Online advertising initiative targets dead people

happygeek

The New York Times is running a really funny story, but with serious implications, at the moment. It concerns how the online advertising targets particular groups of people using site tracking technology. Apparently, if you have AIDS, cancer or suffer from an erectile dysfunction then your movements will not be tracked in order to throw related advertising in your direction wherever you go. However, if you are dead then expect to be inundated with ads.

You can also expect to be targeted if you suffer from heart failure, warts and Parkinson’s disease – although not all at the same time one has to assume.

It all comes as part of a new Network Advertising Initiative proposal to distinguish between diseases when it comes to advertising, and specifically the behavioral targeting of users for advertising purposes.

It seems that it is an attempt at self-regulation in order to head off government mandates which could impose stricter rules following a Federal Trade Commission report last year. Let’s see what dead people have to say about that shall we…

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About the Author

A freelance technology journalist for 30 years, I have been a Contributing Editor at PC Pro (one of the best selling computer magazines in the UK) for most of them. As well as currently contributing to Forbes.com, The Times and Sunday Times via Raconteur Special Reports, SC Magazine UK, Digital Health, IT Pro and Infosecurity Magazine, I am also something of a prolific author. My last book, Being Virtual: Who You Really are Online, which was published in 2008 as part of the Science Museum TechKnow Series by John Wiley & Sons. I am also the only three times winner (2006, 2008, 2010) of the BT Information Security Journalist of the Year title, and was humbled to be presented with the ‘Enigma Award’ for a ‘lifetime contribution to information security journalism’ in 2011 despite my life being far from over...

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