Posts tagged advertising
Vanderbilt’s premise is: “We are strangers to our tastes.” He doesn’t mean that we don’t really like what we say we like. He means that we don’t know why. Our intuition that tastes are intuitive, that they are just “our tastes,” and spring from our own personal genome, has been disproved repeatedly by psychologists and market researchers. But where tastes do come from is extremely difficult to pin down. Taste is not congenital: we don’t inherit it. And it’s not consistent. We come to like things we thought we hated (or actually did hate), and we are very poor predictors of what we are likely to like in the future.
The Future of Advertising
Emotional manipulation is such a strangely intimate place to discover you’re the subject of surveiilance-cum-manipulation, that even your unguarded moments of sharing feelings are subject to someone trying to get something out of you. We want to call into account what makes this system of control possible, but if Cornell is any example of what to expect from the fallout, no one is going to be held accountable for companies like Facebook recklessly endangering users – yet again. For those of us observing this spectacle in a sort-of state of self-aware, displaced horror reserved for those moments when life and sci-fi dystopia cross shadows, it has never been more clear that Facebook’s ideas about organizing society are wholly broken.
More completely, they’re all mostly addressing their headgear with a sunny “OK Glass.” We are in the middle of a strange five-minute demo of Google’s already iconic head-mounted computing device, Glass, and the sensation is not one of empowerment, but of awkward disorientation mixed with racing curiousity. Five minutes, give or take. How to see the future in five minutes? For some, it’s trying to find pizza or barbecue. For others, it’s attempting to video someone else. For most, it’s a slightly zombifying experience, turning slowly, staring just above the horizon, or squinting at a clock floating in front of one eye. Some are talking to their Glass, giving it short commands. Others, like me, are finding the noise level of 50-odd people all muttering to the metal on their heads falling short of the promise, the magic.
What’s still unclear is whether the NSA is directly hacking Google or using some other way to track these cookies. But while the company is officially keeping quiet, the simple math of cookie tracking makes it likely that the NSA didn’t need any help from Google. Tracking cookies offers the NSA the perfect system for following suspects across the web: it’s pervasive, persistent, and for the most part, it’s still unencrypted. “It solves a bunch of tricky problems for bulk web surveillance that would otherwise be quite difficult,” says Jonathan Mayer, a fellow at Stanford’s Center for Internet and Society who worked with the Washington Post on the report. The right cookie will follow you as your phone moves from 3G to a coffee shop’s Wi-Fi network, and in many cases it’ll broadcast your unique ID in plain text.