How do they know?

With the rise of artificial intelligence and the complexity of machines, companies’ ability to customize ads and content to you as an individual can be a scary thing. 

Goodreads and Amazon are two of many who use algorithms and machines to map what you would like to read next. I buy my text books on Amazon and my front page is always full of business books about accounting and strategic marketing. They know which books I need before I know myself. This is our present and it will only get more tailored, more advanced in the future. The amount of information they have about our individual habits is beyond our imagination, and the more data they gather, the more accurate predictions and offers will be.

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How fascinating is that? As scary and creepy as it may seem, the capabilities of technology are unfathomably powerful and impressive. As someone who works in digital marketing, and in the IT industry at that, it is clear this is an area where the line of morality is becoming blurred and I, therefore, cannot wait to see where this will take us.

Data is the future and as an individual I can see how quickly data about me is collected, added, filtered and applied to push, or pull me, however you may see it, towards things I’m interested in. Paid media adverts push me towards a tipping point, they persuade me even if it doesn’t feel like it. I see audible ads everywhere, I see the tops I’ve been adding to my wishlist on my social media timelines, I get recommended books based on articles I’ve read at work.

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Overall, it does help me find books more easily, I am directed to services I didn’t know existed, services I didn’t know I needed and that has saved me a lot of time. I love research, I love information and having relevant, timely information sent to me is not something I’m complaining about. I’m fascinated and intimidated at the same time, as we should all be.

 

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