This morning, I'd just finished writing an email to Mika about her new baby, when I saw the ad at the top of my Gmail was about baby formula. I tend to find Gmail ads entertaining because mine are usually about U2 tickets or books. Today, for no real reason, I decided to click on the "Why this ad?" link that explains that Google reads your emails to pick out keywords and then tries to sell you stuff. I accept this. I then clicked further to look at their web ads application, which is based on cookies in your browser. They show ads based on the kinds of sites you visit, and on your demographic. The demographic you're assigned in is based on the sites you visit. Upon first glance, I thought: whoa, Google is way off:
Dude, I browse the internet like a 35-44 year old! I need to visit some Justin Bieber sites to get that number down. Then I looked closer, and I thought, holy fuck, Google is way off:
I browse the internet like a 35-44 year old man. I'm not even a middle-aged woman, I'm some middle-aged guy. The hell? I read a lot of news sites, but, like, the Entertainment and Life sections, not Sports and Cars. I check Hark a Vagrant! compulsively, is that a 35-44 year old guy thing? That's the demographic of my oldest brother, and I'm fairly certain we aren't browsing the same things.
I thought Google was supposed to be smart? Out of curiosity, all my fellow Gmail users should check their assigned demographics and see if Google is usually just way off, or if I really am turning into my brother.