“Come and Get It… Everything is on sale!”
How often have you been suckered into this maelstrom of deception and foolery? Marketers get you into the store for a sale on an item and it’s sold out or discontinued. Didn’t you know that it’s one of the major devices of marketing? A car is advertised at a certain price in the paper and you go running only to find that the actual advertised unit is a clunker or a lemon. “It’s in the paper…so it must be true!” How many of you know people who live for “the sale?” Every time they see something advertised via the radio, TV, and the newspaper, they go running and convince others to do the same. They figure they’re getting a bargain, yes? In many cases it can a positive thing to purchase an item on sale. The item in question may be marked down from its original sale price…or being offered at the vendor’s purchase price. What is the reason for the bargain? It could be the item is taking up space for goods that have just come in and the storage space is needed. The item might not be a good seller. The item could have been bought in bulk and the vendor wishes to unload the excess after they have made their targeted amount of money. Whatever the reason – are you a sale junkie? Caveat Emptor!
Is the wisdom of the crowd the ignorance of the masses? Is the Internet really such a bad thing? Marketing and advertisement on the Web, in its conventional wisdom is not such a bad thing. Connecting populations is what the Internet is – productive to planet expansion and World Wide connectivity. The Internet of this century is chaotic and unregulated. Organically based – a borderless virtual entity that has grown based on U.S. Technology that allows user access to enormous amounts of information. An information network so great the media is caused to remain silent on the possibilities. The dark side has begun with the change to the Internet search applications.
Social networks, computer software developers, and e-commerce continually monitor information about users and their activity. This data is used to create files on Web searchers. Companies value these user profiles. They use the data to target consumers. The virtual shopping network feeds the sale for and of the real world products. This occupation eliminates or lessons the need of the human intervention of sales and/or selling. The practice replaces the supply chain, as we know it, such as the entities that gave power to the “industrial revolution.” Profiles of users who are deemed inevitable customers become a major asset to companies with goods to market and sell. The Web search function had morphed into an essential bait and catch tool from one of a useful user-friendly convenience. These siloed data of user profiles have become powerful assets for company owners to be bought and sold on “profile markets and identity exchanges,” says Stephen Saunders of InternetEvolution.com.
Many social networks are pioneers in profiling and search inversion. This practice makes it easy for similar entities to follow their lead. Web companies owning servers store user information. These data silos are called into play when owners decide to participate in profiling user information - any network provider type of data material. It’s perfectly legal for them to do so…at present.
The Internet is an entity that no one, no company or government can control.
How can users protect their privacy? Don’t use the Internet! In today’s society – it’s not practical. The Internet has changed on surveillance networks. Devices connected to the Web, “whose function is to observe users via sensors, probes, spy-ware, and cameras outnumber devices users employ to view Internet content,” concurs Saunders. “The Internet is watching you!”
The World Wide Web (Internet) has changed from its user-friendly oriented tool into a sophisticated targeting tool for companies selling goods and/or services to bait and catch sucker system. Companies only wish to market their wares to consumers. The Net is also used for and by the government to keep track of its citizens – law enforcement to track illegal activity by users.
The Net has become a place where “the user has now become the used!” Is Big Brother here to stay? Is he/it watching you? Most assuredly…it is.
Now what’s on sale today?
Til next Time…
Stephen Saunders, “Internet Evolution,” Information Week, 6.21.10, pg.13, Super Highway to Hell
Marketing and Management Studies, CCP Management 2007