Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Does "cross selling" come from a "simpler" and singular privacy policy?

There has been a lot of controversy over Google’s plan for a “single privacy policy”, to be implemented March 1, stated here. It appears that there is a strong preference that customers always use the names they are actually known by.

PC World has a detailed discussion of the increased effort to coordinate the same information against all applications, which Google says will enable it to serve customer needs more specifically. Facebook has been saying the same thing in principle with Timeline (which becomes mandatory in a few days).  It’s clear that the business model of all of these companies requires considerable specificity in connecting users to potential sellers.  That is somewhat part of the price of “free content” and, more important, low “barrier to entry”.   The PC link is here

It’s not immediately obvious whether browser controls or other “do not track” mechanisms could interfere with these efforts by Internet companies to do such heavy cross-selling;  but probably not, because the information application-sharing affects so many other activities besides surfing.  I used to hear the buzzword "cross selling" a lot when I spent twelve years in IT in the life insurance industry. 

The Boston Herald has an article about the Big G going for the “Dark Side” (Raakhee Mirchandani), here.    So do many other major papers.  But it seems, so must every company taken seriously by Wall Street, to maintain stellar earnings now expected.   Let’s see the pressures Facebook faces if it goes public.

I've noticed, when I travel, that I get ads from most servers (including news sites) related to the geographical location I dialed in from (all companies know where my Verizon MiFi is, like when I'm in Dallas) and to the political issues that I write about a lot.  Everyone is tailoring my "experience" with marketeers.  That's probably not a problem for me because my life is relatively "simple", and security is straightforward. That's not the case for everyone, especially politicians and executives and people with big families.  

SOPA now sounds like a glass of ice water, not yet thrown to wash away the drain flies. 

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