COM0011 Blog 6 Five Things Social Media Knows About You

Robin Williams RIP top trend on August 11, 2014

The death of this wonderful actor has tens of thousands of tweets, youtube visits, and facebook mentions just hours after his death was announced.  Fans and commentators have lots to say.  He made me laugh and think and sometimes tear up a bit, so I admit, I am interested in this news and read a few articles about it.


But look what else happened today:

  • 45,000 Russian troops began forming up on the border with Ukraine
  • Spain tested a new anti-Ebola drug on an infected priest while the disease rages across Africa
  • Citizens riot in St. Louis after the shooting by police of an unarmed teenager
  • The United States will make targeted strikes in Iraq to quell the rising insurgency
  • Over 200,000 people are displaced in Gaza during the recent fighting

It’s all bad news and it’s all available on line, but you have to hunt for these stories a bit.  Each story has a set of ads that go with it and each ad is tailored to the demographic looking at the article.  The difference in coverage between these two kinds of stories shows us what Social Media has learned about us.


 So here’s what Social Media knows about you:

1.  We know what you want.  

You want to feel good.  We can make you feel good.  You want to remember happy times with friends and families even in times of sorrow.     You don’t want to challenge yourself with problems too big to solve.  You want to buy things.  

2.  We know what you want to buy.

Tonight you want to buy an iPhone 6.  We have videos of couples and singles and adorable children and nice houses and cars enjoying their lives with an iPhone 6.  You want all of that too.

3.  We know that if you’re reading about serious stuff you might not want to buy fun stuff.

But just in case you do, we place ads for the iPhone 6 on the serious stories too, so it’s there when you need a break.  Advertisers will not pay as much for these spots.  Because we are charging less for these ads, we don’t have as much money to spend for covering these stories and we don’t give them as much space on the page or flashy coverage.

4.  We know what you want to share with your friends or talk about at work.

We know because we measure what you like and what you share on line.  You will talk about Robin Williams tomorrow.  The anti-ebola test drug maybe not so much.  While you talk, you will have the happy glow of the iPhone 6 and you might buy one at your lunch break.

5.  We know that we can influence how you live your life.

We can sell you things that you didn’t even expect to buy.  We can make you think things are important to you, even if they`re not.  We can help you choose your political candidates, find a desirable mate, eat whatever food we want you to have, we can keep you up late at night doing nothing in particular and do you know what the really sweet thing about is?  This is exactly what you want.


The video clip above was inserted so that you would want to read the blog.

Meanwhile events that might have a true impact on your life go un-noted.

How do YOU remain unpredictable to Social Media?

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