Australian news, and some related international items

Captive Mood: how Big Tech manipulates your emotions to serve advertiser

Captive Mood: how Big Tech manipulates your emotions to serve advertisers Michael  West Media 
By Manal al-Sharif By Manal al-Sharif| August 25, 2021  

The digital advertising platforms don’t just want our data. They also want us to spend our lives online, an “addiction” created for the primary purpose of serving advertisers. Manal al-Sharif reports on the pitfalls of “digital dictatorship” in this latest of her Tech4Evil series.

According to a 2016 study, we touch our phones around 2617 times a day, while another showed that 79 percent of phone owners check their device within 15 minutes of waking up. Our attention has been hijacked so much that one out of every four car accidents in the United States is believed to be caused by texting and driving.

As a result, we have shorter attention spans, take our phones everywhere, and become anxious when it’s out of sight.

According to the Oxford Journal of Consumer Research, targeted ads don’t just make us more likely to buy — they can change how we think about ourselves.

Former Google employee, Tristan Harris compared the persuasive techniques of Big Tech apps to giving us doses of dopamine, like a slot machine in our pockets. It’s all designed to keep us hooked and coming for more

………….  Governments want to avoid obstructing innovation and technological advancement and end up giving the big tech companies the luxury of operating unregulated. Governments – such as in Australia – are also not keeping up with the speed of the tech world…….

you can’t fully protect yourself unless you go back to your 1997 Nokia or don’t use the internet. Once you go online, nothing is private. Apart from minimising the harm by making informed clicks and try your best to understand what you give informed consent to for the sites you visit. An almost impossible task, especially if you are not a lawyer specialising in privacy.

But there are some other simple steps you can take to avoid online tracking:

  1. Use Search engines that won’t save every search you make, like DuckDuckGo.
  2. Remove invasive privacy apps from your phone like Facebook, Tik Tok and the like (Apple Store offers Privacy Report on popular apps before downloading).
  3. Use private browsers like Tor, Brave and Safari.
  4. Reject all non-essential cookies when visiting websites.
  5. Create an online persona to sign up for services and mailing lists.
  6. Use ad-blocker and Privacy Badger while browsing.

Still, none of these ways will evade the fingerprinting technique mentioned in our previous article………….

August 26, 2021 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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