GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019

Anything to do with games at all.
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Victor Mildew
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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by Victor Mildew » Thu Oct 24, 2019 1:27 pm

That's what they want you to think

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Moggy
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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by Moggy » Thu Oct 24, 2019 1:34 pm

OrangeRKN wrote:I don't know what to tell you - online storefronts track a lot of information about customers (more than just their purchases), as do credit card companies, and none of those claims of data collection are controversial. In what way is acknowledging something that quite evidently happens paranoid?


But it is paranoia to avoid using a console storefront to protect your privacy. Everything you do on the console can be or already is logged, you are really not avoiding much snooping just because you put a disc in rather than clicking “buy now”. The physical shops and the steps needed to get to the shops also involve various methods of snooping and loss of privacy.

The paranoia comment isn’t based on what you say being technically wrong, it’s more that I just don’t see why you would care. So MS know I bought a game (unlikely as I usually get by on Games with Gold and Gamepass ;) ), so what?

I can see the issue when it comes to things like Facebook – that really is an insidious hellhole – but buying digital games? I just don’t see any real privacy concerns there.

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by BID0 » Thu Oct 24, 2019 1:37 pm

Yeh as has been said you are giving away more information buying a physical copy from a physical store as you're interacting with multiple organisations along the way. And at the end of that whole journey, the console still knows what game you're playing and how long you're spent playing game mode X or sat idle on menu Y.

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by Lex-Man » Thu Oct 24, 2019 1:52 pm

Moggy wrote:
OrangeRKN wrote:I don't know what to tell you - online storefronts track a lot of information about customers (more than just their purchases), as do credit card companies, and none of those claims of data collection are controversial. In what way is acknowledging something that quite evidently happens paranoid?


But it is paranoia to avoid using a console storefront to protect your privacy. Everything you do on the console can be or already is logged, you are really not avoiding much snooping just because you put a disc in rather than clicking “buy now”. The physical shops and the steps needed to get to the shops also involve various methods of snooping and loss of privacy.

The paranoia comment isn’t based on what you say being technically wrong, it’s more that I just don’t see why you would care. So MS know I bought a game (unlikely as I usually get by on Games with Gold and Gamepass ;) ), so what?

I can see the issue when it comes to things like Facebook – that really is an insidious hellhole – but buying digital games? I just don’t see any real privacy concerns there.


Unless of course you keep your console offline as much as possible. Although if you go online they've probably got at least a list of all of the games you've played on your console.

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by OrangeRKN » Thu Oct 24, 2019 1:56 pm

Moggy wrote:I can see the issue when it comes to things like Facebook – that really is an insidious hellhole – but buying digital games? I just don’t see any real privacy concerns there.


My concern is primarily with my bank or card provider building up a robust profile and history of myself and my purchasing habits, of which videogames are only one small but contributing aspect. Hence my stressing of physical games being purchasable with cash.

Moggy wrote:...you are really not avoiding much snooping just because you put a disc in rather than clicking “buy now”. The physical shops and the steps needed to get to the shops also involve various methods of snooping and loss of privacy.


Not necessarily. You're basically saying the same as:

BID0 wrote:...you are giving away more information buying a physical copy from a physical store as you're interacting with multiple organisations along the way.


This is simply untrue

I would also add that such data is more valuable in greater volume, and so given a choice between that data being consolidated with a single company versus being distributed amongst many, distributed is likely better for those concerned with privacy (although that isn't the argument being made here).

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by Moggy » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:10 pm

OrangeRKN wrote:
Moggy wrote:I can see the issue when it comes to things like Facebook – that really is an insidious hellhole – but buying digital games? I just don’t see any real privacy concerns there.


My concern is primarily with my bank or card provider building up a robust profile and history of myself and my purchasing habits, of which videogames are only one small but contributing aspect. Hence my stressing of physical games being purchasable with cash.

Moggy wrote:...you are really not avoiding much snooping just because you put a disc in rather than clicking “buy now”. The physical shops and the steps needed to get to the shops also involve various methods of snooping and loss of privacy.


Not necessarily. You're basically saying the same as:

BID0 wrote:...you are giving away more information buying a physical copy from a physical store as you're interacting with multiple organisations along the way.


This is simply untrue

I would also add that such data is more valuable in greater volume, and so given a choice between that data being consolidated with a single company versus being distributed amongst many, distributed is likely better for those concerned with privacy (although that isn't the argument being made here).


What extra information are you giving away from buying a digital copy instead of a physical copy?

If the console is online then it’s identical, except for the payment.

I understand your bank/card provider concern, but I don’t share it. My bank might know I’ve bought a game, I cannot see why that would be a concern over the bank seeing I withdraw lots of cash or buy lots of prepaid cards.

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by Jenuall » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:11 pm

Games, whether physical or digital, are essentially an access key at this point. The company running the service that you redeem, unlock and play that game will collect exactly the same data on you whether you bought it at GAME or from the digital store. The only difference with buying physical is the data held about your purchase habits is now shared by more than one organisation.

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by Winckle » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:18 pm

OrangeRKN wrote:
Moggy wrote:I can see the issue when it comes to things like Facebook – that really is an insidious hellhole – but buying digital games? I just don’t see any real privacy concerns there.


My concern is primarily with my bank or card provider building up a robust profile and history of myself and my purchasing habits, of which videogames are only one small but contributing aspect. Hence my stressing of physical games being purchasable with cash.


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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by OrangeRKN » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:22 pm

Moggy wrote:What extra information are you giving away from buying a digital copy instead of a physical copy?

If the console is online then it’s identical, except for the payment.


You just answered your own question. With a physical purchase, all that anyone knows is that you posses the game (and the only person who knows that is the console company). They don't know where, for how much or even if you bought it. With a digital purchase, all of that purchase information becomes known by both the console company and your card provider.

Jenuall wrote:The only difference with buying physical is the data held about your purchase habits is now shared by more than one organisation.


With physical there can be no data on your purchase at all.

(Physical games are still not the equivalent of access keys - they can be resold, the purchase is not tied to an online account, and many games can be played off disc/cart and offline without any additional download)

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by Moggy » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:30 pm

OrangeRKN wrote:
Moggy wrote:What extra information are you giving away from buying a digital copy instead of a physical copy?

If the console is online then it’s identical, except for the payment.


You just answered your own question. With a physical purchase, all that anyone knows is that you posses the game (and the only person who knows that is the console company). They don't know where, for how much or even if you bought it. With a digital purchase, all of that purchase information becomes known by both the console company and your card provider.


Well that all depends on how you purchase it.

The people that know the details of your purchase are:

Digital

Your bank/card company
The console manufacturer
The publisher

Physical – card payment
The shop
Your bank/card company
The console manufacturer (although they will not know the price you paid)
The publisher (although they will not know the price you paid)

Physical – cash/pre-paid card payment
Your bank will see how much money you have withdrawn/added to a pre-paid card/paid for a pre-paid card
The console manufacturer (although they will not know the price you paid)
The publisher (although they will not know the price you paid)

None of those steps involve much privacy.

Unless you keep the console completely offline and only pay in cash (and even then the bank knows you withdrew cash) then there are no real privacy protections in place from buying physical games.

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by ianfianf » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:35 pm

I receive the majority of my games via morse code.

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by OrangeRKN » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:35 pm

1) Generally cash is not withdrawn for each individual purchase in the amount needed for said purchase
2) The bank cannot directly equate any cash withdrawal to what it was used to purchase

Suggesting that cash is not in any way more private than card payment is just ????

I'll make sure to tell my local drug dealer he may as well start accepting card next time I see him

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by Lex-Man » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:37 pm

I just play Tuxkart.

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by BID0 » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:38 pm

OrangeRKN wrote:
BID0 wrote:...you are giving away more information buying a physical copy from a physical store as you're interacting with multiple organisations along the way.


This is simply untrue

I would also add that such data is more valuable in greater volume, and so given a choice between that data being consolidated with a single company versus being distributed amongst many, distributed is likely better for those concerned with privacy (although that isn't the argument being made here).

It really is true unfortunately.

In both scenarios Microsoft/Sony/Nintendo/Steam/etc know you have bought a game. They will track what you do with your game.

On top of that by purchasing a physical copy from a physical store then your face/vehicle registration plates will be stored across a number of CCTV systems from the point of leaving your home, to visiting a cash machine, to sitting on a bus/parking your car, walking through a town centre and inside the store. If you have a smart phone on you then your entire journey will be recorded by the device manufacturer as well as any apps you happen to open during your day or have running in the background. If the store runs a loyalty scheme then they will track which stores you visit, what you buy, if you have used their website then they will know which pages you have viewed and if you leave things in your shopping basket.

Plus typically using cash in 2019 looks dodgy to your bank and whoever else is seeing you withdrawing £XX in cash daily/weekly/monthly

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by Moggy » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:43 pm

OrangeRKN wrote:1) Generally cash is not withdrawn for each individual purchase in the amount needed for said purchase
2) The bank cannot directly equate any cash withdrawal to what it was used to purchase

Suggesting that cash is not in any way more private than card payment is just ????

I'll make sure to tell my local drug dealer he may as well start accepting card next time I see him

That’s not what I said though was it?

My point was that if you are concerned about your bank knowing you are buying things, then you are not exactly hiding your spendthrift ways when they can see you are withdrawing cash.

What possible difference does it make if the bank sees £50 going to Game or £50 coming out in cash?

And your local dealer may well be accepting cards by now: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-g ... e-37386844

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by Gemini73 » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:45 pm

I think any notion of real privacy in today's environment is pretty redundant.

When I worked at Moss Bros there was this occasion where this chap didn't want to to put his address into the system to process an order due to his privacy concerns.

He then handed me a credit card to make payment...

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by OrangeRKN » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:59 pm

BID0 wrote:In both scenarios Microsoft/Sony/Nintendo/Steam/etc know you have bought a game. They will track what you do with your game.


In the physical scenario Microsoft/Sony/Nintendo/Steam/etc know you posses a game, not that you bought it or for how much (which they do know in the digital scenario). In the digital scenario, that knowledge also extends to your bank (or whatever you used to make the purchase).

BID0 wrote:On top of that by purchasing a physical copy from a physical store then your face/vehicle registration plates will be stored across a number of CCTV systems from the point of leaving your home, to visiting a cash machine, to sitting on a bus/parking your car, walking through a town centre and inside the store.


1) AFAIK, and as I previously stated, the large majority of CCTV is not used for the mass tracking of individuals, but only for live security monitoring and as a reference for the investigation of specific instances of crime. It is dissimilar to browsing the web, where trackers are very much near constantly in use recording and analysing your individual journeying around the web - and I'm sure such tracking is done within the gaming digital storefronts too. That isn't to say CCTV isn't a concern - it is! But to suggest that CCTV makes physical purchasing less private than online is not a reasonable claim to make.

2) I don't have a car ;)

BID0 wrote:If you have a smart phone on you then your entire journey will be recorded by the device manufacturer as well as any apps you happen to open during your day or have running in the background. If the store runs a loyalty scheme then they will track which stores you visit, what you buy, if you have used their website then they will know which pages you have viewed and if you leave things in your shopping basket.


These are all avoidable (the last point being moot, we're talking about physical purchases from brick-and-mortar stores). I don't use loyalty cards and my phone will not have wifi, data, bluetooth or location turned on in most situations. Regardless, for the purpose of advertising, that data is somewhat less valuable and certainly much harder to tie together to give overall insight into my activity (my journey is doubtful to be in isolation for a single purpose and is more difficult to collate). Again though, as with CCTV, you're not wrong to say that this kind of tracking is certainly concerning!

Moggy wrote:What possible difference does it make if the bank sees £50 going to Game or £50 coming out in cash?


The vast majority of data collection is driven by advertisers looking to profile you so that they can better target you with relevant ads in hope of selling to you more. Knowing that you withdrew £50 cash compared to knowing that you spent £50 on x product at y time in z shop is so obviously very different I don't know why you're even arguing otherwise!

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by OrangeRKN » Thu Oct 24, 2019 3:02 pm

Gemini73 wrote:I think any notion of real privacy in today's environment is pretty redundant.

When I worked at Moss Bros there was this occasion where this chap didn't want to to put his address into the system to process an order due to his privacy concerns.

He then handed me a credit card to make payment...


I don't know the exact situation, but using a credit card that has your address on it is not the same as inputting your address into a system - the card is only used at the time of purchase and the address information should not be stored by the company, whereas it may well be if it is directly given.

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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by Gemini73 » Thu Oct 24, 2019 3:11 pm

OrangeRKN wrote:
Gemini73 wrote:I think any notion of real privacy in today's environment is pretty redundant.

When I worked at Moss Bros there was this occasion where this chap didn't want to to put his address into the system to process an order due to his privacy concerns.

He then handed me a credit card to make payment...


I don't know the exact situation, but using a credit card that has your address on it is not the same as inputting your address into a system - the card is only used at the time of purchase and the address information should not be stored by the company, whereas it may well be if it is directly given.


The point I was trying to make (perhaps not clearly with that scenario) is as a credit card user all his personal details, name, DOB, home address and so forth are already in the wider system. Choosing not to share your details with a shop won't make any difference. As I suggested above, real privacy in today's environment is an illusion.

Last edited by Gemini73 on Thu Oct 24, 2019 3:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostRe: GAME (as in the shop GAME): Retailer Of The Year 2019
by Moggy » Thu Oct 24, 2019 3:11 pm

OrangeRKN wrote:
The vast majority of data collection is driven by advertisers looking to profile you so that they can better target you with relevant ads in hope of selling to you more. Knowing that you withdrew £50 cash compared to knowing that you spent £50 on x product at y time in z shop is so obviously very different I don't know why you're even arguing otherwise!


How often do advertisers obtain details from your bank regarding your purchases?

That sort of data would be sold to advertisers by the console storefront operator, it makes no difference if you digitally bought the game or just inserted a disc,

I wasn’t arguing that there was no difference between a game purchase and a cash withdrawal from the point of view of a bank knowing exactly what you did, I was responding more to this:

My concern is primarily with my bank or card provider building up a robust profile and history of myself and my purchasing habits


£50 in cash once a month isn’t much different from a profiling aspect. The bank still know your spending habit, they just don’t know if that’s crack cocaine or Crackdown 3.

The real question is if you are actually worried about your bank knowing you buy games. What is the concern there?

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