We all know Big Brother and Mark Zuckerman are watching us. We’ve noticed the ads running along the side of our Facebook page or Google account. It often seems someone is standing over my shoulder, watching me in my nightie picking my nose and reading what I’m writing.
It’s the lightening speed with which it happens that is so troubling. Here’s some examples:
1) After much research and Googling, I bought my oldest daughter a mattress on Amazon and had it delivered to her apartment in Boston. Within minutes I received an ad for luxury mattresses from Saatva. Apparently they thought the mattress I bought wasn’t good enough, although my daughter was thrilled.
2) I have had a few Moscow Mules in my day. I love the shiny copper mugs they are served in, so I post pictures on Instagram, which I sometimes share on Facebook. Months later JossandMain posted an ad for His & Hers copper mugs on sale for $45.95. They were saving the info on me. This chick drinks Moscow Mules. Put her in the file.
3) Then they started popping up all the time, posting ads for things like Polish pottery. What made them think I would like Polish pottery? Then I remembered something. Paranoia set in. Is Facebook so deep inside my laptop they found a reference to pottery on page 108 of my yet to be published third novel? But no, a friend had liked their page, so naturally I too might like Polish pottery. At least, I hope that was the logic behind posting that ad.
4) But what about the email I sent to a friend mentioning Xanax. How do you explain the ad that popped up within seconds? Are you feeling anxious?
5) And what about those older handsome men that keep popping up? Girlfriend Wanted. Date Mature Men. Thousands of men are looking for loving relationships and there is a high chance you will see a profile of someone you know.
This one didn’t have that little note about my friend So-and-So liking the page. Maybe Facebook has enough sense to keep that private. So come on, ‘fess up, which one of you is looking for a handsome older man? It’s okay, if I were single I might try it. I’ve seen a few guys on there who are worth a night at the movies. However, we all know Zuckerberg is not that ethical, and then I remember I wrote this, and I’m back to being paranoid. But I click on the ad because I want to know if it’s true. Is there someone on there I know? Don’t worry, I found you (and you know who you are) but I won’t tell anyone. (Kidding, just kidding.)
Today I’m more paranoid than ever, because yesterday I posted this on Facebook:
“My balls, I wouldn’t want anyone touching those. I would zip those up.” Tom Brady just said that at this afternoon’s press conference.
And this morning, I tweeted Joe Scarborough, who I normally can’t stand, thanking him for defending Tom Brady’s balls.
And I know they’re all in cahoots. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, so how do I explain this? Now that I have a laptop, my husband uses my desktop. He only uses it for typing invoices, and he doesn’t do that very well. We know about his Save vs. Save As problem, and this morning he needed help opening an attachment. After he was done I checked my email and social media sights. On Facebook, I saw an ad for this: 70 year old woman who looks 25. Was that directed at him or me? He has no social media accounts. It’s my Facebook page, but he’s the one using this computer 80% of the time. I click on the ad to see what they’re offering. I may need to buy this.
Please share your unsettling encounters with the Google et al below. Join the conversation. Bueller?…Bueller?…Bueller?