Sunday, December 15, 2013

Online assignment 4/5_Dobbs

     I thought this was a very interesting assignment. I did not even know we could do such things as find out what information certain websites have about us and about our usage on the Internet. The information Facebook had from me was not at all surprising because all of that stuff has been on my Facebook page one time or another. Looking through all of the information was a bit entertaining and was a little "blast from the past" because I have had a Facebook since 7th grade. The information that was a bit surprising was all of the ad information they had. the number of different things to advertise about was outrageous. I never really pay any attention to the ads on Facebook, but it is astonishing knowing how many different ads I have seen. Looking through all of the ads makes sense, however, because I am interested in almost every one of the things that has been advertised. Even new things that just came out a few days ago, Beyoncé's new album for example, has apparently been advertised to me.  This impressed me because they knew that I would be interested in it based on things I have looked at in the past or my related interests. Another thing that surprised me about my Facebook information is that they had my Wiscmail account and I do not ever remember entering that in my information anywhere and do not know how they would have gotten that information.
     As for Google, I had no idea what to expect from this site. The information they had on me as far as my age and gender were accurate, but I do have a Google account so I do not know if they just used that information or not. What they had on me for the language part was also interesting because it shows English and 1 other for me, which is Spanish. This is interesting because I am in a Spanish class currently and use the google translate a lot from English to Spanish or visa versa and never knew that google picked up on that kind of stuff. As far as the interests Google has pegged for me in the ads on Google column, they did not quite suit me. They chose banking, pet food and supplies, recording industry, and reggaeton for me. I feel that I do not particularly search things that fit these topics very often. As for the the other Google ads across the web section, they offered a more accurate selection of my interests. They provided things such as movies, fitness, college and universities, and other things that I find myself involved in. How they received this information is a bit disturbing, and once it is brought to your attention, the whole idea of this is troubling.
     I think all of this shows just how advanced our digital society is getting and how it is forcing ad agencies and websites to do these sorts of things because not as many read the newspaper or buy magazines anymore and it is not as easy for advertisements to be paid attention to. That is why they are resulting to more targeting tactics like the ones we see in this exercise.

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