No Targeted Ads For AIDS & Cancer Patients; But Drug Addicts & Dead People Are Fair Game

from the you-gotta-have-some-standards dept

Last month, we discussed how behavioral targeting of advertising risked seriously creeping people out, if it reached that “uncanny valley” of being a little too targeted, but not yet useful. It seems that behavioral targeted advertising firms are trying to deal with this by working together to come up with a set of standards covering what topics are taboo when it comes to targeted advertising. Cancer and AIDS patients, rejoice. Advertisers have decided not to target you. However, if you’re old, addicted to drugs, religious, a convicted felon or dead, you’re fair game. Dead? Well, the ad group says it meant the “death” category to be for targeting ads at relatives making funeral plans (“Death in the family? Get a casket for 20% off!”). How thoughtful of those advertising groups.

Filed Under: , , , ,

Rate this comment as insightful
Rate this comment as funny
You have rated this comment as insightful
You have rated this comment as funny
Flag this comment as abusive/trolling/spam
You have flagged this comment
The first word has already been claimed
The last word has already been claimed
Insightful Lightbulb icon Funny Laughing icon Abusive/trolling/spam Flag icon Insightful badge Lightbulb icon Funny badge Laughing icon Comments icon

Comments on “No Targeted Ads For AIDS & Cancer Patients; But Drug Addicts & Dead People Are Fair Game”

Subscribe: RSS Leave a comment
Relonar says:

Actually I really surprised myself today.
And myself being the kind of person that opts-out of almost any sort of ad service, it was a really surprising thought.

I was walking into [insert random department store name here] and they had those little lcd screens that show a security camera feed as you walked in. then it switched to a blank page with the store logo(timer or something I supposed).
And I thought to myself: hey, wouldn’t it be totally neat If that camera was linked to a facial recognition software that was linked to a database that could pull an ad from demographic or ‘rewards card’ source, and then have the screen show me something I might be interested in?

after that I regained sanity and figured the Cina-bun(sp?) I had just enjoyed had been doped with something, man those things are good.

Tzar says:

Re: Recognition software

Yes, that would be great. A computer can recognize me and see my demographic and try to tie me into consumerism a little bit more, but think of the possibilities! That little computer could also recognize me and send that to a mainframe that kept track of where I (and everyone else is). Great as this would be for crime, think about the loss of freedom. Do you really want someone to know where you are and what you’re doing all the time?

Anonymous Coward says:

“No Targeted Ads For AIDS & Cancer Patients; But Drug Addicts & Dead People Are Fair Game”

Not to nitpick, but using a semi-colon *and* “but” to separate two statements is redundant. The semi-colon typically replaces the word “and”, anyway. So in the title that would be the same as saying “no targeted ads for aids & cancer patients and but drug addicts & dead people are fair game”.

Probably would have been better to replace the semi-colan with a comma and leave the rest as it is.

dualboot says:

Targeted ads

I used to work for an advertising agency, and I’m not sure if they mean what you’re all understanding it to mean. It has been several years, but when I was in advertising, targeted ads meant that they would be designed for a specific audience, and then (if they were commercials) would be inserted into shows that the desired demographic was likely to view. For instance, the ad related to death would probably be on late night, since people who are stressing about a recent death tend to sleep fewer hours than other people. Something targeting pet owners would play during “Lassie,” “AKC Championship,” and other pet-related shows. (AKC=American Kennel Club, for those of you who might not know).

Print targeted ads, on the other hand, are targeted using surveys, census data, and data from professional demographic analysis agencies. For instance, a household with a middle-age person and their elderly parent might receive the information targeting death since they are more likely to have it at top of mind than a 30-something couple with 3 kids. So you might get a flyer specific to your demographic based on publicly-available or researched information.

When it comes to internet targeted advertising, many websites (I don’t have my directory handy) automatically load a cookie onto your computer when you visit one of their clients, and then it tracks the types of websites you visit, and the terms you search, so that when you return to one of their clients’ websites, the banner ads and side-bar ads will be advertisements for their other clients, based on your browsing history.

They don’t need retinal scanning and facial recognition (although I’ve read and watched many sci-fi stories that suggest that is where our future is heading), to do behavioral analysis. That would involve far more research than necessary. They would need access to your criminal/credit/employment/purchase histories based on the identity it locates in the system for you, whereas simply tracking your browsing with a cookie is far more efficient, and doesn’t require delving into your deeply personal and confidential information, since they don’t care who you actually are… just that whoever uses this computer has browsed a bunch of sites about fertility lately, and the service provider would then show advertisements for fertility clinics instead of mortgage ads. (Although mortgage ads might make sense, too… where would you put your growing family?)

Also, is it just me, or are most of these posts completely off topic?

If you want to correct the editing in someone’s published writing, email them directly, don’t post it in a blog. I always tell my students, if someone is reading and makes a mistake, but you can still understand what the sentence means, don’t interrupt to correct them. It just detracts from the flow of things, and those things can be corrected privately.

NoNameGiven says:

Re: Targeted ads

I do not allow cookies on my computer.
Opps, there goes your easy tracking.

Then you have the likes of Phorm come along with their own version of the man in the middle attack. If allowed by the ISP and if it survives the court challanges, it potentially can record your every move on the web. The only problem with their targeting is that it relies upon javascript for delivery.
I do not allow arbitrary code execution on my computer.
Opps, there goes your targeted ads. I will never see them.

All this web 2.0 hoopla is fine and dandy for the folks who love flash, ajax and ruby on rails. However – there are those that dislike all that crap, and for good reason. Javascript is one of the favorite attack vectors among those that wish to take over your computer.

So … who are you kidding. Or maybe you are just some advertising bot spewing all over blogs.

J.D. says:

Targeted ads

Targeted advertising, in and of itself, could be considered harmless, if annoying. I can just imagine what Google mus know about me, but nobody is knocking on my door with a warrant – yet. It is the other uses that these corporate databases are being put to that worries me.

Companies don’t track their customers in house, they hire outside specialist firms to do it. I work for a major chain retailer. Last night, someone tried to return an electronic item without a receipt. Less than a second after the cashier scanned the BAR code, her POS terminal gave her a detailed record of who purchased the item, where it was purchased, and when it was purchased. It had not been sold by us, but Best Buy.

This might be considered a legitimate use of information, but you can see how this will lead to all sorts of mischief as governments have begun dipping into the databases for all sorts of reasons. Aside from the obvious, such as redistricting to fix elections, there are all sorts of issues regarding civil rights and national sovereignty. Suppose, for example, you bought a Nazi uniform once for a costume party. In France, that’s a criminal act. Could you end up on a wanted list in the EU? And when, not if, the next liberal administration signs us back up with the National Criminal Court, could France try to extradite you?

It’s too late to close Pandora’s box, but we need to establish a lot more oversight than is currently in place.

Relonar says:

Re:^2 Recognition software

As I stated it wasn’t my most sane or thought out thoughts that I have ever had. Obviously I would have problems with a service that tied anything more than a database number to [insert legal name and records], or something that would be used to track where I am all the time at multiple locations.

I was thinking something a bit smaller like an individual store chain. And link purchases to one of those use-this-card-and-get-great-rewards cards, something that you can easily use an alias or opt-out on.

Though as with any large enough database I could see that it could be abused.

but mostly it is just as bad/good as ads you may see at the end of your receipt when you use a card like that to “save that extra 10%”, I mean ‘they’ know exactly when and how many banana’s you buy every week with one of those!
just now they get you as you walk in with a brightly colored overpriced 3d projected image lcd display and higher than audible resonant speakers that privately announce your personal sales.

In my belief: it is coming. It is just a matter of getting the people that write the legal stuff to put some boundaries on how it can be used by the law enforcement (and gossipy marketing agents). At the same time it sets up ways for yourself to exploit this system…
have fun

deathbychichi says:

Since you specifically mentioned death...

Funerals are pretty high margin affairs and there are a number of little scams involved. LIke the doctor already sent your dad to a funeral home and you have to pay hundreds to even get him back, so you just go with that company. Then the equation of buying a casket that looks nice enough that your loved ones don’t think you cheaped out, and you gotta buy it from the same people who are holding his body hostage.

Screw that, I say give me targeted advertising and help me save a bundle on funeral expenses. The whole thing is an incredible metaphysical sham in which god and the state are dragged into your personal affairs, anyway… why impoverish yourself to feed those trading on your discomfort and grief? (And you can bet the funeral guys (aka caterers to the dead) would be very happy to have death-oriented targeted advertising declared off-limits as well.

mark says:

Apple 60 GB iPod Video

COMMUNICATIONS EBS LIMITED our thoughts and imagination are the only real limit to our possibilities…..but it takes the vision of all possibilities to attain new level of experience.

All our products are brand new not refurbish nor used, they are TESTED OK and seal with all their accessories in the box.

Please check our product invention list which is at manufacturing company prices.We are company base in united kingdom producing conducive atmosphere for every customers.


Pioneer Mixer :
Pioneer Turntables :
Pioneer CDJ-1000 MK3….$500
Pioneer CDJ-1000MK2…..$450
Pioneer CDJ-200 Pro CD Player $150
Pioneer DVJ-X1 DJ Video Player $1000
Pioneer CDJ-800MK2 Professional CD/MP3 Turntable $350
Pioneer DVJ-1000 Professional DVD Turntable $1000 .

Sony ericsson T616 850/1900 –US$125
SONY CMD-MZ5– —————US$109

Allen & Heath Xone:92 Fader DJ Mixer………..$1000USD
Allen & Heath Xone:464 16 Input Pro Club DJ Mixer……$1100USD
Allen & Heath Xone:02 Battle Mixer………$280USD
Vestax PMC-05PROIII DJ Mixer…..$300USD
Vestax PMC-500 DJ Mixer…….$900USD
Vestax PMC-05PROSL DJ Mixer with Sampling…..$350USD
Vestax PMC-06 Pro A 2 Channel DJ Scratch Mixer……$200USD
Vestax VCI-100 Tabletop DJ MIDI Controller ………. $250USD
Vestax PMC-08Pro Professional Hybrid Digital Mixer…..$450USD
Vestax PMC-05PROSL DJ Mixer with Sampling…..$300USD
Korg ZERO4 Live Control Mixer ……..$700USD
Korg ZERO8 Live Control Console Mixer.$1100USD
Korg KM-202 2-Channel KAOSS DJ Mixer……..$300USD
Rane MP 4 Rackmount DJ Mixer……$300USD
Rane MP44 DJ Club Mixer……………..$1000USD
Rane Empath Touring/Club Mixer……….$700USD
Rane MP 2016a 6-Channel Rotary Mixer…..$800USD
Rane TTM 57SL Performance Mixer with Serato Scratch ……$700USD
Rane TTM 56 Performance Mixer……………….$500USD
Rane MP 4 Rackmount DJ Mixer……$300USD
Stanton M.505 12″ Club Mixer with 5 Input Channels……$300USD
Stanton CM.205 CD / MP3 Player with Mixer …….$250USD
Behringer BCD2000 B-Control Deejay………$150USD
Behringer Refurbished VMX1000 Pro DJ Mixer ……..$200USD
Behringer DJX700 5-Channel Pro DJ Mixer ….$130USD
Hercules DJ Console MK2 Dual Deck DJ Mixer …..$200USD
Urei 1605 DJ Club Mixer……………$500USD
Urei 1601 Digital Scratch Mixer………$220USD
Mackie d.2 2-Channel DJ Mixer ……$300USD
PCDJ DAC-3 Digital Audio Controller……….$300USD
American Audio Q-Spand PRO 4-Channel DJ Mixer……$200USD
Akai MPC1000 Music Production Center………………..$500USD
Akai MPC4000-Plus – 64 Voice Sampling Drum Machine………$1800USD
Akai Akai MPC2500 Music Production Center…………..$1000USD
Akai MPC2000XL-MCD Production Station…………….$800USD
Akai MPC500 MIDI Production System/Sampler………$250USD
Roland SP-404 Portable Power Sampler with FX………$150USD
Roland Fantom-XR Sound Module………………………..$700USD
Roland VK-8M Organ Sound Module…………………….$350USD
Roland SP-555 Creative Sampler Workstation………….$200USD
Roland SonicCell 128-Voice Expandable Synth Module with Audio
Roland V-Synth XT Synthesizer………………..$1100USD
Yamaha MOTIF ES Rack Module………$500USD
Yamaha VL70-M Virtual Acoustic Tone Generator………….$200USD
Yamaha Refurbished Motif ES Rack Module…………………$300USD
Technics SL-1210MK5 Pro Turntable……………..$250USD
Technics SL-1210MK2 Turntable………………….$150USD
Technics SL-1210M5G Pro Turntable……………..$350USD
Technics SL-DZ1200 Digital Turntable…………….$500USD
Numark CDX Direct-Drive CD Turntable……$300USD
Numark TTX Direct-Drive Turntable…………$200USD
Numark X2 Pro Hybrid Turntable And CD / MP3 Player…..$600USD
Numark DVD01 Dual DVD Player………$400USD
Numark 5000FX 12″ 5-Channel Tabletop Mixer ….$400USD
Numark DXM09 Digital DJ Mixer…$250USD
Numark AVM02 Audio/Video Mixer with Effects ……$600USD
Numark CM200USB 5-Channel 19″ Rackmount DJ Mixer …….$200USD
Numark DXM06 2-Channel Digital Mixer….$200USD
Numark iDJ 2 DJ Console for the iPOD ………..$400USD
Numark NuVJ Video Mixer …………………$200USD
Numark CM100 Club Series DJ Mixer….$150USD
Denon DN-X900 Professional 19″ Analog/Digital Mixer…..$300USD
Denon DN-X500 Professional 19″ Mixer …$250USD
Denon DN-X100 Professional 2-Channel DJ Mixer……$150USD
Denon DN-S5000 Tabletop DJ CD Player…$400USD
Denon DN-D9000 Dual Pro CD Player…..$700USD
Denon DN-D4500 Dual CD/MP3 Player….$300USD
Denon DN-S3000 Table Top DJ CD Player Refurb……$200USD
Denon DN-D6000 Dual CD MP3 Player Refurb……….$300USD

All our product are brand new , original and they comes in there BOX with Full accessories and also with 1 year international warranty and 90days return policy


Apple 60 GB iPod Video
Apple 80 GB IPod Video

Our minimum order is 5unit while we accept smaller unit as sample order. The sample order attract 10% discount from normal goods prices.

Product name and model among the listed above.
Amount of unit needed
Shipping Address including name and phone number

Thanks as we wait your reply.

Sincerely yours,
Mrs Vivian Mundol
Registered No.04745757
Mobile: +447045704398

Add Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Comment Options:

Make this the or (get credits or sign in to see balance) what's this?

What's this?

Techdirt community members with Techdirt Credits can spotlight a comment as either the "First Word" or "Last Word" on a particular comment thread. Credits can be purchased at the Techdirt Insider Shop »

Follow Techdirt

Techdirt Daily Newsletter

Techdirt Deals
Techdirt Insider Discord
The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...