Ah, isn't it sad?
Facebook is running full-page ads in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Washington Post today stating that Apple's privacy permissions overhaul in iOS 14 will be allegedly "devastating to small businesses." The antisocial network has also gone as far as creating a mini-site to campaign for the claimed benefits of …
Nearly fell off my chair laughing. Facebook - personalized advertising? What a joke. While Facebook knows very little about me, it does know my approximate age (70) and my gender (male). So why do I get adverts (occasionally sneaking past my adblocker) for Botox treatment for my lips? Is there something about my 70 year old peers I don't know about?
I would guess that that Facebook gets paid by the Botox clinics for every view they generate. So they use whatever excuse they can generate to deliver more ads. In this case by overlooking your age and gender. If they need any excuse at all, it might be that more people than average in your postal code go for the pouty look.
The people that are being taken to the cleaners are the advertisers.
I see very few ads on FB, but they've recently taken to inserting video ads into the various inline videos that appear in my feed (presumably with the permission of the authors of the videos, as they're typically trying to monetise). No real objection on my part beyond them not respecting the video audio settings and just blast out at max volume - IIRC you're not allowed to do that on TV and it's very annoying when you've got things set on quiet (headphones or speakers) and then have to reach for the mute button, or yank the headphones off (I wonder if there's a possible issue with being able to damage hearing with this configuration?)
Facebook is running full-page ads in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Washington Post today stating that Apple's privacy permissions overhaul in iOS 14 will be allegedly "devastating to small businesses."
Don't know that many truly small businesses "thrive" on targeted ads after paying the vig to Zuck. But I am sure that the necessity to opt-in to Zuck's and others' incessant tracking will be a boon to the
product...er, targets...er, (dammit!) consumers whose desired "user experience" does not include being marketed at 24/7.
I do tend to avoid doing anything to attract so-called targetted advertising, including using blockers where appropriate (ie almost everywhere!!), but the only targetted adverts that might be called "local" that I recall ever seeing have been of two types. The ones which add some random nearby town into a national or international advert for a product that isn't actually supplied locally, or the "There are 25 women in $town looking for a good time" type of ads. I don't think I've ever seen actual local adverts for local businesses just happen to appear on some web page due to any form of targetting.
The ones which add some random nearby town into a national or international advert for a product that isn't actually supplied locally, or the "There are 25 women in $town looking for a good time" type of ads.
I get those too, except they're not even local. I've had a static IP for years, yet these adverts always seem to be offering me services in either North London, or Durham. And I'm not driving that far for a good time. Or an eye test. Wait, maybe Cummings is on the same ISP as me.
> I don't think I've ever seen actual local adverts for local businesses
Nobody has ever seen any real local adverts for local businesses, AFAIK anywhere in the world. Despite localization being very easy to target: No matter if your
prey target doesn't fit the usual targeting "assumptions" on sex, gender, interests, needs, the food outlet down his/her/its street will always be relevant, everybody needs to eat.
"Targeted advertising" is just a scam, it's just an excuse to sell ad space for more money ("Yes, we're more expensive, but then again your product will reach those who really want it, no waste.").
Since Facebook's misinformation was published in American newspaper, nobody will notice because all the news is misinformation too. The local news, the cable news, the newspapers -- all of them, without exception, are full of misinformation and outright lies.
To me, the real issue is how these people can deceive others so much and then sleep well at night. If I lied and deceived others as much as the news media, and now Facebook, does, then my conscience would tear me up every single night.
And I don't buy their small business argument anyway. A restaurant doesn't need to use Facebook's exabytes of personal information to effectively advertise. Typically they'll want to run ads using basic stuff like home address, age range, and marital status: who is close enough to us to visit, who is in the age range and marital/kid status that is our target demo. All publicly available information that Facebook doesn't need a massive tracking operation to utilize. They don't care if someone is a member of QAnon groups or is a Bernie bro, if they watch anime or true crime on Netflix, etc.
Exactly what small businesses need to know which posts someone interacts with, what "interests" they have selected, location info stolen from their photographs, what web sites they click on, what keywords they use their status updates and forth. Not one I ever want to do business, that's who!
At least in the US if you google a person's name you can find links to places like instantcheckmate.com, nuwber.com etc. that give you some information about the person like their age, address, and phone number. A lot of government records for stuff like home ownership, car registration, voter registration and so forth is public record.
Those public records aren't made easily accessible since every state/county does this differently but companies will take the time to set up something to scrape that info, then make some information available to people googling. They use it as a come on to charge you some money for a "background check" into that person which will use other public information like arrest records, court records and so forth.
If you have a really common name like "John Smith" and you can't narrow the location of that person down beyond "they live in the Chicago area" you probably can't find them, but for most people you can find out where they live along with some past addresses for free, and more if you pay.
I see that and switch into alias mode.
I reply as if I was a 38-24-36 Blonde, 24 and into threesomes or stuff like that. Naturally, I use a throw away email and the wrong phone number (using a non existant area code does the job).
I rarely even think about using that site/service/restaurant etc ever again. I'll also leave a comment to that effect after the fact.
If they want all this stuff they really can't expect people to be honest. Just asking for the minimum will probably get the most accurate set of responses. Beyond that and there is some fun to be had...
One day... perhaps... they will see that asking for even more invasive data is self defeating.
As for Apple, keep on going. Anything that gets Zuckface in a tizzy can't be all bad.
"a 38-24-36 Blonde, 24 and into threesomes"
That shows clearly and beyond all doubt that you're a male! That kind of creatures only exist in male fantasies.
Targeting verdict: "male, straight, horny", cue ads for escort services and little blue pills...
If they care about small business then why don't they make organic content trending work again rather than limiting it forcing people to pay. Heck it may even have the side effect of cleaning up the absolute d\trash dump that Facebook has become.
Or maybe I do just need to put $250 into Netflix shares and earn an income so I can work less....... Heck lets go all out and put in $500 so I can have that same supercar in the add.
"benefits of personalized advertising"
What benefits? Let's see: telling me where I can buy more of something I've just bought? Nope. Telling me about suppliers I have used? Nope. Telling me about stuff I have already looked like and decided not to buy? Nope. Telling me about stuff a bit like any of the above but not actually like any of them at all? Nope. Telling me that People in (close geographical location) are going mad for (dumb item or product that is so shit it can't sell on its own merit)? Nope.
It goes on and on.
Personalised ads are an utter irrelevance.
"benefits of personalized advertising"
What benefits? Let's see: telling me where I can buy more of something I've just bought? .... Telling me about suppliers I have used?
You need to ask "Benefits to whom?"
It may not benefit the advertiser. It does, however, benefit the advertising industry that sold the ad to the advertisers.
What's mere, the advertising industry most definitely doean't want to know you already bought that or used that supplier. They want to be in a position of being able to prove they don't know it. If anyone should ever turn round and accuse those selling such advertising as being fraudulent they want plausible deniability.
> telling me where I can buy more of something I've just bought?
I bought a new car last year (I like compacts, and make them last for at least 5 years before considering changing), and receive spam from the dealer every two weeks with new, can't-miss offers of cars from the same dealership. Can't be more targeted than this. I talked to the dealers' manager about how irritating and pointless that is, and he sheepishly mumbled something about "the central office does the marketing". I decided to block it for the next four years, just in case.
Since I am in extended rant mode, what about ads like "this is the secret that doctors don't want you to know" and similar, that combines false advertisement, clickbaiting and spam in one convenient package?
I consider myself relatively immune to advertising - it's vanishingly rare that I'll actually click on an advert - but that's because I'm a stubborn as a mule old(ish) fart these days and I already know what I like and what I don't like, so advertising has little impact on me. Nonetheless, I'm as happy as happy can be that Apple wants to stymie the incessant vacuuming up of personal data by organisations such as Facebook. Cambridge Analytica showed just how, in unscrupulous hands, this sort of data can be used to manipulate people when you know exactly who it is that you’re manipulating. Apple, while very (VERY!) good at making money, does so the old fashioned way: by making products and linked services that are good enough to promote brand loyalty (or at least tie-in). They don’t need to manipulate people into buying stuff. You might say they’re actually a very old fashioned sort of company at least as far as ethical behaviour is concerned. I suspect Facebook's ad may turn out to be more of a Facepalm.
Exactly the kind of punter the advertising industry wants the mugs to believe they should love.
For avoidance of doubt "mugs" refers to advertisers. They are the sole market to whom the advertising industry sells and the only products the advertising industry sells are advertising and
valueprice-added services such as targeting that goes with the advertising.
> I consider myself relatively immune to advertising
Most people says the same and it's an argument often heard. That's because people don't know how ads and brand awareness work on our subconscious. Once an ads has flashed by your eyes, or has been heard, a little something remains and we're quite helpless against it. After that, clicking through is just an occational bonus for the advertisers.
After buying a single item of clothing for my wife I started getting targeted adverts for similar things. I found that once you click through a number of these then the algorithm thinks you are interested in such stuff. I now find it much better to look at page filled of women in slightly scanty clothing that the normal "boys toys" crap I would otherwise get - I have had a beard for 40+ years, why would you be trying to sell me a 7 blade razor?
An advertising company whose business model is based entirely on cynically breaching citizens' privacy by taking advantage of other companies' lack of action to protect it, is whining because another company, whatever their other faults, is finally taking steps to protect that privacy.
Fuckerberg's arrogance is breathtaking.
The icon indicates what should be done to Facebook.
Couple ousf points re FB
1. Their ads provide a dreadful ROI, no idea why people use them.
2. If you must use it, and there are some interesting groups available, use a burner email and make all your personal data ridiculously inaccurate.
3. Use a tight browser, FB hates Duckduckgo, Firefox do a decent job of blocking social trackers.
And then there is Google - far more insidious than FB.
> 1. Their ads provide a dreadful ROI, no idea why people use them.
I'd guess there's a bit of "we need to advertise because the competition is doing it!" mentality -- perhaps one bright, young, relentlessly perky graduate from a marketing school "consulted" on those small companies on how they could increase profit?
"Their ads provide a dreadful ROI, no idea why people use them."
There are two answers to your musing.
1.. The advertising industry is very good at selling. What they sell is advertising to advertisers.
2. They have willing accomplices in their market place. The marketing departments in their customer base have a direct interest in placing advertising, it's their living and their departmental budget. The advertising industry will feed them with metrics to let them show how well they're doing. Such metrics will never, of course, show how much money has been wasted targeting those who've already made a one-off purchase of the product or who are so pissed off by the adverts that they'll go to some lengths to avoid that advertiser.
Sadly most people don't know, don't care or both, and the inhabitants of this comments page are not good examples of wider humanity. Yes, I have an in-home DNS server blackholing FB, WhatApp & Instagram requests for almost all devices and browser adblockers on top of that but that's *really* not normal.
Until small organisations stop using it a the primary method of comms it's just going to be there. Just for my kids' school there are three separate "official" FB groups as a primary method of communication with parents, and god knows how many WhatsApp groups on top of that.
We'll see what, if anything, falls out of the US anti-trust suit.
Facebook's targeted ads regularly provide amusement. I liked a comment by my nephew where he was discussing racial differences and ended with something along the lines of "we all bleed the same colour of blood" which resulted in an ad from a blood donor clinic in my feed. I posted a 20-year-old photo of my son when he was 6 and promptly got an ad for a Montessori pre-school. The most bizarre ad came after I was looking at hiking boots on a local outdoor store's website, which for some reason resulted in the appearance in my feed of a product called "Go Girl - Pink", a device that allows women to pee standing up - interesting, but not so a pressing need.