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Not the first time
Authored by: Blah on Jan 13, '06 01:52:38PM
It all works the same way Amazon does. How many of you don't use Amazon?, because you don't want the company to try its best to make your browsing/buying experience easier. Isn't this what customer service is all about?!

I don't use Amazon at all because I find the harvesting and aggregation of customers' personal information completely vile. This is not specific to Amazon, but it was an easy reply to your question. Yes, I am in the minority, but as people become more mindful of the long-term ugly side to loss of privacy in the commercial world (and eventually government, don't fool yourself, they're not dumb. When enough information they want is accumulated, they will get it), things will change.

The problem is that once the information enters "the system", it's very difficult, sometimes impossible, to remove it. Now you're stuck.

Instead of the myopic view of what's in it for me today, you need to look at the curve and extrapolate. If people embrace commercial gathering and use of their personal information, it will continue to get worse. At least until the point people rebel. If it's not too late.

Think. At 37 you find some extremely important community issues and decide to run for public office. But wait, somewhere there is aggregated information from various sites about things you read or did or listened to 10 years ago. Guess what? It's not going to be a secret for long. Can you rebuff it? Pooh-pooh it as something you did when you were young? Perhaps. But do you want to risk it? There are a thousand scenarios of potential problems, and all of them will exist because people cared about the momentary gratification of having something thrown in front of their face that they might like better than an alternative.

I'm not saying the goal of any of these companies is evil - they just want to sell more products! But face it. You're falling into the marketing machine's ugly grasp when you kowtow to this stuff....

Okay, enough ramble-ranting. Hopefully at least someone gets the point.

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