After a few initial hiccups, Jay-Z’s new album Magna Carta Holy Grail was released this week by way of an exclusive app for Samsung customers. But Adrian Chen over at Gawker points out that the app itself is a massive data mining opportunity:
Occupy-supporting Atlanta rapper Killer Mike noted on Twitter yesterday that when he tried to download the Magna Carta app—which has racked up more than a half million downloads, according to Billboard—it requested some oddly intrusive permissions from your Android phone. Why does Jay-Z need your GPS location? Is he going to cruise by on a platinum-coated jet ski, personally chucking out copies of the album to people who downloaded the app?
During his big media splash before the album’s released, the business savvy rapper said that his unconventional deal with Samsung was motivated in part by his belief that the Internet is the “wild, wild West” and that we — users — have a chance to rewrite the rules. I guess all of that is true except when it comes to your privacy.