Advertisements and the modern world

I will admit it, in regards to some things I am most certainly a sheep, however I am a sheep that is aware of his nature as a commodity in this digital age. We live in an increasingly interconnected world, it allows for the sharing of information at an almost scary pace, to share ideas and philosophies and even to connect with the people that we do not see every day. However everything has it’s price.

Social media is absolutely booming these days with the advent of the myspace, facebook and twitter and their unprecedented growth people add other people, things they are interested in and in my opinion an unholy number of mind numbingly useless apps / quizzes / tools / blatant attempts to steal your details. This massage surge has seen the introduction of online passports of the sites, more and more resources are allowing you to sign in with accounts from other resources such as news and facebook and even some other general sites whereas back in the old days we would have different logins for the various portals we chose to interact with.

Modern society seems to be based on the principles of “convenience” which is why we tend to happily flock towards things that make our lives easier such as bridged logins, however in my opinion it is an inherently bad idea.

Andrew Lewis (according to what I could find on google at any rate) said: “If you are not paying for it, you’re not the customer; you’re the product being sold” Truer words have never been spoken.

These days most people do not read terms of services that are attached to the things that we do online, we feed these sites our information and hope that they “play nice” However each time we install an app or do a quiz on facebook we are agreeing to allow the makers of that app to access our information (different apps have different levels of what you agree to), posts, friends, contact information, where we go (in the case of some smartphone apps) photos and the like.

Then we have shared logins, which basically means ok X news site, or tripadvisor or anything sure you can have all of my facebook details.

This is the reason why I still maintain separate logins for things. My facebook account is for facebook, my yahoo account is for yahoo (well and flikr), my msn account is for msn and Trip advisor well you get the picture now. That way I control what information of mine each separate service gets to subscribe to.

Some people may wonder what can be potentially seen as useless information about you could possibly be considered valuable, and it all boils down to the almighty dollar, pound sterling, euro or whatever currency that you subscribe to. Online advertising is a HUGE business, never before have companies had access to such wealths of information about potenital markets, and then with that information be able to custom tailor ads and who they get seen by.

In my case I do wonder how they come up with what adverts to display to me, 99.9% of the time what they present to me I am not remotely interested in, but they have proven that they are learning as once in a blue moon they do have something that I stop and go hmm at and perhaps look at.

A snapshot of the ads on my facebook page at this point in time.

What are you waiting for?
Lonely times are gone whether you’re looking for fun, dating or a long term relationship. Make a free and quick profile now.

What you think because I am single I am going to be desperate to sign up to some dating site I have never heard of in order to spend some of my hard earnt money on a bunch of chicks which are most likely paid in order for you to never get anywhere with? Yeah no thanks.

$9.99 Threadless T-shirts
Sale has been extended! Ends 23.3.

Well as a general rule I don’t wear T-Shirts often, I am more of a shirt or polo shirt kinda guy…

Perth Solar Sale
Be one of the first 50 people to register and pay your deposit on our solar open day to receive 2 VIP corporate hospitality tickets

Ok of all the ads currently on my page, this would be the most likely one that I would be interested in, as I have been considering a solar farm in the backyard to generate the household power needs. However good that deal may make itself out to be I wouldn’t be convinced as they need to cover their advertising costs somehow…

Meet Indonesian Singles
Indonesian dating and singles site. Don’t miss out. Join now!

At least it is only 2 ads tonight regarding me finding someone… I guess the algorithm goes joel = single + travels to indonesia fairly reguarly therefore give him an ad to meet singles in Indonesia. Again no thanks

HUGE SAVINGS! 90% OFF BRAND NEW Apple, Samsung, Panasonic, Sony, Xbox, Nintendo, Canon…Become a member today and receive 20 FREE Bids

Ok so let me get this straight, you want me to become a member in which you need to pay to be able to bid and although you advertise to not pay more than 10% of retail by the end of the auction the prices will be up at near retail anyway and you get a cut of my pay to bid… Again yeah no.

The NEWEST tower defense game on Facebook – Play Now!

Ok this one makes sense, there is 2 games that I play on facebook so advertise more. However you would think that they would be aware of the types of games I play (ie not tower defense) and advertise those to me.

It’s why I don’t google while signed into a google account, why allow them to collect more specific information about my searches and browsing history to better target ads (they can still do it based on your ip anyway)

Remember who you are and what you choose to share are yours to control and not our facebook / google overlords, also if you find ads that are no where near remotely interesting to you click them occasionally. They make you waste your time glancing at them it is only fair to make them pay for the privilege.

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