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Google and Mastercard Cut a Secret Ad Deal to Track Retail Sales

Not surprising, but a bit of a worry.
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-08-30/google-and-mastercard-cut-a-secret-ad-deal-to-track-retail-sales

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The ability to control our habits from buying to voting through mass data collection and recycling our habits into carefully constructed marketing puts a lie to the concept of free will, does it not? The word ‘manipulation’ is far more appropriate to ‘advertising’ or ‘news’ in lands where advertising (in whatever forms including news bias) reigns supreme.

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I agree,@PhilT, our ‘Free will’ is being more and more manipulated and constrained.
There was a book, many years ago, on Advertising, called ‘The Hidden Persuader’.
But now Marketing has developed into a monster looking into our spending habits in a way it has no right to.

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Beyond our spending habits is the political use of “marketing” to quietly evolve/change our beliefs and voting habits as was noted by @PhilT above . This is done by many who wish to have outcomes that suit their agenda whether it be industries, political parties, and/or individuals.

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The Cambridge Analytica thing showed that the genie is out of the bottle. The arts of deceit and manipulation have developed to the point that we can be targeted, almost to the individual level.

Trump was elected and Brexit won, largely by convincing people not to vote. Australia’s compulsory, preferential voting system is more robust but it’s far from immune. This sort of thing is more effective in the most open societies. Open democracies are in peril. How to safeguard them, I don’t know.

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