BT’s Big Brother Ads Will Go Live.


In London, the most over-monitored city in this sector of the galaxy, BT has announced today it will proceed with behavior targeted ads at its broadband user community. We have been following this service trial (called Webwise) over the past year and were interested in seeing the final outcome.

Its a go

The results are in and BT said it would proceed along with its co-conspirator, Phorm, on a full blown deployment.

Phorm was a former rootkit developer who now focuses on buying your browsing history from your ISP, delivering you targeted ads, then pretending they’re offering you a useful service.

Karl Bode, DSLReports.com, 2008-10-06

The trial was the subject of much debate and criticism over the past three months. We wrote earlier about Blyk, and its ad supported mobile phone service, and we all get ticked with Google who reads everything we mail, or search or perhaps even what we think, so does anyone mind this intrusion into our privacy? Well it seems not so much according to a poll we’ve been following over at Billing and OSS World.

Past funny business

Phorm has a somewhat checkered past as its predecessor company, 121Media, in 2005 was a rootkit developer—nasty bit of work, that. BT is not without its own issues, they secretly ran an undercover trial in 2007 and during the announced trial they deleted any related commentary in its broadband forums, about Webwise, using weasel worded logic to do so. Seems they only want happy news in their forums.

Ads behaving badly

So does it seem that even with paid services we are going to be flooded with ads behaviorally directed? We think so.

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One Comment

  1. EU centres out UK for privacy concerns over BT's Use of Phorm | Shulist Group Inc.:

    [...] had commented on this story before and it was really no surprise when BT continued to expand the mandate of Phorm after it’s [...]

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