Facebook reading our minds?

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spartanap
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Facebook reading our minds?

Post by spartanap »

I'm not on Facebook but my wife is. Tonight, we were at a local restaurant. We had an appetizer that was so good that we talked about looking for a recipe in order to fix it at home. A few minutes ago, she showed me her Facebook feed. On it was a video showing how to make the dish we had talked about earlier in the evening. Prior to this, she had not googled a recipe, talked to anyone about it, or taken a picture of the dish while at the restaurant. I understand that FB knows where we go, but how can they find out what we ordered?

I might be showing my total lack of knowledge in this area but...how can this happen?

Stuff like this is why I'm not on Facebook. :D
buhlaxtus
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by buhlaxtus »

Facebook knew where you were, and it's a favorite dish of everybody :) My guess anyway.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by jebmke »

buhlaxtus wrote: Mon Jun 24, 2019 10:26 pm Facebook knew where you were, and it's a favorite dish of everybody :) My guess anyway.
Probably right. They took their best shot with the data and got a hit. Google does this all the time. I often get pop ups from Android "how did you like xyz park" if I have driven very close to xzy park with location on. It is a bit of a pain; fortunately I normally have location off and probably half the time I am out of the house I don't even take my phone with me. So far, I haven't gotten "How did you like your desk drawer."
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JoMoney
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by JoMoney »

They didn't have to "read your mind", you said you talked about looking for a recipe.
If you have a smart-phone with the Facebook app, they very well could be listening to you and offering suggestions based on that. They're still working on the mind reading functionality, which is more complicated than the mind control (or at least operant conditioning) that they're pretty good at.
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buhlaxtus
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by buhlaxtus »

:) https://www.vox.com/the-goods/2018/12/2 ... tagram-ads

... with a nod to the naked links policy, this is a nice fluff piece on the topic.

"But in call after call, Goldman and Vogt reasoned their way through listeners’ stories, explaining how location tracking and social connections and other predictable elements of their personality and shopping history could explain the bizarre ads. Hardly anyone believed them."
Last edited by buhlaxtus on Tue Jun 25, 2019 7:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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F150HD
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by F150HD »

not surprising. On Android, FB messenger reads and scans all of your texts. It's like giving them your personal diary. Many folks install apps not reading the permissions and realizing how much privacy they are giving up.

Google tracks you via phone even when its in airplane mode.
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Sandtrap
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by Sandtrap »

That's nothing.
My DW's been reading my mind for nearly 40 years. :shock:
She'll even tell me what I'm thinking before I think it. :shock:
Facebook could learn a thing or two.
j
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Iridium
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by Iridium »

JoMoney wrote: Mon Jun 24, 2019 10:39 pm If you have a smart-phone with the Facebook app, they very well could be listening to you and offering suggestions based on that.
Per buhlaxtus's link, listening to your conversations would be quite impractical.

The explanation is probably far more pedestrian. You visited a restaurant that apparently makes an appetizer so extraordinarily good that you wanted to look up the recipe. There is a decent chance you aren't the first folks to have looked up that recipe after visiting that restaurant, apparently, it is just that good. Of the hundreds of guesses that Facebook makes, it finally got one right. You just never really noticed all the times it totally screws up its guesses because you simply don't notice them. Heck, Facebook might have been able to improve its odds by having some understanding of the types of dishes that typically interest your wife.


If I was to go with a creepy theory, I would say instead of listening to you, I would rather accuse Facebook of knowing because it had influenced your choice of appetizer. If Facebook had a way of knowing your wife was about to visit the restaurant, then perhaps it had already been filling her feed with posts on the appetizer; at the time, it would have been seen as noise, but once the menu was in front of her, that item would have stood out subconsciously as something familiar, even though she had no conscious experience with it. The perfect combination of familiar and exotic that has an irresistible appeal.
anoop
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by anoop »

That stuff never happens on my iPhone because I do t have Facebook and I have tracking turned off. On the other hand, if I discussing buying anything from ladders to air filters with my sister, she will immediately see ads for whatever we discussed. It’s not like we were in a ladder store or filter store when having that discussion — it was always at home. She is on android and has Facebook.

So yes, the phone is listening. There is no other explanation.
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ResearchMed
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by ResearchMed »

Iridium wrote: Tue Jun 25, 2019 12:06 am
JoMoney wrote: Mon Jun 24, 2019 10:39 pm If you have a smart-phone with the Facebook app, they very well could be listening to you and offering suggestions based on that.
Per buhlaxtus's link, listening to your conversations would be quite impractical.

The explanation is probably far more pedestrian. You visited a restaurant that apparently makes an appetizer so extraordinarily good that you wanted to look up the recipe. There is a decent chance you aren't the first folks to have looked up that recipe after visiting that restaurant, apparently, it is just that good. Of the hundreds of guesses that Facebook makes, it finally got one right. You just never really noticed all the times it totally screws up its guesses because you simply don't notice them. Heck, Facebook might have been able to improve its odds by having some understanding of the types of dishes that typically interest your wife.


If I was to go with a creepy theory, I would say instead of listening to you, I would rather accuse Facebook of knowing because it had influenced your choice of appetizer. If Facebook had a way of knowing your wife was about to visit the restaurant, then perhaps it had already been filling her feed with posts on the appetizer; at the time, it would have been seen as noise, but once the menu was in front of her, that item would have stood out subconsciously as something familiar, even though she had no conscious experience with it. The perfect combination of familiar and exotic that has an irresistible appeal.
For just a slightly higher "creepiness" score, how about if FB pre-posted those ads, but subliminally?
I wouldn't put it past them already.

And... it's "all of the creepiness/intrusions/etc." that are the reasons why I'm not on FB.

DH has a FB account he keeps "private" that he shares with a just a few friends. I'm not at all convinced that FB's "private" is even vaguely near most definitions. FB isn't the paragon of virtue and full disclosure, or not until they are "caught"... and even then, it seems to involve the minimal adjustment they can get away with, until "caught" again. :annoyed

Question: Does browsing with Chrome's "incognito" mode help with this kind of thing?
I'm not quite sure what "incognito" does/doesn't "help" with, or how well it works.

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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by livesoft »

Sandtrap wrote: Mon Jun 24, 2019 10:48 pm That's nothing.
My DW's been reading my mind for nearly 40 years. :shock:
She'll even tell me what I'm thinking before I think it. :shock:
Facebook could learn a thing or two.
j
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JoeRetire
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by JoeRetire »

spartanap wrote: Mon Jun 24, 2019 10:22 pm I might be showing my total lack of knowledge in this area but...how can this happen?
Your wife should turn the "read my mind" setting to Off.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by JoeRetire »

ResearchMed wrote: Tue Jun 25, 2019 4:40 am Question: Does browsing with Chrome's "incognito" mode help with this kind of thing?
I'm not quite sure what "incognito" does/doesn't "help" with, or how well it works.
https://support.google.com/chrome/searc ... to+mode+do
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mancich
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by mancich »

This does not answer the OP's question, nor is it directed at the OP in any way, but is about FB in general. I have a FB account and am a very light user, rarely post, and just read the news feed now and then. I know a lot of adults who spend an inordinate amount of time looking at FB, almost as a compulsive habit. How have we arrived at the point where we're so concerned about what other people are doing and if they're approving of what we're doing? I see people all the time who, instead of enjoying one of life's many great moments, are obsessed with taking the picture, then fiddling around with posting to FB with just the right comment, then going back multiple times over the course of the day to check who has "liked" their post. If we add up the collective time spent in this country on FB, I can only imagine the lost productivity and chance to improve our lives. I know "to each their own", but wow, are we getting a little out of hand with this stuff?

Ok, rant over. :beer
Calico
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by Calico »

I've always wondered about Facebook's algorithm. It doesn't really seem to know what I like, but it tries to guess. I think maybe it uses other data on your phone to figure some things out. Perhaps a combination of web searches, other apps, and maybe even texts.

For example, I am always getting ads for diets and yoga pants/leggins. Tons of them--to the point where it is annoying. No matter how many times I select the "irrelevant" option to get rid of ads, they still pop up. I use an exercise and food tracker app every day because I need to so I don't gain the weight back that I lost (I lost a lot of weight and I have to always stay on top of things so I don't gain it back). So while I use this app, I am not really interested in diets, I am doing my own thing. And while I exercise, I don't need a bunch of tights and yoga pants (mostly I swim and walk).

What I really find interesting is when I shop online I suddenly start seeing ads for products I already bought. The annoying thing is half of the time they were gifts or things I only needed to buy once. I will see these ads for weeks. I never see my online purchases in Facebook though.

I sometimes want to get rid of Facebook. For the most part, it's just ads anymore and a handful of FB friends of mine who post nonsense. But I do like it for keeping in touch with family and other friends. I don't live geographically close to them any more so it's a great way to see pictures of nieces, cousins and their kids, see what's going on in their lives, etc. But it's starting to get to the point where the "noise" makes FB not worth it.
Last edited by Calico on Tue Jun 25, 2019 7:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Cosmo
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by Cosmo »

spartanap wrote: Mon Jun 24, 2019 10:22 pm I'm not on Facebook but my wife is. Tonight, we were at a local restaurant. We had an appetizer that was so good that we talked about looking for a recipe in order to fix it at home. A few minutes ago, she showed me her Facebook feed. On it was a video showing how to make the dish we had talked about earlier in the evening. Prior to this, she had not googled a recipe, talked to anyone about it, or taken a picture of the dish while at the restaurant. I understand that FB knows where we go, but how can they find out what we ordered?

I might be showing my total lack of knowledge in this area but...how can this happen?

Stuff like this is why I'm not on Facebook. :D
In before the lock! Anyway, Should you really care? You just shared this recipe info with us, that doesn’t seem to bother you. It’s not exactly sensitive info. Anyway, it’s a trade off. You get to use this useful social interface and keep track of your family and friends and share pictures and they get to find out about your web browsing habits.
Ed_Sandwich
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by Ed_Sandwich »

It's the microphone. Happens to me at least once a month.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by rj342 »

Sandtrap wrote: Mon Jun 24, 2019 10:48 pm That's nothing.
My DW's been reading my mind for nearly 40 years. :shock:
She'll even tell me what I'm thinking before I think it. :shock:
Facebook could learn a thing or two.
j
She always knows when youre wrong (in her opinion) ;)

Funny how people are concerned about privacy when it comes to Amazon Echo(Alexa), when security researchers have found no sign of it misbehaving (compared to what it days about how it works), but at same time tghey have all the far worse Facebook spyware running.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by Hockey10 »

Assume that everything you do on Facebook is being sold to third parties. This includes your contact info, your contact list, photos, comments, articles you link to, etc....
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by jebmke »

Amazon will also track you like a bloodhound. Never use their app on a mobile device. It took me a while but I finally shook them by isolating a browser on my desktop.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by spectec »

mancich wrote: Tue Jun 25, 2019 7:26 am This does not answer the OP's question, nor is it directed at the OP in any way, but is about FB in general. I have a FB account and am a very light user, rarely post, and just read the news feed now and then. I know a lot of adults who spend an inordinate amount of time looking at FB, almost as a compulsive habit. How have we arrived at the point where we're so concerned about what other people are doing and if they're approving of what we're doing? I see people all the time who, instead of enjoying one of life's many great moments, are obsessed with taking the picture, then fiddling around with posting to FB with just the right comment, then going back multiple times over the course of the day to check who has "liked" their post. If we add up the collective time spent in this country on FB, I can only imagine the lost productivity and chance to improve our lives. I know "to each their own", but wow, are we getting a little out of hand with this stuff?

Ok, rant over. :beer
Yes, but think of all the good that comes from Facebook. Think of all the political opinions that have been changed and all the bad theology that has been corrected, often by just a single snarky comment someone posted. How would we know what interesting and enviable lives our friends and families live if it weren't for their FB posts? And everyone is thrilled when they see a picture of a beautiful sunset unlike anything they've ever seen before. Or the smartest dog, cutest cat, marvelous kitchen remodel - no need to actually visit someone's home to experience these wonders. Just click on their home page and see it all.
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JoMoney
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

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Hockey10 wrote: Tue Jun 25, 2019 8:02 am Assume that everything you do on Facebook is being sold to third parties. This includes your contact info, your contact list, photos, comments, articles you link to, etc....
If only it was limited to things done one Facebook, they're tracking everybody every way they can...
https://www.consumerreports.org/privacy ... -facebook/

But you need to go their site or use their app so they can train you to keep coming back, clear your "alerts", look for new messages, see if you got comments or "likes", read new posts (that are old posts they selectively feed you out of order), and nudge you towards spending more time staring and clicking on whatever suits their interests.
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JoMoney
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by JoMoney »

spectec wrote: Tue Jun 25, 2019 8:16 am...
Yes, but think of all the good that comes from Facebook. Think of all the political opinions that have been changed and all the bad theology that has been corrected, often by just a single snarky comment someone posted. How would we know what interesting and enviable lives our friends and families live if it weren't for their FB posts? And everyone is thrilled when they see a picture of a beautiful sunset unlike anything they've ever seen before. Or the smartest dog, cutest cat, marvelous kitchen remodel - no need to actually visit someone's home to experience these wonders. Just click on their home page and see it all.
Yes, so wonderful we can do these things without actually socializing with other people, building a a real community with those around us, or having to go outside or look up from our screen. People in real life just aren't as pretty, funny, or provocative the screen "screens" out the boring stuff. People on Facebook must report that their lives are happier and satisified...
https://www.npr.org/sections/alltechcon ... -satisfied
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by mancich »

spectec wrote: Tue Jun 25, 2019 8:16 am
mancich wrote: Tue Jun 25, 2019 7:26 am This does not answer the OP's question, nor is it directed at the OP in any way, but is about FB in general. I have a FB account and am a very light user, rarely post, and just read the news feed now and then. I know a lot of adults who spend an inordinate amount of time looking at FB, almost as a compulsive habit. How have we arrived at the point where we're so concerned about what other people are doing and if they're approving of what we're doing? I see people all the time who, instead of enjoying one of life's many great moments, are obsessed with taking the picture, then fiddling around with posting to FB with just the right comment, then going back multiple times over the course of the day to check who has "liked" their post. If we add up the collective time spent in this country on FB, I can only imagine the lost productivity and chance to improve our lives. I know "to each their own", but wow, are we getting a little out of hand with this stuff?

Ok, rant over. :beer
Yes, but think of all the good that comes from Facebook. Think of all the political opinions that have been changed and all the bad theology that has been corrected, often by just a single snarky comment someone posted. How would we know what interesting and enviable lives our friends and families live if it weren't for their FB posts? And everyone is thrilled when they see a picture of a beautiful sunset unlike anything they've ever seen before. Or the smartest dog, cutest cat, marvelous kitchen remodel - no need to actually visit someone's home to experience these wonders. Just click on their home page and see it all.
Yes, how did we ever live before :D
josehde
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by josehde »

Facebook (and Google) algorithm definitely is something amazingly creepy, by the way they can often get you stuff that you need even without you asking for it. And yeah, they comply with the code of practice for privacy notices (it's a requirement, of course, more of it here) but it's often a bunch of jargons and lengthy sentences that I feel are meant to trip you up or put you to sleep. LOL. Facebook is most known for this because it's popular now, but I think there are a lot more apps to be scared of.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by nisiprius »

Reminds me of how mentalists and phony psychics do "blind readings." A nice illustrative example is the scene in the movie version of The Wizard of Oz, in which Professor Marvel reads Dorothy's mind. He does so through a combination of spying (secretly looking into the contents of Dorothy's purse), relying on universal experiences that people don't realize that people are universal--
Marvel: They -- they don't understand you at home. They don't appreciate you. You want to see other lands -- big cities -- big mountains -- big oceans --
Dorothy: Why, it's just like you could read what was inside of me.
--and refined feedback based on the victim's reactions to what has been said before. (For example, Dorothy is astonished when Marvel knows that her aunt is named Emily, despite having referred to her as "Em.")

Also, they don't need to be perfect or anything like it. We ignore the crazy ads, but we are started by the on-target ads.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

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spectec wrote: Tue Jun 25, 2019 8:16 am Yes, but think of all the good that comes from Facebook. Think of all the political opinions that have been changed and all the bad theology that has been corrected, often by just a single snarky comment someone posted. How would we know what interesting and enviable lives our friends and families live if it weren't for their FB posts? And everyone is thrilled when they see a picture of a beautiful sunset unlike anything they've ever seen before. Or the smartest dog, cutest cat, marvelous kitchen remodel - no need to actually visit someone's home to experience these wonders. Just click on their home page and see it all.
I see what you did there...

:happy
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Mr.BB
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by Mr.BB »

There is no more anonymity. I think most of us here would agree that we are really happy Facebook was not around when we are growing up. There is no public record of all the stupid things we did.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by 3-20Characters »

A year ago or more, I would have opined like others, that fb guessed based on what they know about you and the restaurant. As time goes by and I see how zuckerberg and upper management culture operates, my money is on eavesdropping.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by Kenkat »

They are not reading your mind, they are reading your data.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by Dargo »

Tracking searches helps.then quite a bit :shock:
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by gretah »

I love being a luddite.

Deleted Facebook account. Only used it to look at other peoples' FB pages before deletion.

No Alexa or Echo for me. No smart TVs, etc. They listen. I sometimes have sensitive conversations with clients via phone or in person at my home office. These should not be overheard.

I turn off my smartphone all the time. I also have a purse with RFID blocking.

I do have a LinkedIn profile and a website I created about my work and hobbies. I want to control most of what people read about me when searching my unusual name. I write books and readers sometime like to find something about me.

I use DuckDuckGo to keep my search history private.

I'm low tech, which seems to help. I hope to learn more ways to protect my privacy.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by bhsince87 »

Bang Bang Shrimp?
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by vitaflo »

ResearchMed wrote: Tue Jun 25, 2019 4:40 am And... it's "all of the creepiness/intrusions/etc." that are the reasons why I'm not on FB.
It doesn't really matter, FB still has a profile on you. FB has trackers all over the web on millions of sites. If you visit them, they know you were there. If someone on FB knows you, they can make the connection to you based on that user to fill in the blanks.

You don't have to ever visit FB for them to have a profile of you and your habits. This isn't just FB either, it's lots of companies. Look up how Target can determine when a woman is pregnant and when her due date is just by her buying things like lotion and cotton balls.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by Cycle »

Once you realize everything is a targeted add, it can be a fun game to try to avoid them. This means using mediocre but private search engines like duck duck go, using Firefox browser, and turning off location services.

My strategy is to default to Firefox, but when the initial search isn't satisfactory I open up chrome and do a Google search there.

Also, have all your receipts sent to a private email like protonmail. Otherwise Google will know and use all your shopping history.

I wonder if gooogle fit Android app uses my location to target ads at me or if it's just if I have google maps open. Google fit is my step counter. Google just read this, so if u want to chime in that would be cool instead of just sitting in the corner not saying anything
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by spectec »

Maybe some day I'll regret saying this, but I don't mind the targeted ads. If I'm not interested, I just click off. (It's just grog to be replaced by another ad anyhow so what's the problem?) But if I'm particularly interested in something, I make note of the price but try to avoid buying it when I first investigate it online. Might put in in my cart, but not complete the purchase. Over the next few days, I watch for the targeted ads and check their prices. Oftentimes I get an offer to purchase with a nice discount. Sometimes the discount is from the vendor whose cart I left incomplete. Other times it's another vendor entirely, whom I assume sent an offer because they were spying on my internet activity. Either way I save money.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by IowaFarmWife »

mancich wrote: Tue Jun 25, 2019 7:26 am This does not answer the OP's question, nor is it directed at the OP in any way, but is about FB in general. I have a FB account and am a very light user, rarely post, and just read the news feed now and then. I know a lot of adults who spend an inordinate amount of time looking at FB, almost as a compulsive habit. How have we arrived at the point where we're so concerned about what other people are doing and if they're approving of what we're doing? I see people all the time who, instead of enjoying one of life's many great moments, are obsessed with taking the picture, then fiddling around with posting to FB with just the right comment, then going back multiple times over the course of the day to check who has "liked" their post. If we add up the collective time spent in this country on FB, I can only imagine the lost productivity and chance to improve our lives. I know "to each their own", but wow, are we getting a little out of hand with this stuff?

Ok, rant over. :beer
My husband has frequently made this same comment, too. He has turned off his FB account and rarely uses it any more.
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Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by Cody6136 »

spartanap wrote: Mon Jun 24, 2019 10:22 pm I'm not on Facebook but my wife is. Tonight, we were at a local restaurant. We had an appetizer that was so good that we talked about looking for a recipe in order to fix it at home. A few minutes ago, she showed me her Facebook feed. On it was a video showing how to make the dish we had talked about earlier in the evening. Prior to this, she had not googled a recipe, talked to anyone about it, or taken a picture of the dish while at the restaurant. I understand that FB knows where we go, but how can they find out what we ordered?

I might be showing my total lack of knowledge in this area but...how can this happen?

Stuff like this is why I'm not on Facebook. :D

good to know that I am not the only BH who eats out. When my budget allows,I mean.....
dh
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Joined: Sun Mar 13, 2011 8:01 pm

Re: Facebook reading our minds?

Post by dh »

JoMoney wrote: Mon Jun 24, 2019 10:39 pm They didn't have to "read your mind", you said you talked about looking for a recipe.
If you have a smart-phone with the Facebook app, they very well could be listening to you and offering suggestions based on that. They're still working on the mind reading functionality, which is more complicated than the mind control (or at least operant conditioning) that they're pretty good at.
+1 What's App (a Facebook app on our phones) listens all the time. It is a bit unnerving at times.
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