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Privacy and Marketing – A Blanket Statement

Targeted Marketing

An “RD rant” about the ever-present and overwhelming amount of targeted marketing on electronic entertainment media such as cable TV, and SPAM email sent to me on my computer.

I would disconnect my cable TV if it were not for my spouse who somehow can tolerate the constant barrage of all the things that must be purchased to improve our lives.

I am sooo tempted to change my email address and “go dark” except for my closest and most trusted friends. All two of them… Ha!

I realize marketing is a necessary evil in a consumer driven Capitalist society.

70 years ago, the popular media was the newspaper. It was the advertising that made the publication of a tangible printed paper a good business. The subscription was only for the delivery. It never paid for the publication.

The individual reader could not be identified and tracked. What was read on a page was private. It might never be read and just used to wrap the garbage. Ha!

Magazines are a form of improved targeted marketing as most magazines cater to specific interest. If you are selling yarn, a magazine targeted to knitters is a better investment than placing the same advertisement in a general newspaper.

The number of subscriptions was the proof to advertisers how many readers they would reach in a geographical region. But not the exact reader identity.

The mailing list brings targeted marketing identification closer with a name and address or OCCUPANT, but targeting is dependent on how the list was created and sorted.

Electronic media is far different. “Mailing Lists” now contain personal and private information for sorting.

The Invasion of Privacy

Today the individual reader view habits are tracked and messages (marketing) has become far more targeted to personal interest.

Cable TV is a two-way service and subscriber viewing habits are recorded for targeted marking. Age group, sexual preference, viewing hours, most viewed content. They also know your subscriber name and location. ONE DOES NOT VIEW CABLE TV IN PRIVATE.

The same is true for computer browsing. Nothing done on the internet happens in private. Unless you encrypt your email, it too, becomes a public record. I.E. It’s written into Google’s agreement

The USA government (and others) most likely have a back-door key for all standard encryption codes. Unless you are capable of producing your own encryption, trust no-one.

Private preference is being data-mined and sold to the highest bidder. Probably ANY bidder…

We are being brainwashed by Liberals to believe privacy and secrets are abhorrent to the good of society (and targeted marketing). Fear-mongering conspiracy and cover-ups is the usual ploy. It’s true when considering an enemy. But the problem becomes determining who that enemy may be.

Innocent until proven guilty is (supposed to be) the cornerstone of USA society.

Privacy shields both the guilty and the innocent. (And blocks targeted marketing.) One binary choice is to honor privacy or destroy it. But absolutes are never the answer.

The struggle with the balance is what I believe must be the constant effort of society. Yeah, the good old “checks and balances” system.

The extremists fearing or destroying privacy are the fringe on the blanket. The fringe is noticed and provides a measure of balance and identification. The main purpose of a blanket is to provide comfort and warmth. If it becomes all fringe, its intrinsic value is gone. Think about that.

Urban Drone Delivery Systems?

I am certain that widespread urban and suburban “Drone Package Delivery” is a system that will never be implemented. It is an urban legend/myth that is perpetuated only for its publicity factor.

Technically, it is possible. So is the flying car. They are both in the same category. Technically possible, feasibly impossible.

Imagine a kid running out the front door, smacking into a drone hovering a few feet off the ground with sharp knife blades at eye level spinning at 20,000 RPM. (The propeller lift system)

It is also (at present) a one package per trip system. Drone size is dictated and limited by fixed and absolute aerodynamic and power requirement factors as well as the residential environment of this type of delivery.  All powered helicopter type flying devices are inherently energy inefficient. That creates a totally non cost-effective system. The required infrastructure of maintenance, control, crash recovery, liability, obstacle avoidance, anti-drone gunfire; just the things I can think of in just a few seconds; says it is totally un-doable at the scale being imagined.

The flying airspace is not a free environment. The FAA (et al) are going “bonkers” over managing a safe flying device system of control and drone management with today’s urban air traffic at 400 feet and higher. Delivery drones require total air space management down to ground level, everywhere.

 It can work in very controlled demonstrations and closed system special environments. It’s the “golly-gee!” factor that publicists love. The ones who get paid by the column inch doing tech and pseudoscience propaganda they can push to the naïve general public.

Remember the old (supposed) Postal Delivery moto? “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.”  This is NOT the official US Postal System moto but think what these conditions do to any free flying (drone) activity.

No doubt drones are here. I have two. But they cannot and will never replace the “at the doorstep”, human presence home package delivery system.

Then consider: What is the point? Replace the human delivery person? Reduce delivery costs? Faster delivery?

For me, next day free delivery is unbelievable and probably not even necessary. It’s here now. A drone will make it better. Nope.

There will certainly be special situations where this technology is deployed. I say it will never be a general purpose and widespread home package delivery system.

I am sure there are many special situations where drone delivery can be fully justified. I invite replies if you can dream them up for me.

 

Stealthy Prime Delivery

A strange thing happened with a recent order of coffee from Amazon Prime. Invisible delivery.

As I always do, I placed a “next day” (for Friday) Prime order for my usual 100 count, box of “coffee pods” for my Kuerig K-Cup brewer.

I was down to a two-day supply about 5 K-Cups. No problem as delivery here in the Dallas area is very fast.

The order was processed very quickly. As usual, I started getting delivery updates via text message which again was absolutely normal. Text messages are an opt-in feature for prime members. Sometimes, it seems like an overkill of tracking. But it has become the expected […] Continue reading » Stealthy Prime Delivery

Mama and Ducklings in the Sky

Not actually in the sky, but it looks that way. We had a very heavy rain in the morning. Not a lightning and thunder, but a good hard rain.  The lake actually flooded and overflowed the banks. It was temporary and in less than an hour the lake was back to normal height. 

The day became very bright and clear and you can see the clouds that remained. I went to the edge of the lake to survey what the flooding may have done. Nothing of importance.

But mama duck brought her 5 ducklings over to introduce them to me. I assume she thought I was going […] Continue reading » Mama and Ducklings in the Sky

A “Small” iPhone Update

iPhone 4S

This iPhone 4S is again running at full charge. It’s now had its second battery transplant. Presently on its third battery since new in October 2011. Not too shabby for an almost eight-year-old phone.

The battery cost is between $10.00 to $15.00 depending on the tools ordered with the battery. Micro-drivers are necessary as well as good eyes and steady hands. Both of those are starting to run out on me, just like the old batteries. Ha!

That cost and a little effort sure beats the heck out of a large new phone that I don’t want or need. The new phones are like carrying around […] Continue reading » A “Small” iPhone Update