You should not see this settings pane as an attempt to be more open and transparent about the data Apple collects, which is what BuzzFeed presents it as. That is just not what it is.
Frequent Locations is a standalone feature that is new to iOS 7. It can be enabled and disabled at will; the user is prompted on first launch too. If enabled, Apple uses this log to show you useful contextual information in the Today tab of Notification Center.
If disabled, this breadcrumb trail is never collected and the log in Settings would be empty. Frequent Locations is completely separate and distinct from normal Location Services.
Apple has not and will not track your location without your consent, ever.