The Manchurian Consumer

A new book, Digital Destiny, accuses the ad industry of “brandwashing” America and warns of advertisers working behind the scenes to gut consumer’s online privacy. Ad Age writes:

    “While advertisers and their websites say they don’t collect “personally identifiable information” without consent, their merging of online and offline information has come pretty close, Mr. Chester maintains, warning especially of personally tailored TV commercials.

    “No matter what they claim, the cable and satellite industries are striving to perfect their ability to target individuals,” he writes.”

Wait a second, isn’t one of the worst things about advertising that it’s too impersonal and geared towards the lowest common denominator? We’re not sure we wouldn’t mind a personalized commercial. Unless they superimposed our Mom’s head on the spokesmodel or something. Now that would be freaky. And move a lot of product. — BEN POPKEN

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