I’ve read the memes and I’ve heard the jokes about “big brother” and how he is ever vigilant in watching what everyone does. However, I’ve never really experienced it until this week. Oh, sure, I’ve been known to look at “must haves” on Amazon or Etsy and then suddenly, up pops an ad for the very same thing on my Facebook feed. I think everyone who spends any amount of time online has faced that disturbing scenario. But … to ramp up the surreal nature of targeted ads, not to mention creep factor, “big brother” upped the ante this week.
My daughter and I were talking … TALKING … about mochi ice-cream (a yummy Japanese ice cream confection made with a traditional mochi outer-layer) in the grocery store as we stood in front of the refrigerated section staring at said product. I’ll admit, we discussed the topic at length, comparing flavors, deciding which was our favorite from past forays into the mochi dessert menus at various Japanese steakhouses, and waffling back and forth as to whether we should buy some now. Not being telepathic, our conversations were verbal. I know that may seem like an odd distinction to make, but it’s important for me that you know that, because I’m convinced it plays into what happened next.
Our phones were off as they dwelled deep within our pockets … there wasn’t a computer to be seen … I didn’t catch sight of a grocery clerk with a clipboard taking notes or a men-in-black representative lurking about, yet the next day, what pops up on my Facebook feed? You guessed it. An ad for mochi ice-cream. And not just ANY mochi ice cream – but the very same brand and two flavors we were looking at in the grocery store.
You tell me. WTF?
You didn’t ask the store to show you where their monitoring cameras are located? If they have computer based merchandise control they have internet link and cameras surely conveyed image and sound into the wide world of connectivity that lets Russia and who know whom else access everything about everybody.
That is a real thing that I’ve heard from a lot of people. Terrifying in every way possible. It happened to my daughter, my grandson and several other people I know. Freaking horrifying.
That happened to my Mum. Except she was talking to someone with her phone off and when she went on the phone to Google some things on the internet and the ads things on the side. They started to come up with the items from the store she had been talking about. Even though she had never actually looked up the store before!
Really creepy. Our phons are listening to us and giving information to sellers. Scary, but it’s actually real.
So spooky, Wendy.
That was spooky. Maybe your phones microphone was somehow “On” even though you weren’t talking on a phone call? If not that, then I don’t know. (insert Twilight Zone music here).