Data Mining At Its Finest

Who needs companies to sell your personal information to corporations? Put it in the form of a social networking site and we’ll fall all over ourselves to throw them the information.

List your favorite books, movies, music. Then check out the ads.

Not only do we froth at the mouth to give them information to market to us, but we tell them how to better do it. I realize that as consumers, we do this on a daily basis by voting with our US American Money Dollars for what is popular, or remains so by buying or not. You’re telling them, “Yes! We absolutely agree that what you told us to buy is something we need. That Nike “swoosh” symbol is so very worth ____ many more hours I spent at work than those other shoes*. Because I love being at work so much, anyway. Have some more of my money, please! No, I insist!

*I admit, there are some examples where you pay for what you get. But to pay extra for something with some dumb graphic design on it, just because it has a certain graphic design on it, and many other people also have said design on some article of clothing or product somewhere on or near their person. Why is that? A sense of belonging? “Oh, hey! You also have this squiggly mark on something belonging to you! We are not so different, you and I. My life is less meaningless, and I feel like I have a place in the universe on this dumb spinning rock. Life is grand! Thank you, squiggly mark!”

Please do not misinterpret my attempt at witty sarcasm with bitterness.

I mentioned Sinatra in a status message, and now I am barraged by ads for his compilation cds. Also bands I’ve listed on my info page, writers that I have listed that I like. All of the surveys/quizzes/what have you tell you “access will let it pull your profile information, photos, your friends’ info, and other content that it requires to work” and have you accept. WARNING: We are trying to sell you things. We will know what you like, what your friends like, and how often you like it. Give us your damn money.

I am exaggerating.

A little.

It doesn’t really bother me all that much. Hell, if there are companies out there that can cater to my specific flavor of weirdness, by all means make it easier for me to find them, or for them to find me. Divine marketing; it was meant to be. We met through a friend, this messenger bag and I. I saw this shirt from across a crowded website, and as soon as I saw it, I knew.

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