Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Marketing Schemes: They're called "schemes" for a reason


I recently got a new phone. Nothing fancy. Just a Tr*cFone to replace my old one. (*this is where an "a" is supposed to go, but I'll tell you why it's not there in a minute.) It's three years old and the 7 key is worn out. That's not good as it is, but that also happens to be the key with "r" and "s" on it. Texting becomes a b----. I've also been having battery problems for a while.

Anyway, I went to their website and purchased one of their cheap phone packages-- something with double minutes and a 60 min card. Nice little deal. I have no need for a complicated phone. What's the battery like? Does it have a phonebook? Does it text? Can I put my phone charms/straps on it? That's all I ask. The one I picked happened to have a USB charger. That made my day. I'm loving M*torola more by the second. (*this one has an "o" in it.)

So I love these two companies pretty well. The former is the only cell phone company i've seen that i don't feel like their secretly trying to rip me off. I can literally and easily do the math and decide how much I want to be ripped off, or not. And I don't feel like their trying to sell me something I don't want. The latter just pleases me with their product more every time I run into them. My nice, good-natured Japanese company. It's difficult for a large company to gain my affections, what with my paranoias and hatred for large organizations.

So if I'm so pleased by these companies, why am I censoring them out? One word: Marketing. Not two hours after I visit the site and PURCHASE A PHONE, does EVERY add on my computer suddenly become a Tr*cFone add, some of which are the same package I purchased or one of the ones very similar. WTF?! "I've already got one!" That's why I was on their site morons! Leave me the f--- alone!

Now, despite the previous expletive "WTF," I'm actually not surprised or baffled in the least. I've known for years that marketers and other sites crawl your computer and cache for how best to lure in your soul into their clutches. I realized the extent of it a few years ago when logging into F*cebook for the first time in months, and I found a message put on my news feed telling me an everyone I had on my "friend" list about a game i had played on a DIFFERENT site three or four weeks before. It may have even had my score. That was when I knew for sure that F*acebook was evil.

And, for as much as I love G*ogle, they've gotten really good at this reading-your-personality-by-looking-at-your-browsing-history thing-- scary good. One side of me admires the technical, programing, and design genius; the other is sick with fear. You know they don't have to stop at your browsing history… or marketing. G*ogle still has some decent ethics when it comes to this kind of stuff, and I still like them-- they're geniuses-- but G*ogleChr*me? G*ogle cell phone? I think not.

I've said for a long time that I don't believe in government conspiracy theories. The Gov just isn't competent enough. Organizations, religions, and large corporations? That's an entirely different story. They have the cunning, the resources, and the malice to do it. (Seriously, women's clothing sizes. WTF? Most impractical and inconsistent measuring scheme ever devised. Why? Only they know, but it's a conspiracy, I tell you.) And if it will get them money or power, especially businesses, they will.

If I disappear in a few months, you all know why.

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