get overcrowded pools and long lines for a smaller selection of beers that really aren't any cheaper.

Re:Calm Down (1)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about 2 years ago | (#42521357)

The title is orwellian, so most of the posts will be as well, I doubt Disney cares about where you go, at best they'll be able to better gather big dataish walk times between the rides and correlate that to ride times or something.

Re:Calm Down (1)

dpilot (134227) | about 2 years ago | (#42521803)

I mentioned elsewhere on this topic - they want you on their property and spending money. But at the same time, they want you to have a good time, so you'll keep coming back and spending money.

Non-issue (4, Insightful)

gravis777 (123605) | about 2 years ago | (#42521373)

I don't see an issue with this. You already have a room key tied to your credit card number, a pass with your name on it, and you have to book reservations at most of the eating places in Orlando. Disney already has my information for all of that stuff, and pretty much can already track me. Why not have an all-in-one system? Or is it just because its RFID wristband that everyone here is having an issue with?

Re:Non-issue (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521735)

Please note the 'MagicBand' has detected constant back-and-forth wrist motion during each of your 100+ rides on the "The Little Mermaid's, Every Thing is Better Down Where it's Wetter" theme ride. Because of this you be immediately expelled from the park and prevented from re-entering.

Thank you for taking part in Disney's new data logging experiment.

Re:Non-issue (1)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | about 2 years ago | (#42521993)

Some businessperson you'd make. Psh! I'd direct them to the special, adults only Pavillion 34. Now with more Jasmine.

Re:Non-issue (1)

gravis777 (123605) | about 2 years ago | (#42521947)

*That is the Orlando Disney parks and resorts, not the city of Orlando. :-)

Re:Non-issue (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521967)

Or sure, first it's an RFID wrist band. Next it's a chip in the back of your neck.

Don't forget to pack your tinfoil.

Re:Non-issue (1)

PhxBlue (562201) | about 2 years ago | (#42521979)

Or is it just because its RFID wristband that everyone here is having an issue with?

That's probably part of it, along with the worry that the information on the RFID chip would be unencrypted, such that anyone with a reader could spend a day at the park and walk away with much more than $100 worth of people's identities.

Re:Non-issue (1)

bws111 (1216812) | about 2 years ago | (#42522175)

Enlighten me on exactly what is so valuable about knowing someone is Disney Customer 00123865387.

Re:Non-issue (1)

houghi (78078) | about 2 years ago | (#42522161)

I see an issue with all that. Just because it already exists does not mean that I am happy with it.
The RFID is just something else I have a problem with.

Yay, Cory! (3, Interesting)

sootman (158191) | about 2 years ago | (#42521419)

I just finished re-reading Makers. [craphound.com]

She bought it all: all the fast-passes and priority cards, all of it loaded into a grinning Mickey on a lanyard, a wireless pendant that would take care of her everywhere she went in the park, letting her spend money like water.

Thus girded, she consulted with her bellhop some more and laid out an itinerary. Once she'd showered she found she didn't want to wear any of her European tailored shorts and blouses. She wanted to disappear into the Great American Mass. The hotel gift shop provided her with a barkcloth Hawai'ian shirt decorated with tessellated Disney trademarks and a big pair of loose shorts, and once she donned them, she saw that she could be anyone now, any tourist in the park. A pair of cheap sunglasses completed the look and she paid for it all by waving her Mickey necklace at the register, spending money like water.

OK, so it's a bracelet, not a necklace -- otherwise, pretty much spot-on.

Great book, and you can read the whole thing (and all of his books) online for free [craphound.com] in a variety of formats.

Jumped the shark years ago (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521443)

I have no desire to ever step foot in a Disney theme park ever again. Overrated.

and... (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 2 years ago | (#42521493)

It'snot like they don't know where you are. Are you secretly attending their resort without them knowing?
This is all about a better experience at Disney resort. It's a good idea. It's not even creepy.

It's not your home (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521499)

You're already in the public, they already know you are there since you bought tickets. Might as well take advantage of the technology to improve and personalize your experience, they already have each area filled with cameras and tracking when you enter and leave the park.

Good potential (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521567)

I'm all for privacy, but really, is tracking you via RFID much different than the fact that there are literally thousands of cameras in the park now? And don't you fucking slippery-slope me...it's a private park. Don't like, don't pay the $100 to come in.

Outside of the possibilities of better fast pass-style ride reservations and more accurate wait time tracking for ride lines, as a parent, the ability to know you have a backup plan if your kid gets lost in the light show maelstrom would be nice. Also, not having to carry/lose a ticket would be nice...that's happened to my kids before (which meant no fast passes or park-hopping). Also, think of the cool ride personalizations they could do...using your ID for ride pictures (might make girls think twice about joining Club Flash Mountain, sadly), using your name for Buzz Lightyear shooter games...maybe Pooh or Tinkerbell could greet your kid by name (before you use that as the creeper defense, remember that they already get a name for every ticket holder, and it's printed right on the ticket). Most of the benefits go to Disney, but there would be some cool potential perks if they implemented them.

Tinfoil Mickey Mouse Ears For Everyone! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521591)

I've been to Disney twice now with my family, and I gotta say anything they can do to improve the experience, including reducing wait times, is welcome. Exactly what 'privacy' do you need while visiting a resort like this? Like Disney actually cares about your personal data; they care about your CUSTOMER data. They only care about the data that will contribute to their improved algorithms for increased customer experience and service. And if this card EVER posed a security risk to your personal data such as credit card info, like Disney would tolerate that for longer than 2 minutes. They'd fix that faster than Donald Ducks temper.

So get over your bad selves; you (the individual) are not that important. The collective you, as in all of us as customers, is what they really care about.

Why is this creepy? (1)

Thyamine (531612) | about 2 years ago | (#42521689)

You are already in their park, quite probably staying at one of their resorts. If you bought a meal package they know when and where you are eating. Even if you didn't anytime you use your credit card they could determine what and where you are buying things. I am all for protecting my privacy in the general world, but I'm at freakin' Disney doing Disney things for a couple days. No this is not Orwellian. When Google/Apple/Microsoft/the Government start requiring these things, then we can talk.

Amusement parks... (2)

aaaaaaargh! (1150173) | about 2 years ago | (#42521713)

I've never been to any amusement park so I can't tell whether they are actually fun and worth it, but whenever I hear of one I'm thinking of Westworld [imdb.com] with Yul Brynner. Oh, and by the way, whenever someone mentions McDonalds or a circus, It [imdb.com] comes to my mind.

Needless to say I avoid amusement parks and McDonalds.

The downfall (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521721)

The downfall to wristbands is you have to keep them on all the freaking time unless you make it loose enough where you can squeeze it off. I just stayed at a resort where the wrist band was your room key and entry into parks of the resort. PITA to keep it on all the time. If you lost it/broke it, it was $40 to get a freaking new one.

The coolest part was not fumbling with a sleeping kid in your arms trying to get the card reader to read the card. Just smash your wrist to the door and it opened.

Finger prints? (2)

gr8_phk (621180) | about 2 years ago | (#42521733)

With a theme park, at least, you can also choose to avoid the place entirely

Yeah, but when you're already booked and just spent 2 days driving 1200 miles to get there, already checked in and spent one night at a resort, then show up at a theme park where they ask you to stick a finger in a scanner.... That's not really the time to opt-out. Thanks Disney World.

Re:Finger prints? (2)

bws111 (1216812) | about 2 years ago | (#42521983)

Which you can easily opt out of. All you need to do is show ID to prove that you are the same person who used the ticket previously. If even says that right on their FAQ page.

Imagine booking guaranteed ride times,... (1)

s1d3track3D (1504503) | about 2 years ago | (#42521791)

here, please make sure it's secured around my wrist,...

Actually is Dolan (1)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | about 2 years ago | (#42521807)

You do not even want to know where they stick your personalized "hidden Mickey".

Gaming potential (1)

Translation Error (1176675) | about 2 years ago | (#42521833)

Oooh, am I the only one visualizing RollerCoaster Tycoon: Disney LARP version?

Visitor #1176675 (Translation Error) has been trapped in It's a Small World for 2 hours.
Visitor #1176675 (Translation Error) is very unhappy.

I find this helpfull actually. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42521847)

With and RFID band tracking your movements, and maybe your kids as well in their massive parks, I have no trouble with this. There are times when at least one of my 3 has vanished in the blink of an eye, only to reappear shortly thereafter in some store we are in. I haven't taken them to Disney yet, but it would be nice to have the comfort of knowing if one of my kids ran off and got lost, the RFID band would be able to tell me where they were faster than security could search for them manually.

but if google did it, then it would be awesome (1)

alen (225700) | about 2 years ago | (#42521851)

imagine the awesomeness if they gave you a loaner nexus phone with google now to track you in the park, let you pay with google wallet, make some limited free calls, plan your vacation and track your movements to organize the park better

that would be a geek wet dream come true

i mean how awesome would it be if you put in your plan for the day and disney google now told you when to leave your hotel and where to have breakfast to make the most of your time

A welcome assitance (1)

ThatsNotPudding (1045640) | about 2 years ago | (#42521869)

to Yul Brenner wearing a cowboy hat...

This Has Already Been Used Places (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42522023)

The music festival Bonnaroo has been doing this for 2 years now. The first year was a complete failure with large plastic bracelets that only tracked when you entered the festival grounds and left everyday by having you tap your hand. The second year was much better with a return to cloth bracelets with a square block that was interweaved onto it. If you registered your name with the # you were provided on the bracelet and put your facebook information in it would tell everyone when you entered the park and you can "check in" at each stage or other areas by tapping your hand against one of the many panels setup around the festival grounds.

Basically Disney may be the first mainstream place to be doing this but its been around for a few years now with smaller places trying to perfect how it works. I would say its not even close to perfect yet but seeing how far they came in 1 year and seeing how much more money Disney can throw at it im sure it will be perfected when its used in their theme parks. I still don't know how they will get around the fact that you have to tap a device for each location you visit. Basically if you don't check in you are not really being tracked. One things for sure they really want to see exactly what people do all day, but im sure its only to make the experience for everyone better in the end by adjusting areas that they didn't know people went to so much with more to do or more food. I don't see why people think this is that bad.

If you lost your kids at Disney... (2)

Picass0 (147474) | about 2 years ago | (#42522205)

I took my family to WDW in Orlando last year for a week. We had a great time, no problems. But one concern I had the entire time was "what if we get seperated from the kids?" I'm sure this happens constantly at the park and there's a whole system in place.

Before we left I installed an App on my android that featured maps of the four parks, wait times for rides, locations of characters, restaurants and all that. What if you could your individual party members on your phone? "Person 1 scanned their wristband at Star Tours at 12:34pm"

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