What 'Sex Tape' gets wrong about the cloud

It isn't as baffling as the movie's trailer implies

Published: July 17, 2014 11:45 AM
“Nobody understands the cloud, it’s a [expletive] mystery!”

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The premise of the new Cameron Diaz-Jason Segel film "Sex Tape" (opening July 18) is simple enough: A couple wants to amp up their romance, so they decide to shoot video of their bedroom antics on an iPad. Unbeknown to them, their racy video is synced to the cloud and shared with their family, friends, and even mailman via the iPads the couple had given as Christmas gifts. When Diaz and Segel realize what's happened, they begin a frantic quest to recover all the iPads.

What seems to be so hard for Diaz’s and Segel's characters to understand is actually quite simple: The cloud, as portrayed by Apple’s iCloud service in the trailer for "Sex Tape," is simply a way to store files online and share them with others. (There are more highly advanced applications of the cloud, such as managing vast databases and sequencing genomes, but these are generally used by companies and research institutions—not your everyday sex-tape makers.)

Now that we've cleared up that cloud confusion, what are the chances of something similar happening to you?

Slim to none.

If you buy an iPad for another person, that doesn't mean all your pictures, videos, and other personal content sync automatically to that iPad. The recipient of your gift would need to sign in with your Apple ID and have iCloud’s My Photo Stream feature turned on for her to see your personal content.

Another way to share your photos and videos would be through a shared photo stream, but you'd have to intentionally invite people to view your stream, and manually choose which photos and videos you would like to share.

In a nutshell, you pretty much have to want your content to be shared before it would happen.

Want to know more? Check our article on different types of cloud storage.

—Karim Lahlou

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