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Disney bets big on visitor-tracking technology

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posted on Mar, 11 2014 @ 10:51 AM
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File this under a combination of helpful technology crossed with downright creepy big brother, in my opinion. The Magic Kingdom is adding a BIG dose of big bro' to the kettle.


Jason McInerney and his wife, Melissa, recently tapped their lunch orders onto a touchscreen at the entrance to the Be Our Guest restaurant at Florida's Walt Disney World Resort and were told to take any open seat. Moments later a food server appeared at their table with their croque-monsieur and carved turkey sandwiches.

Asks McInerney, a once-a-year visitor to Disney theme parks: "How did they know where we were sitting?"


Ahhh... The joys of technology, where any individual can be located to a specific table by anyone at the appropriate terminal to enter in the right question. Yeah...I see absolutely no potential for abuse or problems here. Heck no..... (/sarcasm)


The answer was on the electronic bands the couple wore on their wrists. That's the magic of the MyMagic+, Walt Disney's (DIS -0.65%) $1 billion experiment in crowd control, data collection, and wearable technology that could change the way people play -- and spend -- at the "Most Magical Place on Earth."


Disney takes to the big time, by the sound of it. Track everyone, everywhere, doing everything and in every way. Oh...goody.

They close the story with an appropriate line, I'd say.


Despite such grousing, hospitality experts say that the use of more monitoring technology is only a matter of time. Explains Accesso's Burnet: "Where Disney goes, other people follow."
Source

Indeed, they do. I hope Disney can TRACK the disgust and rejection of the % of the public who just won't stand for being tracked like animals in a zoo. I'm glad I saw Disneyworld and Disneyland both, one last time, over the past couple years and I had the chance to take my son as well. So..never returning to their parks won't be any loss. As they make changes like this? This is one customer who won't be returning. Ever.




posted on Mar, 11 2014 @ 11:12 AM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


I saw them testing the bracelets in december when i went.

And I got a flyer this week about the new tech.

My thoughts that it's not so bad.

I can see where it can come in handy for both the park and visitors.

A little creepier was when I last went to islands of adventure last month. Either they are using facial recognition or wifi tracking. There's an interactive fountain in the park. Which called me and my wife by name.

In any case. The usual disclaimer. If you don't like this tracking then don't go.



posted on Mar, 11 2014 @ 12:47 PM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


I see the conversion from theme park to mousauschwitz is on schedule.

I don't know what it is about Disneyland / world. They seem to be the Styrofoam cup of theme parks - they are just... there. I am waiting for the day when those tracking chips are placed in our food.


Fun Fact about Disney - (its been a while since I have seen the story)
When they were building the hall of Presidents Walt apparently invited a bunch of people to see the attraction (Animatronic Presidents).

During the show they made it to President Abraham Lincoln. While Abe Lincoln was talking one of the hydraulic hoses ruptured on the inside. The fluid started oozing out of the president, who now is stopped / lifeless on stage. Walt was a it mortified but could not understand the reaction from the group, who acted as if nothing occurred.

2 important results from the above incident -
* - Afterwards the hydraulic fluid was changed over to a dark dark liquid (black). The color in use at the time was Red.
* - Because of the red and Lincoln not moving, the people in the audience thought they were doing a reenactment of Lincolns assassination.
edit on 11-3-2014 by Xcathdra because: (no reason given)
edit on 11-3-2014 by Xcathdra because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 11 2014 @ 01:36 PM
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grey580
reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


I saw them testing the bracelets in december when i went.

And I got a flyer this week about the new tech.

My thoughts that it's not so bad.

I can see where it can come in handy for both the park and visitors.

A little creepier was when I last went to islands of adventure last month. Either they are using facial recognition or wifi tracking. There's an interactive fountain in the park. Which called me and my wife by name.

In any case. The usual disclaimer. If you don't like this tracking then don't go.


Yeah we have them. The only place the food to table tracking works is in that new place Be Our Guest. If you do not have the magic band they are testing they you get a light up rose that links to the order you placed in the computer to take to your table so they can find you. Works pretty well but, I do not expect them to expand that to other places where it would be less practicle.



posted on Mar, 11 2014 @ 06:24 PM
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reply to post by Xcathdra
 


I can just imagine it with Lincoln. We all saw the Lincoln show while at Disneyworld in 2010. It was incredible for how life-like it was and the black and white of old original versions of him weren't all that far off. What a time for a blown hydraulic hose. Oh...

Something occurred to me earlier. Once they have this working and perfected they can track everyone's position, right? Then they can add and adapt it to other things...like carts and security product tags on big stuff. Crime at Disney (already real low) would just about vanish in anything intentional. You could just hit some keys and see who was where when something occurred, within a foot. There's your man. lol.....

At least that'll be an upside when fully implemented.
edit on 11-3-2014 by Wrabbit2000 because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 12 2014 @ 05:43 AM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


There are a few occasions where I would not mind the tracking. Based on how big Disney theme parks are I could see the tag being used for groups / children. If a child gets lost in Disney there is no telling how long it might take to locate the kid.

The other would be a type of system that would allow groups to keep tabs on each other.



posted on Mar, 12 2014 @ 09:35 AM
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reply to post by Xcathdra
 


I'd first seen this presented a year or two back as a means of doing precisely that. A tool for elderly, young or otherwise "at risk" people for wandering off and becoming lost in a real bad way. THAT made perfect sense and I really applaud that effort and thinking.

To extend it for everyone and a property wide system at some point here...is creepy in a 1984 way I just can't go with, myself. It just reeks of 'we see you!' 24/7 and at all times. You KNOW Disney WILL use these position reports and activity records for marketing if NOTHING else. How long was each bracelet in such and such a store. How long at a specific display or did they even move toward a key display at all? How long in each type of ride line, and which rides to which tastes for stores and food?

Oh the market research power of this is just unlimited and staggering....and wrong, in my opinion. Another way to exploit their own customers.



posted on Mar, 12 2014 @ 09:38 AM
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grey580
If you don't like this tracking then don't go.


When it becomes mandatory for all citizens, they`ll say:

"If you don't like it, don't go outside"



posted on Mar, 12 2014 @ 11:23 AM
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Skyfloating

grey580
If you don't like this tracking then don't go.


When it becomes mandatory for all citizens, they`ll say:

"If you don't like it, don't go outside"


Why it already is. And we keep getting more info daily about the ways we are tracked.

But there is a difference, at least imo, between this program that you opt into and one that is done surreptitiously.



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 01:39 PM
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On tonight, live from 10PM Eastern time!

Show thread with listening information



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 02:12 PM
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Yeah.
It's called a mobile phone lol



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 08:21 PM
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I was able to find some additional information while out checking around for the radio segment and it adds a dimension of both creepy as well as really useful. The difference lay with intent and scale, I believe. In limited scale and narrow use? It can be good.

However, corporations rarely use small scale if benefit exists by going large. Some are known better than others for the scale at which they do things, and in relation to this threads original focus? Disney is a 14 Billion dollar empire. They've always worked on a 'Magic' scale at the 'Magic Kingdom. It's why they literally call their research and development people "Imagineers".


"MagicBands can also be encoded with all sorts of personal details, allowing for more personalized interaction with Disney employees.," notes the Times. "Before, the employee playing Cinderella could say hello only in a general way. Now — if parents opt in — hidden sensors will read MagicBand data, providing information needed for a personalized greeting: 'Hi, Angie,' the character might say without prompting. 'I understand it's your birthday.'"
USA Today

That article mentioned Great Wolf Resorts, a park that currently uses this and which shows some of the true potential.


Story Explorers employs 13.56 MHz PDC RFID wristbands, attached to stuffed toy animals and reader modules built into two dozen action-station kiosks, each consisting of a touch screen and computer. The game also utilizes software residing locally on each kiosk that reads and writes data to every tag, in order to maintain a record on the tag regarding which kiosks a particular child has visited. In that way, says Amanda Roark, Great Wolf Lodge's senior communications manager, each kiosk's software reads the tag's data and, based on the results, provides appropriate information on the kiosk screen, such as a storybook text and pictures. - See more at: www.rfidjournal.com...
Source: RFID Journal

That's a pretty neat use of it there. Disney's program is estimated pretty consistently across the articles as running 1 billion to fully roll out. I know inflation is rough...but 1 billion dollars buys a lot of bracelets but I'll bet, even more readers.



posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 08:32 PM
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Back in early February while on a business trip, I stayed at the Coronado Springs Resort in Disney. I wore/used one of these devices and found it extremely convenient. Unlock your door, pay for your meals, it all was just automatic.






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