We Are Being Watched

Yep, pretty much wasted this weekend.

And if you were to put a gun to my head, I really have no idea what I did. Well, I take that back. I basically binged-watch Person of Interest on Netflix before they took it off their system.

Now, as I was spending hours rewatching a serious that I’ve already seen twice, it got me to thinking. Some of the issues they were talking about on that show are some of the problems we face today.

I’m not going to give a lot away to you so that it would qualify as a spoiler alert. Still, I will just say that towards the end of the series, two Artificial Super Intellengences were duking it out for superiority. One was “benevolent,” and the other was “just trying to make mankind so much better.”

But what it came down to was, as it said in the opening montage, “we are being watched.” And while on the show, it was The Government monitoring us. In real life, we are being watched by our phones and those who provide the internet.

Now, before you think I’m some kind of conspiracy theorist, think again. What I’m talking about is that I am being bombarded with ads and notifications from places I’ve visited and looked up online. Ok, fine, I can deal with that. Because, after all, who wants to miss the next notification that my Harley parts are on sale. No, what I’m talking about is that I am also getting blasted with ads from places that I personally did not visit.

Let me give you an example.

I keep no secrets from Mrs. Nickels. In fact, if Mrs. Nickels wants to use my phone for something, I have no problem giving it to her to use. There is nothing on my phone that I am afraid of her seeing, so I have no problem letting her use it.

One day, her phone was going through an update, and she asked to use my phone to look up clothes that she was interested in getting for work. Seems harmless enough. Right? Well, it got a whole lot worse. For you see, for the past two weeks, I’ve been getting ads for women’s suits, bras, panties, and various styles of hosery. These ads would show up in my email and as notifications in my text messaging programs.

I didn’t look go looking for women’s clothing, she did. So imagine my horror while I am having drinks with the boys, I get a notification asking me if I’m still interested in getting 35 percent off women’s underwear.

Given the fact that I’ve never worn women’s clothing, except those two times for Halloween, and that I’ve never shopped for women’s clothing, why would my phone start sending me these ads?

I thought we finally have reached a point in our electronic existence where our search patterns would know the difference. It should know when I am looking for something and when someone else using my device is looking for something. Given the fact that we now have facial recognition, my phone should see that it was Mrs. Nickels who was looking for clothes for work, not me.

Hey, I have an idea. Why don’t I use Mrs. Nickels’ phone to look up parts for the Harley? That way, she will see the ads and maybe….Nah, it will never work.

We now return you to your COVID suspended regularly scheduled life…somewhat in progress.

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